I suspect not anything like as many as you’d hope. While remote working has caught on increasingly in recent years it’s actually not anything like as widespread as one might imagine. Consequently, thousands of people who are off sick could be without a broadband connection and would be unable to fulfill their daily duties.
The failure of companies to come around to the practice is especially surprising given the cost-savings it can can deliver – something you’d have thought would have had millions of under-pressure small to medium sized enterprises clamouring to improve their systems.
According to Nick Manion, commercial director of elitetele.com – which specialises in business broadband and phone systems - there are other advantages, too. Not least of which is an increase in productivity and an improvement in employee retention.
It remains to be seen whether swine flu will be a catalyst for a sea change in business practice. But for the sake of employees’ work/life balances alone, I’d like to think it will be.