Three out of four UK companies have no teleworking policy even though half of their employees want to telework, according to new research.
Cui Bono, an IT market research specialist, conducted 690 telephone interviews with senior industry analysts, focus groups and IT and business managers between January and March this year.
It discovered that 20% of remote workers spend six hours or more per week using a computer to work remotely from the office, with a further 50% spending up to five hours. Of those who work remotely, 30% connect to the office once or twice a day.
Analyst Clive Longbottom, of CSL Consultancy Services, said: "It is clear that companies which successfully manage a transition to enable a mobile workforce will gain a strong competitive advantage."
Andy Mulholland, industry watcher at Cap Gemini, said the main inhibitors to teleworking are fear and uncertainty over whether it will work, the cost of setting up remote workers with all the kit they need, and a lack of an adequate communications infrastructure.
However, he believes there are more reasons to telework than not.
"Office space is becoming more and more expensive, cooperative working between companies is becoming more popular and teleworking is a good way of retaining key staff by letting them work from home," he explained.
Mulholland also sited the pressure and distractions of office work as a big driving force behind the move to working from home.
- Symantec's Norton Mobile Essentials: troubleshoots mobile PC connection problems and helps mobile professionals prepare for business trips by automatically adjusting computer settings such as printer and modem settings for new locations. It performs a series of tests and determines whether the fault exists on the laptop or the machine the user is trying to reach. Shipping now at #69.
- Symantec's Mobile Update: uses Email to send the latest document changes to a user's mobile PC, keeping them up-to-date. It has two components; one for the laptop and the other for the office network. The user chooses which files or network folders need to be monitored for changes and the times the updates are sent. Symantec 01628 592384
- Telefficiency's Team TeleCall: least-cost routing software package. The product includes a centralised software reporting facility that plugs into telephone sockets providing monthly updates on employees' call activity and telecoms billing. The software can be used by managers to develop tailored reports profiling call patterns. Managers can compare costs of various service providers and tailor their TeleCall software to route certain calls via particular service providers depending who has the cheapest service. The package also includes two routing devices, one for a combined telephone/fax line and a second for a separate Email/Internet line, for #2 per month for each teleworker. Telefficiency 0800 980 5200.
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