The pilot, according to a story released on The Next Web (an online publication on news in the area of internet technology, business and culture), allowed 2,500 of Telefonica UK's staff to work remotely for the day on 8 February instead of coming into its Slough head office (normally home to one-quarter of the company's workforce).
The results demonstrate a considerable potential for win-win scenarios from homeworking:
- over one-third of staff said they were more productive
- 2,000 hours of commuting time (and energy) were saved, leading to an environmental saving of 12.2t CO2eq
- 16% slept longer than usual and 14% spent additional time with their families
- the resulting increase in load arising from the greater use of virtual private networks to connect with company servers from outside the building was planned for 'intensively' and caused no bottleneck disruptions, or additional load on Telefonica UK's IT helpdesk.
The trial was touted as a way of testing the readiness of Telefonica UK's contingency plans for preparation for the summer Olympic Games, but is, in reality, also a part of its three-year sustainability plan. The company itself reported the pilot to have been an 'astonishing success' and a 'demonstration of the power of flexible working to forge lasting operational, cultural and environmental change within modern organisations'.
Telefonica UK will, according to its own press release on the day of the pilot, share the outcomes from the project with other organisations planning similar remote working moves in preparation for the Olympics.
Telefonica UK now just needs to sort out 2012 pay for managers and professionals now - with all these savings and a desire for 'lasting change', it has the resource to go with the reason to do so...