The Omaha-Council Bluffs metro on Iowa’s western border ranks 14th in the nation on a list of best cities in which to “telework” and it’s the only metro area from Iowa or Nebraska on the rankings. Bert Sperling, the survey’s architect, says teleworking or telecommuting has been around for years but developing technologies, like high-speed Internet and wireless laptops, are making it possible for more people to work from home, or from wherever there’s an on-line connection.
Sperling, president of the Oregon-based Sperling’s Best Places, says they looked at the nation’s 80 largest metro areas. The list ranks cities in order of how beneficial teleworking is to residents based on the percentage of the city’s population that work in “office space” occupations, typical commuting time, traffic conditions, fuel costs and more.
Sperling says the study finds Omaha-Council Bluffs residents could save a bundle by teleworking. He says by teleworking just one day out of the week, in a year’s time, they would have saved 90 gallons of gasoline and 36 hours of commute time sitting in traffic, or 16-hundred dollars a year.
Sperling says if half of Omaha-Council Bluffs’ workers were to telework, they’d save a collective 102-million dollars a year. He says studies have found teleworking can also improve a worker’s morale. He says the phenomenon of teleworking is so new, there’s no good data on how many people are actually doing it.
The study ranks the cities that are most prepared or that are most conducive for the practice. Sperling says with instant messaging, webcam conferencing and other computer programs, workers can communicate in real time whenever they’re on-line, even when they’re still wearing pajamas. For more information, see the full survey at “www.bestplaces.net”.
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