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Swap the commute for the countryside

Find out how remote working will provide new opportunities for people living all over the UK, enabling us to make more intelligent decisions about where we live and work.

Making flexible working more available could have profound effects on not just the way people work, but where people live. People commuting less and choosing to live in smaller, less developed towns and villages throughout the country could have a significant impact on local economies and the environment.


Our recent report into flexible working shows that most people believe it’s currently important to live near a city in order to access jobs. That’s even more true for the younger members of the workforce, who are trying to get their foot on the ladder. But, as anyone who has ever spent time in central London will be aware, living in cities incurs extra costs. And the housing market can be prohibitive for many.


Not to mention, the city lifestyle isn’t for everyone. In our new research, we found that 49% of Generation Y respondents would prefer to live somewhere more rural. Many of them feel they’re not currently able to, because they have to be near the office. If people could choose where they live, seaside towns would attract twice as many residents and the number of people moving to the countryside would jump from 3% to 12%.



Workers could spend more time with their families, people could enjoy wider, greener spaces, more equality and economy of land could be achieved. Given that 62% of workers typically live a half hour’s commute from their office, if the need to travel there on a daily basis were removed, it would cause massive social change that could affect everything about our daily lives, from public health to politics.


Businesses could make huge savings by not having to rent office spaces in large cities. More valuable investments could be made, supplying people with the tools they need in order to work effectively from home. Employers could expect people’s homes to become less distracting, therefore more suited to productivity, as workers will be under less pressure to house-share or to live in cramped, busy environments.


And, we could expect to see an end to gridlocked traffic around rush-hour. Without the need for commuting, on average people would save an hour of every day, which could either be spent on improving their wellbeing, or adding value to the business. According to our report, if an employee worked just one less day at the office every week, by the end of the year they will have saved almost £450.


If your organisation is ready to explore the possibilities of adopting a flexible working model, get in touch with O2 Business. We can help you find the best solutions for security, connectivity and productivity that fit needs of your individual organisation while giving your employees the freedom to work from anywhere.

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