Teleworking in Australia: Latest Trends and Perceptions

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Teleworking and telecommuting are concepts (and terms) that have been around since the early 1970’s, but have become a recent reality for many as technology and work culture are shifting.  By 2020, through the completion of the National Broadband Network, the government aims to provide greater opportunities for Australians to work remotely, with the aim for 12 percent of all public servants to regularly telecommute.

A recent McCrindle Research survey of over 580 Australians shows that Australians are eager to make significant changes to their working styles, embracing the freedom to work from home or remote of their primary location of work.

Most would stay longer if offered teleworking

80% of those surveyed stated that they would more likely stay longer with an existing employer should that employer provide them with the flexibility of working remotely or from home. Women expressed this in a greater capacity than men, with 82% of women agreeing this to be true for them, compared to 78% of men. The desire for flexible working arrangements was greatest among full-time workers, 86% of whom expressed the potential for increased longevity in their current role should teleworking be made available to them.

Most would take a pay cut for teleworking

Most employees (52% of men and 51% of women) are prepared to forego a percentage of their pay in exchange for greater flexibility in their working arrangements. While a lesser percentage of Baby Boomers showed such a capacity to forego pay, still almost half (46%) of them would be prepared to put a price on flexibility.

28% of Australians would be willing to earn 5% less for significant flexibility, and 14% of Australians would be willing to earn around 10% less to telework. 1 in 16 Australians would even be willing to compromise 20% of their pay – an entire day’s pay on a full-time load – in exchange for the opportunity to work remotely or from home.

Most are more productive working from home

55% of Australians reported being slightly or significantly more productive working from home than in an office environment. Productivity from home increases with age: While only 45% of Gen Ys report being more productive from home, this number rises to 52% for Gen Xs and 61% for the Baby Boomers. The Builder generation, those 68 and older, report the greatest personal productivity in a home-working environment, with 73% of them reporting greater personal productivity.

Australians spend most of their time working in one location

46% of Australians currently spend all of their working time in their primary location of work. 31% spend anywhere up to 20% of their time working from a remote location, 13% spend between 20 and 80% working remotely, and 10% of Australians work remotely more than 80% of their working time.

1 in 5 Australians work in 3 or more locations

While employers have shown a greater degree of flexibility for telecommuting than in the past, 54% of Australians still work from one central office location. However, 25% of Australians have a second location from which they conduct at least one hour’s work every week, 12% of Australians have 3 or 4 locations that they are based from, and 10% of Aussie workers work across 5 or more locations every single week.

Most want to do some work from home

When given the choice, 78% Aussies expressed a desire to spend at least a certain amount of their time working from home. Of these, 36% expressed a desire to work mainly in the workplace but partly at home, 24% desired to work half their working time in both places, and 40% expressed that they would like to work mainly at home and partly at home.

81% of those employed on a part-time basis showed a desire to work at home at some capacity, compared to only 70% of those who are employed full-time.

More popular and productive for introverts

The benefit of teleworking for introverts is greater than for extroverts. Introverts are 30% more productive working from home than extroverts. If given the choice, over a third of introverts (34%) would choose to work mainly at home and only partly in the workplace, whereas only 1 in 5 extroverts (22%) would choose the same. Conversely, extroverts are 32% more likely than introverts to want to work mainly in the workplace and only partly at home.

But gathering centrally is still essential

In terms of culture and output, the majority of Australians value the group collective, stating that in order to promote the best team outcomes, times for gathering and brainstorming as well as the capacity to work with varying degrees of flexibility is key. Only 18% of Australians feel that collective productivity is greatest when everyone is working in one place with no teleworking options. Over two thirds of Aussies (68%) stated that the culture and output of a workplace is best when everyone is working in one place with a degree of flexibility for teleworking, or when there is a time for gathering and working together but also a significant time for working remotely. Only 1 in 10 Australians would say that productivity is best when workers largely work independently with occasional gathering, and very few Australians (4%) report seeing no need for workers to gather in order to achieve maximum output or develop cultural cohesion.

About this Study: This research was conducted by McCrindle Research in May 2013 based on a nationwide study of 586 respondents.

Click here for the full report:

Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


couple budget English emerging generations baby names australia report cooking Myth baby boomers 2014 hornsby Skilling leadership workshop demographic transformations Research Director future etiquette population map school students tattoos sunny days water university research waverton charity online program easy rider investor bureau menai lalor park selfie women church award volunteers google demographer wellbeing local communities commute story cartodb ABS paying to work Mark McCrindle marrickville generational trends school February 16 SMSF contiki bus gen alpha outsourcing ashley mckenzie SMART organisations Australian communities professional 2016 census results Merry Christmas property market suburban living baby names report learning styles Adelaide energy workplace culture rent conference environmental scanning buildings pharmacy investing futurist educhat VET home owner market research curiosity product young australians medicine manly Do It Yourself innovation Hills Shire Council baby name trends new york times rental stress Christmas season living land of the middle class social research generation alpha future of education society trends financial independence students TED government affordable publication FPA slideshare perth personal growth generations small business education future report mccrindle tea Australia street twentyseventeen conference presentation logan urban taskforce ACF2017 prince george house price long weekend Macquarie University conference speaker eliane national crime rates graphs business index ageing population Royals TED talk commuters baby boom global generations quote speaker DIY average sydneysider language TAS sector wide study property christmas screenage food lifestyle woolworths university degree technology ageing office World Water Day in depth interviews study cultural diversity business interactive sector wide Northern beaches Event list Aussies house prices communities geomapping newspaper financial dreams Australian Census youth unemployment Northern Beaches Christian School Love communications faux-cilise personalities office opening unemployment speakers innovative Crime Rates educated resource retirement rich New Zeland Channel Seven media commentary urban living index trends of 2017 news cost of living research report tableau hello fresh future proof stay home royal influence employment engagement hills census McCrindle Speakers forecast rule keeper social shifts social trends 40 million mobile shopping Australian Home visualisation Sydney not for profit case study global cloudy days weather EFF NSW NBRS Architecture leadership overcast Word Up national private wealth hobart social analysis brisbane internship VIC travelling showreel capital city 1980 moreton bay responsive experience income 24,000,000 proactive population growth focus group ipswich media release Kirsten Brewer life ferry 10 years norwest Queensland: QLD infographic wall Western Australia rise of local suburb wolloomooloo mccrindle in the media learning divorce rate customer Sydney keynote speaker celebration children REIV Conference house price rise Territory shifts researcher demographics 2017 names education research Wagga Wagga visual tea FOMO criminal Melbourne grandparents data housing market survey design kate middleton survey authenticity leader work-life consumerism entertainment ease of travel 2016 research data Valentine’s Day work cars domestic "know the times" debt ultimo challenge New South Wales hills shire hopes community gender The Daily Edition Christmas presents seasons affordability marriage wages vegetarian click poor residents trends analyst culture rising house prices growing population sector parents workshop Sydney Hills Business Chamber WA earnings rain young people urban living collaborative research pack dream social census data careers pharmacies holiday summer staff baby names friends Tuesday Trend social media the changing face of royal define research visualisation gold coast national wealth 2013 blaxland identity education ACF17 23 million data visualisation business performance Northern Beaches shopping centre trend Education Future Forum google for education sun Vocational education stats tuesday cancelling plans the great screenage future of shopping 2020 greatness Charlotte social issues daily commute goals social life household Australia Day 2017 1994 Australians cost state entrepreneurs of today clothing dare to dream wealth and income high density year 7 CPI Population Clock teachers brand experience The ABC of XYZ easter Australia Day increasing densification equip social lives GPO social commentator fresh population future proofing child care Wellington tips the hills shire sydney event James Ward optus VET sector father's day sunburnt country earning facts census 2016 professional development aussie culture crows nest housing growth NBRS in the media event marketing victoria unaffordable motivate insight men 1975 eliane miles Australian demographics micro apartments faith Real Estate Institute of Victoria coffee monarchy plans 2016 census sydneycity teacher mythbusting workplace families storytelling teleworking NEETs relevant renting skills research services emerging technologies potts point SA presentation spirituality Generation X know the times Canberra cold speakers pack ethnography award winner millionth participants Aussie data analyst Research Executive toys internet Andrew Duffin middle class healthy future future of work ashley fell tertiary education Financial Planning Association Gen X PSI sydney hills australian social research mythbusters Tasmania socialising community engagement social commentary group session analysis global financial crisis trades high school sydney speaker social researchers christian events states presentations repayments housing trends professional services royal family media activity Duchess of Cambridge nfp brand group anzac Deaths Australian Dream typical australian cica social impact change Australian Trends baby name Australian schools train urban royal baby weekly earnings schools resilience omnibus Australian Population housing capital cities cancelling event sustainable australian finance communicate meals going out apartment faux-ciliser population milestone the hills post rationalism dessert cultural diveristy alpha fears recap marriages average Australian Generation Y socialites insights new office student poker master media education future Real Estate January 26th office space low density meetings offenders wealth public speaker balance australian communities trends report housing affordability trends of 2016 learner wealth and income distribution society Australian Bureau of Statistics goal belief SRE Queensland home ownership digital breakfast the australian dream ACF 2016 school satisfaction demographic trends Channel 7 report Hornsby Shire Council tv crime REIV National Conference Christchurch divorce Kiwi economy census fail demography safe holidays area darwin gen z households debate HSC public speaking investment TEDx employers litter village deloitte high density living communication house follow religion Assistant Store Manager shopper's pick Geoff Brailey mover and shaker huffington post schools students apartments networking impact 2012 System's Architect online shopping aged care South Australia Social Trend trend tuesday faux-cilising engage Northern Territory Christmas lunch teaching 24 million world youth day internships ACT financial fears youth high density apartments sentiments CBD australian communities forum panel community event millenials NT ACF Bathburst aged care puzzle training 1968 entrepreneurial mccrindle conferences wage owning a home statistics wealth distribution purpose collaboration princess charlotte DESTEL changing face of sydney public holiday learn growth economic Caregiver australia real Financial Planning Association of Australia Wodonga friendship cash grave decision chairty daily telegraph professional presenters acf15 travel optus my business awards Netflix micro family future-proof infographic education sector financial future builders mccrindle research emerging trends vegemite non profit mortgage generation social researcher the average aussie Tuesday Trends average aussie sydneysiders mentor shbc career bondi forecasting Australian Families politics annual income social enquiry financial australians staying home more local community ideas work mates workforce year 12 culturally diverse Financial Planning Week home forum 2015 world census results organisational culture salary Australian Communities Trends brands cancel plans not-for-profit TDE mateship trends parenting winter local teach results intern moderators guide snapshot city wedding demographic neutral bay supply and demand earn #censusfail property price millennials baby name predictions happiness mining boom suburbs priorities Res Vis spend sydney metro Work place keynote speaker dreaming narcissism megatrends JOMO renter of the future townhouses mother's day professional speaker jobs Engineering Manager qualitative research transport winter blues baby entrepreneur New Zealand Gen Y focus groups video social change generation Z jobs of the future IT Specialists car keynote optimistic sports thought leadership consumer relational infographics sydneysider pyrmont Births Scouts environment thrive staying in christianity