Digital Transformation

TUC calls for employers to support home workers

Businesses should consider the desire among their staff for working from home

Avoiding the commute, spending an extra hour in bed and not having the pressures of the daily office environment weighing on their shoulders – there are a wide range of reasons that can explain why many Britons often choose to work at home.

And with a survey carried out by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) finding that one in five employees that aren’t permitted to work from their domestic desks would like to be able to do so, the organisation has called for employers to show a more flexible attitude towards staff.

"There is a huge demand from staff for more flexible working practices but too often they are held back by out-of-date attitudes and a lack a trust from bosses," said Brendan Barber, general secretary of the TUC.

With the internet now making remote working a far simpler process than in the past, businesses can set up a digital mailroom or implement an online server backup system that enables employees to access the network from their own living rooms.

What’s more, with the Olympics fast approaching and home working being touted as one possible solution for companies to deal with the expected disruption, it seems that taking steps to cater for staff that can work remotely could be an effective means of maintaining standard levels of productivity.

Phil Flaxton, Work Wise UK’s chief executive, said: "The potential for disruption during the Olympics is an immediate strong motivator to consider all the opportunities available to become more efficient."

As well as the survey finding that there is a genuine appetite among Brits when it comes to being able to work from home, it also revealed that workers over 55 are twice as likely to engage in the practice as those under 35.

While this may come as a surprise given the higher levels of IT skills among younger workers, this is attributed to factors such as early-year child care and living with parents that can restrict staff who fall into such categories from getting involved with the home working trend.