Working from home is good for business as well as employees’ health and
quality of life, a staff survey by BT shows.
Caroline Waters, head of employment at BT, said more than 90 per cent of BT
‘s flexiworkers who responded to the survey said that productivity increased,
they had more leisure time and it was easier to help around the home.
The report, Teleworking at BT – The environmental and social impacts of its
work about scheme, by the University of Bradford and the UK Centre for Economic
and Environmental Development, shows that teleworking also reduces absenteeism.
Seventy-eight per cent of teleworkers said they are now more productive and
22 per cent had worked from home during their last typical working month when
they felt too ill to travel.
"BT has been offering flexiwork for years. The survey is a very good
affirmation of what we knew," Waters said. "It gives people benefits,
is good for business, good for society, and good for the local community."
Reasons workers gave for greater productivity included reduced disruption,
reduced commuting time and stress, and greater flexibility about when and where
Ten per cent of those surveyed said they would not be able to undertake
their current job unless able to telework, including people with children,
carers for ill or disabled people or those with special needs.
The survey shows that teleworking also promotes a better work-life balance –
73 per cent of respondents felt their work-life balance was good or very good,
and 85 per cent of teleworkers felt that their quality of life was good or very
However, Waters said there are things to watch out for when offering
teleworking. Some teleworkers feel isolated, while others find it hard to
switch off from work. She said BT hopes to open the scheme up to more people.
By Quentin Reade
Key survey findings on teleworking
– 22 per cent of teleworkers said
they had worked at home during their last working month when they felt too ill
to travel to work
– 73 per cent felt their work-life balance was good or very good
– 74 per cent of new registrants say travel reduction was an
important factor in their decision to telework
– 78 per cent of teleworkers considered themselves to be more
– 82 per cent felt teleworking was important or very important
to their quality of life
– 85 per cent of staff felt their quality of life was good or
– 90 per cent were satisfied or very satisfied with teleworking