The statistical evidence on telecommuting suggests that (1) sometimes people just like to work from home for a change, and (2) they're actually quite good at it
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has officially banned the company's employees from working from home. Here's the critical sentence: "To become the absolute best place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we need to be working side-by-side. That is why it is critical that we are all present in our offices." The full memo, originally published by All Things D, is reprinted in full at the bottom of this article.
Collaboration and communication is tricky to quantify (how do you know if your employees are talking more over Gchat/conversations in the office or from home?) But productivity isn't so hard to measure. It's work over time. And some studies have shown that working from home can make certain workers more productive.
The most commonly cited study in the field of home-work and productivity comes from Stanford. The results were clear: Telecommuting is nothing to be afraid of. Workers at a Chinese travel agency took fewer breaks and sick-days, answered more calls every minute, and reported improved work satisfaction when they worked from home. Later, the agency allowed the employees in the experiment to choose if they wanted to work from home, and productivity increased by 22%.