While work-life balance and improved inclusivity are some of the known benefits of working from home, a study suggested that remote work saves around 72 minutes of global commuters each day. The workers spend the saved time by splitting between their jobs, leisure, and caregiving.
Work from home is saving the most time for employees in China, where forgoing the trek to and from one’s workplace is freeing up 102 minutes a day, revealed a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Whereas staff in Serbia witnessed the smallest savings of 51 minutes, even less than the US employees, who saw a comparatively low 55 minutes spare.
The research calculated daily commute times from surveys of workers across 27 countries in the past two years. This research was conducted by a team of economists from Europe, Mexico, and the US —including Stanford University’s Nicholas Bloom.
“Commuters strongly dislike unpredictable travel times, and automobile drivers strongly dislike congested road conditions. Thus, long commutes, unpredictable commute times, and congested road conditions push the private value of time savings above the after-tax wage," the economists said.
Not just workers, businesses are the biggest beneficiaries of travel time savings, with workers devoting 40% of their saved time toward primary and secondary jobs. About a third went toward leisure activities and 11% went to caregiving, the study found, revealed the same report.