UK lags behind the rest of Europe for remote working

Employers could save a massive £32 billion by letting more employees work from home, according to the Telework Research Network.

Only 4.9% of the UK labour force works from home for two days or more and we now rank 12th among our European counterparts. As well as the management and motivational benefits, allowing people to work remotely could save employers £3,000 a year for each employee who spends two days a week working at home.

Contractor accountants will already be familiar with remote working. Not only do remote workers save on travel expenses, food and cloths, they also have more freedom to choose where they live.

With the advent of cloud computing, there is less need for people to go to the office and input data into accounting software. If that can be done remotely, there’s no reason why employers take things a step further and provide the means for other day to day tasks to be completed from home.

The Telework Research Network found that most people believe corporate inertia and management issues are holding employers back. But companies need to review their strategy. Remote workers need to be disciplined but they can be a lot more productive when day to day office distractions are removed.

The research showed that productivity increased by an average of 20% on the days employees worked at home. Companies spent less on energy and desk space and absenteeism reduced by nearly 5 days per year.

It appears that the UK still has a long way to go before remote working really takes off. But once it does, both employers and employees will see immediate benefits.

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