I must admit that I thought high level thinking around flexible working was way off in the distance, but the added pressure and problems that the Olympics might bring has spurred companies into action and one really exciting piece of news today was that O2, one of the largest UK companies in telecoms, trialled sending one quarter of its entire company to work from home.
That’s over 2000 employees all working from home.
I think most people would consider this to be utterly ridiculous, but the forward thinking company just continued to run as normal and in fact most consumers didn’t even know this was happening.
It only goes to show that this is a possible solution and they are already talking about rolling this out in a more substantial scale after this initial test.
What’s really encouraging is that large companies are keen to test this new way of working because there a lots of positive effects that come from it.
- Increased productivity
- cost savings
- lower carbon emissions
- happier employees
O2 already run a scheme for remote working and in its company offices in Slough, they have desk space for 550 which is way below the actual employee count at that office of nearly 2500.
By doing this they have reduced their carbon emissions by 53%.
I’m already thinking how this is going to be a tipping point for remote working. The fact that the Olympics is causing this massive rethink is going to challenge many companies and in this changeover, there will be winners and losers.
The important thing to understand is that it is entirely possible, it is all down to solving the issues around it and soon you’ll have an officeless company as well.