Interesting to read about how the global economic downturn impacted the attitudes of employers regarding the utility and advantages of "telework." From the Financial Post:
"When the recession hit, the C-suite started looking seriously at the numbers and discovered telework could deliver some staggering productivity gains. Ms. Lister’s years of research have unearthed a wealth of statistics. For example, across the board companies have realized anywhere from 10% to 55% increases in productivity through teleworking.
Several larger companies she has worked with have found that employees will “give back” 60% of time that otherwise would have been spent commuting. “They actually try harder. The other thing is people can work at the time of day they’re the most productive and have fewer interruptions,” she notes.
An IBM study of its global workforce asked employees at what point work interfered with their home life. Non-teleworkers said 38 hours; teleworkers said 57, which indicates greater tolerance when people are able to work when and where they want.
A City of Ottawa year-long teleworking pilot reduced case closing times from 90 to 15 days, Ms. Lister reports."
The problem? Middle managers feel like it reduces their control. Otherwise, it seems like we'll see more of this going forward: people working flexible hours from home, and putting in only sporadic time at the office.