Record number of Swedes to work outside office this summer

– More and more people are choosing to move their workplace to the garden or balcony This summer the Swedes will set a new record for working outside the office. The reason: they feel better when they do it and they do not have to spend time commuting. According to a fresh survey by Telia, which polled approximately 1,700 people in Sweden, nine out of ten are planning to work outside the office this summer. One out of three said they will telecommute more this year than in 2006, when two out of ten planned to work more outside the office.

The Swedish people’s interest in working outside the office has increased considerably during the past year with 89 percent of the respondents in Telia’s survey stating that they are planning on working some time outside the office this summer, an increase of 15 percent over last year. Young people in particular (under the age of 35) have a strong interest in telecommuting, with 41 percent stating that they will work more outside the office than last year. One out of two people in the survey (53 percent) are planning to work outside the office one to three days per week.

“Many of us work hard to get all the pieces of our daily life in place in order to create a healthy balance between our work, family life and leisure time. Modern technology and today’s mobile solutions make it easier for us to use our time in the smartest way possible. Many companies have realised this and are encouraging their employees to work in the location that suits them best. Companies and employees both benefit from this,” says Håkan Dahlström, Head of Mobility Services at TeliaSonera Sweden.

Working outside the office during the summer is pleasant and feels nice, said 42 percent of the respondents in the survey. Saving time by not commuting, and being able to take advantage of fine weather, were also given as good reasons for working outside the office (20 percent and 17 percent, respectively). A mere 1 percent said they work away from the office to avoid their boss or colleagues.

During the actual holiday period, almost four out of ten people said they will read work-related e-mail a few times a week and one out of three will check their mail once or twice a day. Missing an important e-mail (53 percent), and experiencing it less stressful to have constant control over their e-mail (36 percent), were given as the two most important reasons. Only 3 percent will check their e-mail because their supervisor expects them to.

“It is important to take time off and relax during the holiday period but many still choose to check their work-related mail from time to time during their holiday because it is easier to relax when they know what’s going on,” says Håkan Dahlström.

Top 5 reasons why Swedes want to work outside the office

1. It is a nice way to work that makes them feel good (42%)

2. They can avoid commuting to the office (20%)

3. They can enjoy good weather (17%)

4. Low activity at workplace (16%)

5. Opportunity to spend time with the children (15%)

Top 5 reasons why Swedes read their work-related e-mail when they are off work

1. To know what is going on and not miss important messages (53%)

2. Because it is less stressful to have constant control over their e-mail (36%)

3. To avoid a pile of unread e-mail after the holiday period (35%)

4. Their customers expect it (20%)

5. Because they are curious (9%)

About the Telia Summer Trends Survey 2007

For the fourth consecutive year, Telia has conducted an online survey of its customers in Sweden to poll them about summer working trends. A total of 1,710 people participated in the 2007 survey. The respondents included managing directors, IT managers and other employees at companies of varying size with ten to more than 500 employees. All of Sweden is represented in the survey, which was conducted May 16-25, 2007.