Remote work arrangements increasingly common

22 per cent of CFOs say more people teleworking, at satellite offices: Survey
||Last Updated: 09/20/2011

Face-time isn't what it used to be at some offices, according to an Accountemps survey.

More than one-fifth (22 per cent) of CFOs interviewed said remote work arrangements, such as telecommuting and working from satellite offices, have increased at their companies in the last three years. Just two per cent of the 270 executives said these arrangements have decreased at their firms.

CFOs were asked: "Have remote work arrangements (for example, telecommuting or working from a satellite office) within your company increased, decreased or remained the same in the last three years?" Their responses:
•Increased greatly (five per cent)
•Increased somewhat (17 per cent)
•No change (66 per cent)
•Decreased somewhat (one per cent)
•Decreased greatly (one per cent)
•Doesn't apply/no remote work (10 per cent)

"Providing staff with more flexibility over their work schedules can be a great incentive for employees, as well as a valuable retention tool for businesses," said Kathryn Bolt, Canadian president of Accountemps. "Many firms enjoy offering these options, which can be relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to implement given the prevalence of mobile technologies and wireless communication."

While not all roles are suited for remote work arrangements, companies that do allow them should establish clear expectations and productivity goals with their employees, she said.

Accountemps identified five tips for employers:
Communication: Keep remote workers in the loop on the latest news about the department and company. Don’t rely solely on email — schedule regular calls and in-person meetings.
Resources: Ensure off-site employees have the necessary resources, including appropriate network access.
Planning: Establish expectations and guidelines at the outset so you can monitor the arrangement and adjust as necessary.
Security: Work with IT personnel to set up the requisite security protocols.
Camaraderie: To ensure remote workers continue to feel connected to the group, include them in team activities and recognize their accomplishments in front of their colleagues.

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