HBR article finds benefits of “working from anywhere” even greater than “working from home”

HBR article finds benefits of “working from anywhere” even greater than “working from home”

Harvard study examines work from anywhere vs. work from home vs. working from an office and uncovers new findings.


A team from Harvard used 8 years of data from the US Patent & Trademark Office to examine the difference in outcomes between  work-from-home (WFH) vs. work-from-anywhere (WFA) programs. Here’s what they found: 

-WFA employees who lived within a reasonable distance from colleagues, may form remote connections which, in one department (the Art department) led to increased productivity

-They confirmed earlier research showing productivity was higher for all remote workers

-The productivity increase was greatest among WFA workers (4.4% percentage points higher than WFH), and lowest among WFH who lived >50 miles from the office (with the productivity increase among those who lived <50 miles from the office falling in between)

-Older WFA workers were more likely to move out of the region (Alexandria) than younger WFA workers, but both groups experienced a reduction in their cost-of-living 


-For remote workers whose job required significant interaction with colleagues, having a mandated set of IT tools increased productivity even further (3%) 

-There was no decline in quality among either group of remote workers


The study estimated the outcomes of PTO’s remote worker program to include $1.3B in increased productivity, $38M in real estate savings, reduced travel totaling 84 million miles, and reducing emissions by 44k tons.



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