Working away from the office leads to lower stress levels in employees.
That is the finding of a new Durham Business School study titled ‘Location, location, location: Does place of work really matter?’ The study comprised a survey of 749 UK-based professionals from knowledge vocations such as consulting, accounting, finance and media.
For workers who toiled solely in the office, 65% reported feeling a high level of work-related stress. This figure fell to 43% for respondents who worked at home for at least 20 hours per week.
Research co-author Tom Redman says: “It seems that working from home is an antidote to the stresses of office-based working.” Home workers were found to have a better work-life balance and be less prone to burn-out. On the flip side, employees were concerned that office absence leaves them outside professional networks and can harm career development.
The study also dispelled employer doubts over the commitment of home workers to go beyond the call of duty.
“As working from home does not harm an employee’s commitment and has real benefits for staff, our argument is that a lot of duties can be done electronically thanks to email and the internet,” says Redman.