Number of Employees Working Off-site Expected to Increase, Executives Say



    TORONTO, Aug. 14 /CNW/ - A growing number of Canadian workers will be
dialling, rather than driving, into work, according to a recent survey. More
than two-thirds (70 per cent) of executives polled said it is common for their
companies' employees to work off-site. Moreover, 74 per cent of managers said
they expect the number of employees who work remotely to increase in the next
five years.
    The study was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by
OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly
skilled administrative professionals. The survey is based on telephone
interviews with 100 senior executives among the largest companies in Canada.
    Executives were asked, "How common is it for employees at your company to
work off-site or from remote locations?" Their responses:

    
           Very common ................................  24%
           Somewhat common  ...........................  46%
           Not common at all ..........................  28%
           Don't know..................................   2%
                                                        ----
                                                        100%

    Executives also were asked, "Do you expect the number of employees who
work off-site or from remote locations to increase or decrease in the next
five years?" Their responses:

           Increase greatly ...........................  17%
           Increase somewhat ..........................  57%
           Stay the same ..............................  23%
           Decrease somewhat ..........................   2%
           Decrease greatly ...........................   0%
           Don't know .................................   1%
                                                        ----
                                                        100%
    

    "High fuel prices are causing people to look for alternatives to lengthy
commutes, and working from home or at locations closer to home are attractive
options," said Dave Willmer, executive director of OfficeTeam. "Technology has
also made it easier for employees to work remotely when traveling for
business."
    In cases where employees request telecommuting or work-from-home
arrangements, Willmer cautions that not every position is a fit. "For
professionals whose jobs require a great deal of face time with colleagues or
customers, working remotely might not be practical."
    OfficeTeam suggests those who want to work off-site ask themselves the
following questions before making the request:

    
    -   Does my company already have a remote work policy? Review your
        employee manual or contact your human resources department to find
        out. If no policy exists, research how other companies like yours
        have established successful remote work arrangements for their staff.

    -   What's in it for them? Managers will respond more favourably to your
        request if they know the arrangement will benefit the company and not
        just you personally. Will the arrangement save your firm money or
        increase productivity?

    -   Have I thought through the details? Your supervisor will want to know
        key information, like why you are a good tele-work candidate,
        technology tools and upgrades you will need, and security measures
        you have in place at home or at your proposed remote work location to
        protect company information.

    -   How self-motivated am I? If you are easily distracted or lack self-
        discipline, working off-site could be challenging.

    -   How will I stay in touch? Think about how you intend to interact with
        colleagues to ensure projects stay on track. Also, offer to provide
        regular status updates so your manager knows your progress on
        assignments.

    -   How will I stay visible? To avoid being overlooked for plum projects
        or promotions, maintain plenty of face time with your managers and
        colleagues. Schedule important meetings for your on-site work days.

    -   How can I show the arrangement will work? Ask your supervisor if you
        can try telecommuting on a trial period, working remotely one or two
        days a week. Propose several meetings with your boss throughout the
        test period so you both can evaluate how the arrangement is working.

    Survey Methodology
    ------------------
    The survey was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by
OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly
skilled administrative professionals. The survey is based on telephone
interviews with 100 randomly selected senior executives at Canada's
1,000 largest companies.

    About OfficeTeam
    ----------------
    OfficeTeam provides businesses with the highly skilled administrative
talent they need to maximize productivity, achieve cost efficiency and support
full-time staff. The staffing firm has more than 300 locations worldwide and
offers online job search services at www.officeteam.com.
    

    EDITOR'S NOTE: To schedule an interview for local commentary in Toronto,
Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton or Vancouver, please contact Jim Dimovski at
416.350.2010, ext. 62024.





For further information:

For further information: Contact: Jim Dimovski, (416) 350-2010


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