Bosses split over productivity of teleworkers

Although most bosses say they trust their staff to work from home, many think home workers are workshy and less productive than...

Although most bosses say they trust their staff to work from home, many think home workers are workshy and less productive than office-based staff.

The Vodafone UK Working Nation report found that 38% of company heads surveyed believe home workers are less productive, and 22% think working from home is an excuse for time off.

Most bosses (98%) said they trusted their staff to work remotely and offered flexible hours (71%) and the ability to work from home (61%). However, 68% of staff said they had not been given the opportunity to work from home.

Bill Morrow, chief executive at Vodafone UK, said, "There is a big shift taking place in UK management style and practice and it will take several more years to work through fully into the global business environment. We are moving away from traditional 'paternalistic' organisations to ones where employer and employee have a more adult relationship."

The UK Working Nation report examined companies that have successfully implemented home working initiatives.

Nick Howarth, managing director at marketing communications company HHCL/Red Cell, said, "All of our employees, not just the managers, are equipped with the same devices and services to support flexible, out-of-office working. We encourage people to be creative through working in alternative places that get the thought processes started, whether it is the local coffee shop or their own back garden."

Richard Tang, managing director at ISP Zen Internet, said, "All Zen Internet employees receive a free broadband connection at home that enables many members of staff to work from home. This gives our staff the flexibility to be at home but still able to work."

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