Telecommuting, also known as teleworking and e-working, involves working from home and using technology to communicate with the workplace. The technology sector is well suited for telecommuting as many computer experts work in front of a screen. Before the pandemic, over 30 million Americans were already telecommuting at least one day a week. However, the COVID-19 crisis of 2020 and 2021 propelled telecommuting to the fore, with up to 60 million people potentially able to work entirely from home. Many businesses are now considering the cost savings of not having to maintain office space due to the outbreak.
FAQ: Telecommuting and Teleworking
As a concept, telecommuting and teleworking are not new. In fact, working from home while using the phone and computer to communicate with the workplace has been around since the dawn of the twenty-first century. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, telecommuting has been propelled to the forefront of every industry.
WHAT is Telecommuting and Teleworking?
Telecommuting and teleworking are two similar terms that refer to the practice of working from a remote location, typically at home, instead of commuting to the office. Telecommuting is a term that gained popularity in the 1970s as a way to reduce traffic congestion and air pollution. On the other hand, teleworking is a term that is more commonly used in Europe.
Both concepts involve the use of technology to communicate and collaborate with colleagues and employers, often using email, messaging apps, video conferencing, and other tools. The rise of the internet and mobile devices has made telecommuting and teleworking more accessible than ever before, and many companies are adopting these practices to improve employee productivity, reduce overhead costs, and improve work-life balance.
HOW Popular is Telecommuting and Teleworking?
According to a report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 30 million Americans were telecommuting at least one day a week at the start of the twenty-first century. This number has only grown since then, with more companies adopting flexible work policies that allow employees to work from home or other remote locations. However, telecommuting and teleworking are more prevalent in certain industries than others.
The technology sector, for example, is well-suited for telecommuting and teleworking, as much of the work carried out by computer experts can be done in front of a screen. Meanwhile, industries that require face-to-face interaction, such as healthcare and hospitality, may not be as conducive to remote work.
HOW Has COVID-19 Changed Telecommuting and Teleworking?
The COVID-19 crisis of 2020 and 2021 accelerated the trend towards telecommuting and teleworking, with millions of people forced to work from home to prevent the spread of the virus. This sudden shift to remote work has been challenging for many workers and companies, but it has also highlighted the benefits and feasibility of working from home.
According to a report by Global Workplace Analytics, over 60 million Americans have work that can be done entirely from home, which represents about 40% of all white-collar jobs. Many businesses are now considering how much money they can save by not having to maintain office space as a result of the pandemic, while workers are enjoying the flexibility and convenience of working from home.
Telecommuting and teleworking have been around for decades, but the COVID-19 pandemic has brought these concepts to the forefront of every industry. As more workers and companies adopt flexible work policies, it is likely that remote work will become the new normal in many industries, especially as technology continues to improve and evolve.