Broadband v snow
Last Monday saw snow bring the majority of England to a standstill, and disrupted many businesses. But the ability to work from home remotely meant that the disruption for some was less than it otherwise might have been.
ISP PlusNet have produced data showing that the amount of VPN and other associated traffic on their network on Monday was double what it usually is, reflecting the amount of remote working taking place. While the FSB estimated that UK business lost up to £1bn in lost productivity, BT estimate that small businesses recovered £333m of that through flexible working arrangements.
Our work last year on the value of next generation broadband suggested that additional remote working opportunities would bring a variety of benefits to the economy and society – social benefits through better work-life balance and less need for travel; economic benefits in terms of increased productivity. We also included the benefits of remote working in disaster situations, such as flu pandemics.
However, we didn’t factor in snow. We might have to go back and revise our estimates if the cold snap continues.
Peter Shearman, Policy Manager, BSG