If you can't find a seat at Starbucks, blame IT

If you can't find a seat at Starbucks, blame IT

The number of employees working out of the office is rising

Unless you're working at Yahoo, where CEO Marissa Mayer has banned telecommuting, there's a very good chance you are working from home or at a coffee shop.

That's according to Forrester, which surveyed 9,766 people to find out how they are doing their jobs. The research firm is seeing some big changes.

In 2010, 18% of employees were working at home at least one day a week. That's now up to 26%, according to the latest data.

More people are also spending a little time in public places, such as coffee shops. In 2010, about 6% were working in a public space. Now that figure is at 12%.

David Johnson, a Forrester analyst, said companies are embracing the need to give their employees "flexible work styles," which includes the ability get out of the office and work remotely.

Johnson said companies are also much more willing to let an employee duck out the office during the day to spend a little time at a coffee shop. But traveling employees are also using public facilities, more often than not, to work.

Johnson credits IT improvements for this rise -- namely, faster networks and cloud-based collaboration tools. "All these things are coming together make it easier for people to work outside the office," he said.

Starbucks, in its 2012 annual report, doesn't talk about the impact on telecommuting trends on its business. But it did have good year, reporting $13.3 billion in revenue, a 14% increase from the prior year.

This article, If you can't find a seat at Starbucks, blame IT, was originally published at

Patrick Thibodeau covers cloud computing and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed. His e-mail address is

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