If you’ve been reading this blog for a while you’ll know about all of the benefits of remote working. But it is always good to see how others are beginning to see these benefits for themselves, even in large corporations.
Although many businesses have yet to realise the full benefits of allowing their staff to work remotely, O2 has just carried out one of the largest remote working experiments in the UK and reported back its results, which we all knew already: remote working is not only possible, but has numerous benefits for both companies and employees.
Planning for Olympic Disruptions
The details of the experiment were reported in The Telegraph, which explained how the study was carried out in February as a trial for expected disruption which might occur during the Olympics.
As part of the trial, nearly all the staff in the Slough office were allowed to work from home for the day apart from a few critical members of staff who stayed in the office.
The results were very positive and O2 experienced a number of benefits from sending their staff home for the day. These included: £9,000 saved in travel costs 36% of staff said they were more productive than in the office 14% saw more of their families An extra 1,000 hours were spent working rather than commuting Nearly 1,000 fewer cars were present at the campus 12.2 tonnes of CO2 was saved
O2 made a few preparations before allowing its staff to work from home. These included upgrading its Virtual Private Network so that employees could access the company’s internal websites and files securely from their own homes. You can read more about VPNs and why they are so useful for remote working here.
And remember, you don’t need to be O2 to get your hands on the software you need to work remotely. You can easily sort out your own VPN when working abroad at a very competitive price, and many online software solutions such as Google Docs are completely free.
The Possibilities are Becoming Clearer
Large scale experiments like this are great for anyone who wants to work remotely, even if you do not work for a large company. Such experiments help to spread the word about the benefits of remote work, and they also make it an even more normal part of working life.
All in all, this experiment shows that even large companies are starting to think seriously about the benefits of remote working, and as more firms begin to discover these benefits for themselves, this can only be a good thing for them and for you.
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