2011 Marks an Increase in Remote Working

Remote Working in 2011A few months ago, we wrote a blog post about whether or not working from home can help your work/life balance and many of you agreed that it does, however you also highlighted a key challenge: productivity.

Based on the feedback that we received from this post, we decided to take a closer look at what makes a productive home worker and examined the different distractions that come in the way of a productive work day. The list included cons such as feeling obligated to answer personal phone calls, the distracting lure of social media and the lack of a separation from a work and home environment. Despite these challenges, it was clear that many of you favoured the flexibility of home working and are embracing the opportunities to do so.

Last week, an online article was published exploring the significant shift from office to home working in the UK this past year. According to online business marketplace PeoplePerHour.com, there has been a 68 percent increase in the number of UK businesses that are hiring remote workers in the last 12 months (based on a study of more than 45,000 companies).

Nearly 71 per cent of respondents flagged flexibility and cost savings as reasons for employing non-office-based staff. In addition, businesses reported a 23 per cent cut on staff costs as a result of the shift to remote working. The study also found that 91 per cent of business respondents found that the quality of work done by remote workers is just as good, if not better than that of the full-time staff.

While many might view this shift as a direct result of the recession and rising costs, remote working is looking less like a temporary fad. While businesses have admitted that the recession has played a big role in their efforts towards learning how to work more efficiently by using available technology and the web, as well as to cut costs, the claim that the benefits have been so appealing that they are choosing to continue doing so. From those in the study, 70 per cent of businesses have said that they definitely plan on using freelancers in the upcoming year.

What are your views on remote working? Do you prefer it to the traditional ‘working from the office’ model?



Top 10 business products

Top 10 Business ProductsKicking off the new Top 10 section of the blog, we thought we’d start with a list driven entirely by you – a list of the top 10 selling products at BT Business Direct today, categorised by the top 10 products that businesses need. Lots of the popular names in here – LG, Samsung, Epson, HP etc.Any surprises among them?



Best selling laptopSamsung Series 2

A solid specced little machine for just £337.95, and with our exclusive cashback and trade in offer you could get this for the sinful price of £138


Buffalo hard driveBest selling pocket sized storageBuffalo 500GB MiniStation

Loads of storage for little money. Great for transporting large files or as a piece-of-cake backup solution. Every business needs one of these


Best selling projectorEpson EBX9 XGA Projector

It’s a fact that your colleagues will be more impressed with your ideas if you present them on a really big screen. While that might not be scientifically proven, a projector certainly makes your ideas bigger.


Best selling printerHP Officejet Pro 8500A Plus e-All-in-One

The brand who makes very good PCs but are rumoured to be giving up the PC business altogether, also makes very good printers. You would appear to agree with that statement as you lap up this all-in-one multi-purpose fax/copier/printer/scanner/tea maker.


Best selling internal hard driveSamsung 1TB Spinpoint

A few years ago 1TB would have cost you near a hundred pounds. Staying true to Murphys Law (and a little help from us), you can now pick up this 1TB drive for £34.99.


Draytek RouterBest selling routerDraytek Vigor 2820n Wireless-N Router

If this bestseller is anything to go by, it would appear the UK’s businesses are choosing to upgrade to the significantly faster 802.11n wireless standard. A smart move UK businesses.


Best selling switchNetGear ProSafe 24 port switch

A ‘ProSafe’ switch from a safe networking brand.


Best selling business desktopHP 8200 Elite

Proving that HP are still a dominant force in the PC market, this Core i3 desktop with Windows 7 Pro and Office 2010 ticks all the right boxes for our business buyers

Best selling softwareMicrosoft Office Home and Business 2010

The cloud may be looming but when it comes to business software Microsoft still has the edge.


Best selling TFTLG  19″ LCD L1942SE Monitor

LG proving the “if you build it, they will come” principle by offering a non-widescreen monitor for a very reasonable price. Who needs a widescreen at work these days anyway? It’s not as you’ll be watching films at work now is it (unless of course you do watch films at work, then you might as well get an LED TV instead, like this beautiful Samsung)?

HP Announcement!

HP - The Spirit of a StartupHere at BT Business Direct we’re still catching our breath from the HP TouchPad madness like everyone else we’re trying to get to grips with what might happen with the HP Computing division. Here’s an outline of the official communication we’ve received from HP:

“The HP board’s decision to evaluate strategic alternatives for the Personal Systems Group business may include a range of options, this was not an announcement of a shutdown of the company’s PC business.”

“HP remains committed – now more than ever – to driving growth of our PC business. We are not taking our foot off the pedal and will continue to drive leading innovation across our PC portfolio moving forward. You also can expect us to continue the company’s strong and solid history of taking care of you, its valued customer. You should absolutely feel comfortable and confident in buying HP just as you always have.”

Whilst there is still a level of uncertainty, BT Business Direct remain committed to HP and their products, and we’re really interested to see what will happen with the mammoth HP computing division, after all HP PSG is the largest PC business in the world with #1 market share and profitability in the PC industry worldwide . We also remain committed to keeping you up-to-date with any future development, so keep checking back and if you have any questions feel free to comment in the box below.