The telecoms firm carried out a study of employees in several locations, to determine the impacts of teleworking. Verizon found that over six months, the employees avoided 10,680 hours (445 days) of commuting time. By March 2011, they avoided driving 62,000 miles.
“I really appreciate the flexibility that TeleWork provides,” said Nena Faulker, a senior consultant on Verizon’s sustainability team. “My telework commute is significantly shorter and much less stressful. Plus, with the rising fuel prices, it saves me money, wear and tear on my car, toll charges and I get to have a positive impact on the environment.”
Recently Verizon announced it is changing its carbon efficiency metric, from metric tons of CO2 emitted per million dollars of revenue, to metric tons of CO2 per terabytes of data carried on the company’s networks. Verizon claims this new metric will allow it to accurately quantify the impact of all its environmental initiatives for the first time.
The measure combines emissions from electricity, building fuels and vehicle fuels.
Environmental consultant and EL columnist Kim Allen notes that not only are employee commutes emissions-heavy, but programs to reduce single-car commutes and enable productive telecommuting can increase employee loyalty.
Nearly 20,000 employees at IT giant Cisco use the company’s Virtual Office platform at home, to telecommute one or more days per week. The software extends Cisco’s own network into their homes, permitting high speed access to voice, video and data applications.