Telecommuting is an agreement where in an employee works from home as opposed to working from the central office building. This is a very common practice in a globalised world that is commonly referred to as - working from home. Telecommuting gained its strength from technology where in a geographically distant employee could easily work from another location.
Currently, keeping human resources in view - working from home is also used a good practice by organisation to maintain work life balance for employees. Organisations like Proctor and Gamble give the managers the option to work from home on any one day of the week. Employees across the organisations mix up their annual leaves with the work from days and manage their vacations as well.
When teams collaborate from across the world - there are many cases wherein the employees work from the work station from home. They are given the requisite technological support and it is in fact encouraged that they work in this fashion. The time wasted in daily commute is saved as anyway the working hours of such employees are in sync with those of their counter parts in other parts of the world. This set up saves as lot of resources for the organisation.
The media richness theory encapsulates the drawbacks of telecommunicating. As per this theory - face to face interactions alone provide an opportunity to resolve certain issues and process information better and that technology can never completely outdo the need for such interactions.
a. Benefits communities as it ensures more employment. It also gives the employee the chance to manage their time appropriately, for example work from home parents.
b. Environmental benefits due to reduced traffic congestion and lesser green house gases.
c. As per Job characteristic theory, the relationship between the job satisfaction and unique characteristics of the job are really strong. In case of telecommuting autonomy and flexibility are critical and positive characteristics that give the employee as sense of empowerment and eventually keep him motivated and positively affect his work.