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Possible solution to gas prices and commuter traffic?

VhayneVhayne Member UncommonPosts: 632

I was thinking today, while working on a copier in a customer service hub (one of the kind where there's about 200 people in a cubicle farm answering phone calls), about a simple idea.

What if 50% of these types of people were able to do their job from home?  What would the positives be?

Well, they'd use less gas, by not having to drive to and from work every day of the week.  And by using less gas, the demand for gas would decrease (a little at least), and then so would the price. 

For the people that HAD to go to the office, or work a job that really requires driving, like mine (copier tech), there would be substantially less traffic.  Less waiting in long lines at stop lights during rush-time.  Heck it might even do away with "rush-time traffic" altogether. 

With the advances in technology:   Internet, WAN's, LAN's, Digital Phones, etc.  Why wouldn't this be possible? 

Of course it would require the company to perhaps furnish the materials and equipment for the employee,  and that could cost quite a bit initially, but look at the long term investment.   They could use smaller offices, costing alot less overhead.  Insurance probably wouldn't be as high, as the risk of accidents would decrease.  In the longrun, it would be cheaper I believe. 

The companies would of course, have to have trusted individuals working for them.  It would be very easy for someone to slack off, when they are at home.  But there are ways of regulating even that with the current technologies we have.  I mean, if they really wanted to get strict, they could install webcams on the PC's and have 1 person constantly watching all the rest, and monitoring their computer accesses. 

 

I don't know.  I know some companies have a few employees working from home.  But I believe it should be a MUCH greater percentage.  Of course, we'd have to get rid of the power hungry, control freak bosses, that MUST harrass each employee on a daily basis.  And alot of people would have to drop their "still in high school" social standard of working in an overly social enviroment. 

Maybe it could work.

Comments

  • zoey121zoey121 Member Posts: 926

     Not a bad idea, i had  a few as well. 4 day work week. 4 day school week so the school buses aren't spending so much of their budget on gas. Building up public transportation, including commuter trains, increase bus service & reliablity. Tax incentives for car poolers.

     Fedreal funds for cities that improve their public transportation system. No more tax raises for cities that want to build stadiums.. A declared state of emegancy and luxery tax on winfall profits of gas compaines of 1 percent.

     Dedicated bike paths, scooter paths, roller skates

  • VhayneVhayne Member UncommonPosts: 632

    Yeah, I've been saying we need to go to a 4 day work week for a long time now.   I would love to have Wednesday off, as well as the weekend.  Just 2 days at a time to have to work. 

    Well, I'm not screaming for public transportation just yet though.  It's great for those that really want/have to use it I guess.  But I, like another poster on these boards, prefer the freedom of being able to zip around at my leisure.

    Just imagine the what would be accomplished if all of the above was made standard. 

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,385

    Ride a damn bike! Bike traffic is easier to manage.....that is all.

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  • FlemFlem Member UncommonPosts: 2,868

    The solution is quite simple really.  Best of both worlds, still get to keep your car but you dont use fuel.

  • CeredwynnCeredwynn Member Posts: 124

    there is no real solution other than the obvious fact that we should've replaced the major use of gas in vehicles and some other devices. reality is, is that gas is limited and and harmful, so it shouldn't be relied on and we're starting to see some of the problems now even though problems with gas has been occuring for over 20 years.

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  • DailyBuzzDailyBuzz Member Posts: 2,306

    Originally posted by Ceredwynn


    there is no real solution other than the obvious fact that we should've replaced the major use of gas in vehicles and some other devices. reality is, is that gas is limited and and harmful, so it shouldn't be relied on and we're starting to see some of the problems now even though problems with gas has been occuring for over 20 years.

    The only 'solution' is renewable resources. Conservation in any capacity is a great thing, but conservation alone will not 'solve' the issue, although it is our only option in the interim. More drilling would help bring the cost down nominally, but it only serves to extend the ultimatum. Make no mistake, the ultimatum is there, and has been for a long time.

    In the past our nation's leaders have passed the buck, failing to acknowledge that now is the time to make the changes. It's no surprise, people don't like to hear bad news. The bad news will eventually have to be delivered and accepted. Are you willing to accept the burden and make the sacrifices required to facilitate change? If you are not, do you think your children will be?

  • unconformedunconformed Member Posts: 700

    my last job was 4 days a week, 10 hour shifts in the service tech area. i usually worked overtime on the fifth day because it was available.

    I do think those call center people can work from home assuming quotas and the companies right to make a profit are not violated by union type practices.

     

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  • VhayneVhayne Member UncommonPosts: 632

    Originally posted by unconformed


    my last job was 4 days a week, 10 hour shifts in the service tech area. i usually worked overtime on the fifth day because it was available.
    I do think those call center people can work from home assuming quotas and the companies right to make a profit are not violated by union type practices.
     
    Well, it's not only call center jobs.  I don't have any real statistics, but I would guess technically, around 50-70% of office jobs could be done from home, with the proper equipment and employees. 

    The main issue, is not giving those employees a choice.  "You want to work for this company, doing this kind of job, then great.  You'll have to work from home."  if people are able to "choose" to go into the office to work, then we have the issues I talked about earlier.  The people who feel they need the social aspects of a work enviroment to feel comfortable about themselves will probably want to stay in the office, so they can show off their new outfits, and talk about what they did or are going to be doing on the weekends.

  • VampirVampir Member Posts: 4,239
    Originally posted by Flem


    The solution is quite simple really.  Best of both worlds, still get to keep your car but you dont use fuel.

    sadly thats still more horpsepower then a geo metro.

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  • mike470mike470 General CorrespondentMember Posts: 2,396

    Originally posted by Vampir

    Originally posted by Flem


    The solution is quite simple really.  Best of both worlds, still get to keep your car but you dont use fuel.

    sadly thats still more horpsepower then a geo metro.

    Pun intended?

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  • DailyBuzzDailyBuzz Member Posts: 2,306

    Yep. I have done contract administration where all I needed was software licenses and a cell with unlimited minutes and I could have done everything from home. Since it wasn't an option, I had to drive about 60 miles one way to work (fortunately, gas was about $1.25/gallon back then), a two hour commute with traffic.

    The software could become an issue if there is a decent turnover rate (the pricetag on some programs we used were mind-blowing). Otherwise, they could provide laptops. I'm pretty sure they'd cover the license costs with the money saved on styrofoam cups and coffee stirrers though.

    Office politics probably play a lerger role in why a lot would prefer that environment. Although I do know a few (ok, more than a few) shallow people who fit your description. Office politics are the only way a lot of inadequate smooth talkers can secure their positions after the numbers get crunched.

  • RhenkarRhenkar Member UncommonPosts: 68

    Well, they could do it like they do in William Gibson's novels and have arcologies, where everyone lives and works in the same giant building.  Complete with gyms and entertainment centers and the like.  I've even heard of a few companies doing this already?  Or at the very least thinking about doing it.

    If nothing else, you can always place your hope heretinyurl.com/2pt3qd

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