Telecommuting could save $53 billion per year: Report

Increases in productivity, morale other benefits
||Last Updated: 04/27/2011

Twice weekly telecommuting could save Canadian companies, employees and the community more than $53 billion per year, according to a report by Calgary Economic Development and the Telework Research Network.

Canadian employers could see savings of $10,000 annually for twice weekly telecommuting per employee, and employees could see savings between $600 and $3,500 per year through reduced commuting and work-related expenses, found WORKshift Canada: The bottom line on telework.

Additionally, Canadian companies could see annual average savings due to reduced turnover of more than $1.8 billion. They could also see a 20-per-cent increase in productivity, a seven-per-cent reduction in attrition and increased employee empowerment and morale, found the report, which was compiled using census data and analysis of more than 400 case studies, research papers and other documents related to telework.

“(The report) has us convinced more than ever of the necessity to work within our communities and organizations to start adopting these practices in a very meaningful way,” said Robyn Bews, program manager at WORKshift. “It hits employers over the head with supportive facts they can no longer ignore. Every commuter in Canada should be sitting in their boss’s office tomorrow morning with this paper as a discussion point.”

While four out of 10 Canadians have jobs that could be done at home, at least part of the time, and eight out of 10 would work from home if they could, only three out of 100 do so, said Kate Lister, principal researcher and lead consultant at the Telework Research Network.

“Telework should be a no-brainer,” said Lister. “There's simply no quicker, easier and more popular way to solve labour shortages, reduce energy consumption and pollution, save money and so much more.”

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