Make Good Helps You Do Good

Our Telework Research Network (TRN) arm just signed a joint marketing agreement with one of Vancouver, Canada’s hottest early stage digital media companies, MakeGood.

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MakeGood allows businesses to cost-effectively practice social responsibility and demonstrate their good corporate citizenship through an innovative online presence and unique web badge. The company works with leading non-profits, such as United Way, to enhance their support for corporate donors.

AS part of relationship with MakeGood, we combined 2006 Canadian census data and our findings of over 250 studies to assess the impact telecommuting could have on the Canadian environment, on company’s bottom lines, and on employees.

What we found was that by encouraging people to work at home, Canadian companies could save 46 million barrels of oil and avoid the production of 9 million tons of green house gas while saving C$50 billion a year. The data will be released tomorrow in newspapers across Canada and online.

According to MakeGood CEO Rick Goossen, “This is our first application of the TRN Telework Savings Calculator. We’re integrating it into our online service so companies can make more visible their improved environmental impact and other efforts for the social good.”

Kate Lister, principal researcher at TRN said, “Today only 7.7% of about 16 million Canadian workers telecommute, but 5.2 million more could. If eligible employees worked at home just half the time it would be the same as taking 1.6 million cars off the road for a year. In fact, 170,000 homes could be powered for a year with the energy saved in office electricity alone.”

While beneficial to the environment, working from home also benefits employers and employees. Companies that support telework enjoy reduced real-estate costs, lower absenteeism and turnover, gain access to a broader workforce, and increased productivity. Employees can save from C$3,000 to C$13,000 a year in work-related expenses, and improve their work/life balance.

Our Telework Research Network group is a three-year-old private research organization that has interviewed telework advocates and challengers including top business researchers, venture capitalists, Fortune 500 executives, virtual employers, online job board executives and users, and dozens of home-based workers in a wide variety of professions. Our research has been used by companies, legislators, and community advocates to promote telework programs throughout the Canada and U.S..

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