Increase in home-working employees by 19% over the past decade

Published: 2017-06-05

TUC (Trades Union Congress) published at the end of May 2017 that the number of employees who say they usually work from home has increased by fifth over last 10 years. The analysis was published to mark National Work from Home Day.

Let’s start with statistics:

  • 1 in 16 people worked form home in 2016 that’s an increase of 7.7% on the year before
  • 10.5% increase in women working from home 
  • 966,000 men regularly work from home, compared to 673,000 women -that’s only in 2016
  • 1 in 13 workers in forties and fifties are homeworkers 
  • 1 in 36 workers (168,000) in their twenties regularly work from home
  • 1 in 11 workers in South West its regular homeworker 
  • 1 in 13 employees in the East of England works form home
  • 1 in 14 in the South East works from home
  • 1 in 33 In Northern Ireland - that’s the lowest proportion in the UK

So, which type of industry, employees are most likely to work from home. The most likely to work from home are IT technicians, followed by Agriculture and Construction that’s 1 in 6 of those workers are homeworkers.

The government research also shows that another 4 million UK employees would want to work from home for at least some time of their working week, but are not given the chance.

Let’s have a look at the benefits of homeworking. Homeworking can save time and money on the commutes which is also environmentally friendly if we drive to work, give more flexibility over working time. Also makes it easier for parents and the carers. You can make more time for your family. It’s said is also less stressful environment and quieter atmosphere. Working from home can be less distracting and with this more productive.

Let’s have a look at Disadvantages. As we all know when you work from home you are all alone, which can be nice to have full concentration on what you are doing. However, often professionals who work from home complain of isolation and loneliness and this can be very depressing to some. Although office distractions are avoided by working from home but different distraction may arise like children, neighbours, friends and family may be disruptive and special efforts must be made. Also, difficult separating work from home, this include the temptation in household matters. Since there is no one looking over your shoulder enforcing strict working hours you may feel tempted to work endlessly. You may feel removed form important developments as you are not that often in the office so all news are going past you. The danger of being over looked for promotion and career development opportunities is quite real when you are not visible as an employee.

To work from home, you need to have high self-discipline and be highly dedicated to what you are doing. Working from home is definitely not for everyone.

TUC also says “Home-working is also an important way for disabled people to access the labour market. Around 160,000 people with a disability currently work from home.”

What other advise have for us TUC? Trades Union Congress warns that homeworkers must be properly supported. Homeworkers additional bills should be covered, and they should have access to the right equipment. 

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