Telecommuting, Work from Home and Economic Change
This chapter discusses the prospects for the growth of telecommuting - of work done remotely, by assumption in the home, on the basis of directives given and output transmitted over the telecommunications network. It considers the implications for the organizational aspects of work generated by efforts to relocate the performance of tasks to a decentralized location. Telecommuting is also potentially costly in non-time resource terms. Relevant capital equipment must be acquired and charges met for use of the telecommunications network. If the household must bear any of these costs, they may be viewed as resource costs akin to fares or petrol costs associated with physical commuting. Yet firms as households' clients in purchasing information services clearly have an important role in determining outcomes. The chapter analyzes the factors underlying the potential rate of increase of telecommuting given a technological change which permits information-processing work to be done remotely.