Nearly 14% of employed people are home workers, up from 12% in 2005, the study for today’s National Work from Home Day showed
Home working: It’s now more popular than ever
A record 4.2million people regularly work from home and 1.8million more would like to, says a TUC study.
The ranks of the stay-at-home workers have been swelled by 800,000 since 2005.
Nearly 14% of employed people are home workers, up from 12% in 2005, the study for today’s National Work from Home Day showed.
TUC boss Frances said home workers enjoy “a better work-life balance”.
The study is published to mark the tenth National Work from Home Day, which is organised by Work Wise UK, and shows that the South East and London have seen the greatest growth in home working in the last decade.
The findings also show that homeworking is disproportionately taken up by men (62.8%), partly because they outnumber women in self-employment, where more than two-thirds of workers are men (68%).
Working from home
Unsurprisingly, the wired-up information and communications industry has above average homeworking (17.7%), while other white collar industries like the professional, scientific and technical sector (16%) and real estate (14.4%) also do well.
In contrast, only 7% of retail staff work from home. The growth of online shopping has replaced counter staff with warehouse workers.
The ability to work from home is also strongly associated with occupational seniority, with one in five managers working from home (20%),
Frances O’Grady, TUC general secretary, said: “These figures show millions of British workers have adopted homeworking and are enjoying a better work-life balance, while saving time and money on costly commuting that benefits no-one.
“Although organisations that have embraced homeworking often say that it has improved retention and productivity, there are still too many employers who are afraid to let their staff try out this way of working.
“As the labour market tightens, National Work from Home Day is a useful reminder for employers to think about keeping their employees engaged by introducing more employee-friendly forms of flexibility for those who want to change how and where they perform their work.”
And Work Wise UK Chief Executive Phil Flaxton said: “While there has been a significant increase in regular homeworking since 2005, clearly more needs to be done to convince some employers that implementing new working practices can result in a win-win situation for both their business and their employees.
“Thanks to modern technology, introducing efficient flexible working processes can be done both quickly and easily, but trust in transition remains a major issue.
“Work is something you do, not somewhere you go, and adopting a flexible culture has been proven to cut down on wasted time and cost.
“Trust, and perceived impact on culture, are however the main barriers to change, not technology.”