Broadband has since it emerged from trials in the UK in 2000 has allowed people to work from home, thus it is no surprise to see home working being trumpeted as one of the benefits for the superfast broadband roll-outs planned.
"We really wanted to come back to Norfolk to be closer to family and to let our kids grow up as we had, with the lovely Norfolk countryside and people. This wouldn't have been possible, however, if it wasn't for broadband and it’s no coincidence that we moved into Great Moulton at exactly the same time that broadband arrived there too. Being in the technology industry, however, I also get to see what’s coming down the pipe and one thing is for certain – we’re going to need faster internet connections.
If we don’t, then people who live in our beautiful county will soon start to fall behind the people who live in cities in terms of the services and communications they can access."Neil Collins, a senior manager for Metaswitch Networks
The Eastern Daily Press article highlights that homeworking has progressed beyond just simply replying to emails while sat in the garden. In 2012 it involves remote access to company resources that may be located all over the world, taking part in video conferences and long team meetings where people share documents and real time product demos.
This flexibility and access to a decent connection is one of the key things to the growth of online workplaces like oDesk.com, where clients can pay per hour, with screenshots and video uploaded to document the time that homeworkers are actually working on a project. The model used by oDesk favours those who are able to charge low rates, which will often be people in Eastern Europe it seems (based on hours worked on their website per country), but for contractors in the UK, or those who have specialist skills a good broadband connection is the key to staying in contact with a client. The reporting system also provides some structure, which all too often people who have worked in an office environment struggle to cope with when first working from home.