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The Telework Research Network calculates that a typical two-day-a-week telecommuter in Canada can save an average of $2,000 (Canadian) a year in vehicle and work-related costs .

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A review by the Telework Research Network of about 2,000 studies from the past decade concludes employees who work outside of the office can have higher productivity because of:

Fewer interruptions Working independently reduces distractions of working in a busy office and cuts time spent in idle chatter and lunch breaks.

Better time management E-mail and text messages are more immediate and less apt to digress into non-work topics.

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Greater flexibility Mobility allows employees to work when they are most productive.

More time for work Studies show mobile workers apply an average of 60 per cent of the time that they save by not having to commute to doing productive work.

Reduced down time Employees don't have to lose a full day's productivity when they're sick, recovering from surgery, caring for a loved one or attending to personal business.

Greater efficiency Employees who are trained to work remotely are more adept at using technology to communicate and collaborate more efficiently.

The studies also suggest mobile employees may be happier because of:

Better balance A worldwide study by Brigham Young University showed that telecommuters were able to work 57 hours a week before they felt their job interfered with their personal life. Traditional workers felt conflicted at just 37 hours.

Increased confidence Empowerment, trust and accountability are fundamental to remote work and are keys to job satisfaction.

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They avoid stress Commuting and office politics can often be emotionally draining.

They save time and money The Telework Research Network calculates that a typical two-day-a-week telecommuter in Canada can save an average of $2,000 (Canadian) a year in vehicle and work-related costs and gain the equivalent of nine work days a year in time they'd have otherwise spent commuting.

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About the Author

Wallace Immen is an award-winning staff writer for The Globe and Mail whose stories about workplace trends and career advice, as well as about cruising and travel destinations around the world appear regularly in print and on-line. He has worn many hats in his career with the Globe, including science writer, medical writer and columnist, urban affairs reporter and travel writer. More


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