Telecommuting or travelling to offices in off-peak times could cut the pressure on rail networks, in addition to improving staff productivity.
A study of 260 workers conducted by Swiss incumbent Swisscom, rail operator SBB, and the University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) in February and March found that 66% could commute off peak, and the combination of working at home or on the move increases productivity from 14% to 21%.
Based on the results, the FHNW estimates that pressure on rush hour trains could be eased by 7%, if 20% of commuters shift to off peak travel.
“Such changes in behavior are an important addition to planned expansion as a way of addressing the predicted increase in demand for traffic and transport,” notes Bernhard Meier, SBB's Director Public and Regulatory Affairs representative.
In addition to the potential travel benefits, the study shows 53% of staff are more motivated when given flexible working options.
"The findings of the study show that flexible work models can increase satisfaction and productivity," says
Alexander Senn, Swisscom's head of recruitment and employability, says staff have been freed from their offices by “mobile internet access and integrated communication.”