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Productivity Cited as Greatest Telecommuting Benefit to Fairfield County Businesses

Productivity gains, reduced turnover and less traffic congestion rank as the first, second and third greatest benefits of telecommuting, according to the Connecticut Business & Industry Association's (CBIA's) "2006 Fairfield/Westchester County Business Survey."

This is great news for the state's Telecommute Connecticut program, which has worked diligently over the past seven years to gain recognition and make an impact on Connecticut's roadways. It's working!

Accelerating Growth
Employers are beginning to embrace the concept of telecommuting and increasingly understand the benefits. In fact, experts believe the rate of telecommuting will increase 60% by the year 2010. That will take nearly 190,000 cars off Connecticut roadways one or more days a week.

Benefits to Employers
Traffic is consistently top of mind among Fairfield County business leaders, making telecommuting a reasonable option. In addition, employers are noticing a variety of benefits from telecommuting that directly impact the bottom line, including:

Productivity: Telecommuters and their managers report that workers get more done when out of the office. The average increase in productivity nationwide is 20%.

Employee Retention: Many companies use telecommuting as a perk to attract and retain top talent.

Business Continuity: Companies with telecommuters remain operational in spite of the environment, weather or other disasters that may keep employees out of the office.

Expanded Recruiting Options: Home-based work gives organizations the ability to attract a wider range of workers, including the physically challenged, parents with young children, people with elder-care responsibilities and members of dual-career families.

Reduced Absences: According to the National Center for Health Statistics, colds force American workers to miss 20 million workdays a year. The flu accounts for another 70 million missed workdays. Telecommuters continue to work at home with a cold or other minor ailments that may have kept them out of the office. Also, fewer sick employees at work reduces the spread of germs and illnesses around the office.

Reduced Overhead: Telecommuting enables employers to have employees who are only in the office occasionally to share workspaces. It also reduces the need for parking spaces and alleviates the need for office expansion as the workforce expands.

Productivity Success Story
Stirling Benefits in Milford is one of the many Telecommute Connecticut success stories. In 2002, the company had a valuable employee they wanted to retain and asked Telecommute Connecticut to work with them to implement a pilot program. After 90 days, the review showed the employee's productivity increased 65%. She had a 1% error rate and took over the work of an entire department. This exceptional case demonstrates what's possible in terms of productivity.

Jean Stimolo is the project manager of Telecommute Connecticut, a commuter service of the Connecticut Department of Transportation, which provides employers with free assistance to design, develop and implement telecommuting programs. The program's ultimate goal is to decrease traffic congestion, energy consumption and air pollution throughout the state. For more information, contact 1-800-255-7433.

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