The commute can be an enormously painful experience for those subjected to long, overcrowded journeys. In some hotspots, commuters are faced with awful conditions, and nearly 140,000 workers heading into London every morning are forced to stand – despite paying thousands of pounds per year for the privilege. In some instances conditions are so bad that commuters have to seek refuge in the cleaning cupboard, which is hardly the ideal setting to enjoy the latest Serial podcast.
Beyond the mild infuriation it causes, commuting could also have harmful effects on workers’ health, with the NHS saying it lowers well-being. With that in mind, there are important questions to be asked about whether marketers and other professionals still need to put in so much face-time at the office.
Technology has advanced to the extent that workers are able to be extremely productive while working remotely – or ‘telecommuting’. Most areas of Britain now enjoy high speed internet, technological devices are relatively inexpensive, and there have been huge advances in remote working and collaborative cloud software. EMR’s forthcoming 2016 salary survey shows that under half of marketers currently have access to flexitime or telecommuting – showing there is still a long way to go in the industry before it becomes the norm.
While full-remote working may not allow all marketers to fulfil all their duties yet, organisations and HR departments should increasingly look to it as a long-term way to boost happiness and reduce the cost of expensive office space.