Building The Digital Footprint For The ‘Anywhere Office’
Many experts have weighed in on the benefits of a more flexible working model that combines the buzz of office collaboration and team building with the convenience and productivity of working from home. By focusing more on what makes a healthier, more functional workplace, we can reduce stress and drive up productivity. A win-win for employers and employees with other benefits including lower commuting costs and travel time, and savings on office space costs.
“According to a OnePoll national survey Truespeed commissioned of 2,000 parents, 92 per cent of respondents would be ‘lost’ without the internet at home.”
Digital island hopping
Flexible working can also help to level-up the UK and reduce geographic inequality by boosting opportunities in areas away from major conurbations. The government-backed Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) and jobs website Indeed recently analysed nearly 20 million job applications and found that offering flexible working explicitly in job ads would increase applications by up to 30% and create at least 174,000 flexible jobs in the UK economy per year.
But for this workplace recalibration to take off nationwide, people need access to the right digital tools and the right digital foundations - wherever they choose to live and work. Therefore, ultra-reliable, ultrafast connectivity is a must.
The broadband divide
Even before lockdown, access to reliable broadband was regarded as a crucial part of modern life. According to a OnePoll national survey Truespeed commissioned of 2,000 parents, 92 per cent of respondents would be ‘lost’ without the internet at home. But only a third 36% have a highly reliable home broadband connection, adding to the frustration for those who don’t. Of the two-thirds (67%) of respondents saying they need fast broadband connectivity because they work from home, 28 per cent have had to cope with video calls shuddering, freezing or even dropping out entirely, while 17 per cent have even struggled to get their broadband to cooperate when sending an email.
The Centre for Economics & Business Research claims that the combined impact of a remote workforce and full fibre coverage could see 500,000 people move out of high-density urban areas such as London to live in more rural locations. This would reduce the pressure on housing and transport in major cities, and increase economic opportunity in more remote areas.
Living the full fibre dream
The race is on to ramp up efforts to ensure every citizen has access to fit for purpose modern day broadband. And full fibre broadband is the UK’s future as it’s the gold standard of connectivity - exactly what is required to get back on track as we recover from Covid-19.
By viewing the past year as a catalyst for rethinking the world of work, we can embrace a more sustainable and flexible working model that results in a happier, more productive workforce. Underpinned by a nationwide full fibre network, the anywhere office will become the new reality for employers and employees alike.