Remote Working Officially vs Unofficially – It Matters

by Mike Hunter

A survey, commissioned by the inventor of virtual network computing, RealVNC, found that, in a significant number of large U.S. enterprises that do not officially permit remote working, remote working happens unofficially. This indicates that not permitting remote working is putting data security and privacy at risk by encouraging unofficial access that often involves personal devices and apps. With 49 percent of respondents’ organizations that do not offer remote working identifying security as a major reason for not adopting a policy, there is a clear disconnect between what is a perceived risk and the actual risk of putting policies in place to permit flexible working. 

The survey, for which technology research firm Vanson Bourne polled 200 IT decision makers from U.S. enterprises, was conducted to look at businesses’ use of remote working in developing a diverse workforce. Approximately two-thirds (65 percent) of respondents do, in fact, believe implementing remote working would increase the number of staff they attract with disabilities, while a further 63 percent and 53 percent believe it would help employ more 18- to 35-year-olds and females, respectively. However, while remote access technologies are widely available. 20 percent of organizations do not have an official policy in place that allows for flexibility in work location, and 36 percent of these businesses do not offer remote working due to current company policies restricting its adoption.

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