Telecommuting grown threefold in 20 years, survey shows

Work at home options on as-needed basis also increasing

Posted July 29, 2016

The flexibility to work from home one or more days a week is an appealing concept to many employees, and especially to the now largest workforce generation — the Millennials.

Since 1996, there has been a threefold increase nationally in the percentage of organizations offering telecommuting benefits — from 20 to 60 percent — according to a new survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

“Telecommuting is also particularly appealing to workers living in big cities with consistently heavy rush hour traffic,” explained Evren Esen, director of workforce analytics at SHRM. “Technological advances over the past 20 years have made this shift possible. Companies also are responding to employees’ desire for more flexibility and when and where they work.”

In the past five years, telecommuting on an as-needed basis also has increased 11 percentage points (from 45 to 56 percent) and mealtime flex went up by five points (from 38 to 43 percent). Decreases were found for break arrangements, telecommuting on a part-time basis, and compressed workweeks.


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