Is Telecommuting a Good Option For Your Employees?

screening employees, employee background checkMany employees like the idea of telecommuting. Avoiding the crowded freeway sounds like a great idea. Gas prices are high, so commuting can eat into a paycheck. And keeping an eye on the kids while getting a daily to-do list accomplished is a winning combination for parents who work from home (in their pajamas?).

But is telecommuting as productive as working in the office? Employees say so. In fact, 86% said they were even more productive during telecommuting, according to a recent survey of telecommuting employees by Staples, the office supply retailer.

In addition, 76% of employees who are allowed to avoid the daily commute to the office (an average 75-mile round trip among those surveyed) said they are more willing to work extra hours and feel greater loyalty to the company.

What more could telecommuting employees want? A better chair. Nearly half said they need a more comfortable chair and that clutter in their home office affects their productivity. Of course, since Staples was conducting the survey, this finding is not all that surprising.

Other interesting tidbits from the employee telecommuting survey:

  • Telecommuters are succeeding on their own, not because of support from their employers. 87% said their company supplied no furniture and about 60% said they received no equipment or supplies from their employers.
  • Employees who telecommute report they eat healthier and are less stressed. The average reported drop in stress level was 25%.
  • 80% of telecommuters say they have a better work/life balance.
  • To stay in touch with the office, 96% of telecommuters say they rely on email, while 68% use instant messaging and 44% videoconferencing.
  • 40% of respondents said they’d rather take a pay cut than stop telecommuting.

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