Nortel Measures Its Telework Payoff
Work & Family Newsbrief, Sept, 2003

Nortel now has 12,000 teleworkers out of a staff of 35,000; the telework program is nine years old, and they've measured the results.

Nearly all of their teleworkers (94%) report that their productivity is up, and 65% of managers agree with them, with the average increase from 15% to 20%. Nortel calculates that a 15% increase is equivalent to 1.2 hours more productivity per day, and applying that to the 3,000 full-time telecommuters adds up to about $325,000 a day (most of their remote workers are manager-level employees). Their remote employees are 11% more satisfied, they say, and 41% more motivated than their in-office colleagues.

One compensation analyst who has been working from her home office since the program began points out an unexpected advantage. She works with highly sensitive information, and says working from home actually provides security benefits. The information is always tightly controlled, whether in the office or at home. But at home there's no chance that someone could be looking over her shoulder.

Finally, for each office-based worker they estimate a cost of nearly $24,000 a year, while home-based employees cost a little more than $3,000. So Nortel figures its remote work program saves more than $20,000 per worker on office expense alone

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