Increasing numbers of us are ditching the office to work from home with the biggest rise among women employees

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IT workers in particular more regularly worked from home as opposed the office (Source: Getty)

More and more of us are working from home, according to new research by the Trades Union Congress (TUC).

The number of employees who usually work from home has risen by 152,000 over the last year, according to its analysis of ONS data.

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One in 16 people worked from home in 2016, an increase of 7.7 per cent. The biggest rise has been among women, with a 10.5 per cent rise in the number working from home.

Overall though, men still accounted for the majority of homeworkers, with 966,000 regularly working from home last year, compared to 673,000 women.

In terms of a regional spread, the South West reported the highest proportion of homeworkers with one in 11 people regularly doing so, followed by the East of England and then the South East. In contrast, Northern Ireland had the lowest proportion of people working from home; just 1 in 33 employees said they did so.

As for London, it's not at the top of the rankings, but there was an 11 per cent rise in those now working from home, compared to 2015.

IT, agriculture and construction were the industries with the greatest share of homeworkers, with one in six IT workers saying they regularly worked from home.

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: “Homeworking is a great option for some workers, especially those with disabilities. Businesses should seriously look at the benefits it can bring. Allowing employees to work from home can be good for holding on to talented staff and boosting productivity.”

The research ties in with today’s National Work From Home Day.

Phil Flaxton, chief executive of Work Wise UK which organises the day, said:

Nationally, an increasing number of employers and employees are realising that work is an activity we do, rather than a place we go to.

Attitudes are changing on how we balance or mix work and lifestyle.

Increasing mobility and technology is shifting the acceptance or need for traditional nine-to-five work patterns, to be replaced by a more flexible approach to working from home.

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