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How and why we want to promote remote working.

First published:
14 September 2020
Last updated:

COVID-19 has changed the way we live, work, travel and socialise. Many people have worked away from the office during lockdown. We now want to work with organisations to support a long term shift to more people working remotely.

Benefits for local economies, businesses, individuals and the environment include:

  • a reduction in travel time and expense
  • more flexibility and better work life balance
  • increased productivity
  • less traffic, especially at peak times
  • less air and noise pollution
  • the opportunity to redesign our towns and city centres

We would like to see a workplace model where staff can choose to work in the office, at home or in a hub location.

What is remote working?

Working outside of a traditional office or ‘central’ place of work. It includes working at home and close to home in your local community. 

Why we are doing it?

During the first lockdown, lots of people had to work from home to slow the spread of the virus.  We saw that it resulted in benefits for workers, local communities and the environment. 

Benefits:

  • less or no commuting and a better work life balance
  • less congestion, air and noise pollution in some areas
  • less traffic means more room for cyclists and walkers who have to travel to work
  • more job opportunities in out of town communities and access to an increased workforce for employers
  • economic and social benefits for the local high streets

Will businesses have to change how they work?

We would like to have 30% of Welsh workers working at or near to home. This is not a requirement on businesses and many have taken a proactive approach to the changes in working styles

We want to help businesses and employees understand how flexible working can work for them. Many people and businesses will want to continue to work in this more flexible way. This might mean a mixture of working in the office and at home or in the local community.  

For example: 

  • a full time worker may decide to work 2 days in the office and 3 days at or near to home (remote working for 60% of the time)
  • someone who works 3 days a week might work 1 day from home and 2 days at the office (remote working 33% of the time) 

Local remote working hubs

We have received a lot of interest from communities who wish to be involved in creating local coworking hubs. These hubs will:

  • allow people to work nearer to where they live
  • allow individuals to work together in their local community
  • provide a space for those who cannot or do not want to work from home

Our first two pilot hubs are now open in Rhyl and Haverfordwest and we continue to build up our network of pilot hubs. Announcements about these will be available on this page.

If you wish to discuss potential or existing pilot hub locations please contact: RemoteWorking@gov.wales

Remote working public engagement

We ran a survey from February to March that asked:

  • where you would like co-working hubs to be located
  • how you feel about this way of working

The results will be published shortly. You can view the interactive map and feedback you provided.

National remote working strategy

We are developing a national remote working strategy. It will explain how we plan to introduce remote working to the Welsh workplace. The strategy will set out the economic, social and environmental benefits of remote working.

Integrated impact assessment

We intend to publish the remote working integrated impact assessment in the autumn.