Drivers who switch to remote working for just three days a week could save up to 14 days of travel time a year, or an average of 2.5 hours per day, according to new research.
Conducted by NoCo, Ireland’s largest hybrid workspace network, and Trinity College Dublin, the research reveals interesting insights into how remote working hubs are impacting our commuting patterns and our carbon footprint, and also shows that 70% of people would consider changing their home location as a result of the ability to work remotely.
A key focus of the research was to measure the potential carbon emissions savings as well as travel time savings. The results indicate that a switch to working from a remote working hub for just three days a week could save a driver up to 14 days of travel time a year, saving approx. 670kg of CO2.
Public transport users would save almost 11 days of commuting time, saving the equivalent of 2.19kg CO2 from these public transport trips.
When travelling to their place of work, 59% of people left home before 7.30am however nearly 80% of people left after 7.30am when travelling to a remote location. 49% said they would consider buying an e-bike for their new trip to their local remote working hub and 14% said they would consider buying a push bicycle. 15% said they are now considering selling a car as a result of this new work dynamic.
38% of people said the ability to spend more time in their local community would be a major benefit if they could switch over to working from a remote hub. NoCo’s service has the potential to boost local economies and encourage more community engagement in towns across Ireland, as well as providing the more rural areas with the opportunity to prosper and grow, both economically and socially.
Prof Brian Caulfield, Department of Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin, said: “Our research clearly shows that remote working hubs may play an even more substantial role than we thought in reducing carbon emissions in the transport field from commuting. From a personal-time perspective, the findings of the survey demonstrate that remote workers are able to spend significantly more time at home and substantially less time commuting”.
NoCo, who recently unveiled an expansion partnership with The National Association of Community Enterprise Centres’ (NACEC) and Enterprise Ireland, is now Ireland’s largest workspace network provider with remote working hubs in over 350 locations nationwide.
While the study indicates a clear desire to have the option of remote working (80% of people believe it’s possible for their employer to implement a hybrid work scheme post-Covid 19), and highlights the potential environmental benefits that could come from it (on average those using a remote hub are travelling 60km less per day), it also revealed some issues that need to be addressed:
Brian Moran, co-founder of NoCo, said: “We are delighted to have worked alongside Trinity College Dublin to carry out this research. The slowdown of economic activities during the pandemic resulted in significant improvements to air quality and GHG emissions.
"None of us can afford to ignore our carbon footprints anymore and we believe that the shift to remote working will help to meet Ireland’s national carbon targets, aswell as provide people with reduced commuting time and a better work/life balance.”
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