Australian Bureau of Statistics
1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2007
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/01/2007
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LOCATIONS OF WORK
MAIN REASON PEOPLE WORKED AT HOME
Of the people who worked at home 40% stated their main reason was that they wanted their office at home or they wanted no overheads or rent and the majority of these (82%) were owner managers (table 6.38).
One-fifth (20%) of people who worked at home gave their main reason as operating a farm. More than one-quarter (27%) of men who worked at home stated they were operating a farm, compared with 15% of women. Of employees (End note 3) who worked at home, 16% stated this was a condition of their employment.
Flexible working times, which usually apply to home-based work, may assist in juggling family responsibilities, in particular child care (Whitehouse et al, 2002). One-fifth (20%) of people who worked at home gave child care or family considerations and flexible working arrangements as their main reasons for doing so (table 6.38). More than one-quarter (27%) of women who worked at home stated these reasons, compared to 12% of men.
Women are more likely to work at home as they tend to be family carers. In November 2005 women represented more than half (55%) of all people who worked at home. Women who worked at home were also more likely to have children aged under 15 years (44%), when compared with all employed women (33%).
ARRANGEMENT TO WORK AT HOME
In November 2005 more than four-fifths (82%) of employees (End note 3) who worked at home had an arrangement with their employer. Women represented 61% of those with an arrangement. Almost two-thirds (65%) of employees (End note 3) with an arrangement had leave entitlements.
More than half (53%) of all people who worked at home were aged between 35 and 54 years, which was higher than the proportion of all employed people in this age group (46%) (graph 6.39). Those aged 15-24 years accounted for only 4% of those who worked at home, but represented 18% of all employed people. Those aged 65 years and over accounted for 8% of those who worked at home, compared to 2% of all employed people. Men aged 65 years and over were more likely than women to work at home (5% and 3% respectively).
People who worked at home were highly represented in the higher-skilled occupation groups. Two-thirds (67%) of men who worked at home in November 2005 were Managers and administrators or Professionals. In contrast, these occupations accounted for just over one-quarter (28%) of all employed men (table 6.40). (End note 4) More than half (51%) the women who worked at home were Advanced clerical and service workers or Professionals. In comparison, less than one-third (29%) of all employed women (End note 4) were represented in these occupations.
HOURS WORKED AT HOME
Of the people who worked at home, almost two-thirds (63%) worked less than 35 hours per week (End note 5) and more than one-third (37%) of these worked 1-15 hours. In comparison, 40% of all employed people worked less than 35 hours per week. (End note 6)
USE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
Improvements in technology have made home-based work a viable alternative, linking people who work at home with central offices or clients via online networks. Four-fifths (80%) of those who worked at home in their main job used information technology. The majority of these people (91%) used both a computer and the Internet. Professionals represented the highest proportion (31%) of those who used both a computer and the Internet, while Intermediate production and transport workers represented the lowest proportion (1%).
Whitehouse G, Diamond C & Lafferty G 2002, 'Assessing the benefits of telework: Australian case study evidence', New Zealand Journal of Industrial Relations, vol. 27, no. 3, pp. 257-268, Wellington, New Zealand
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