Tina Hedlund
Comtech Services, Inc.

In the most recent CIDM-sponsored survey on telecommuting, many managers stated that they allow telecommuting to promote a balance between work and family life.

Although this balance may be a corporate goal stated by organizations, recent evidence presented by Dr. David Finegold at the January 2001 World Economic Forum suggests that work/life balance does not contribute to retention. High-tech employees do state that a work/life balance is the most important goal to them, but after running a multiple regression analysis on his data, Dr. Finegold found that work/life balance did not contribute significantly to high-tech employees staying at a particular company. They are much more likely to stay with a company for career advancement, financial rewards based on company performance (like stock options), and innovation and risk. Because the goal of a work/life balance may not contribute to retention, departments that offer telecommuting for this reason may need to reassess the reasons they allow telecommuting.

If you are interested in the full analysis of the CIDM telecommuting survey, you can read it in the June issue of the Best Practices newsletter.

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Read Jakob Nielsen’s article, Retaining Key Staff: What High-Tech Employees Say versus What They Do