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Office workers now see less sunshine than coal miners


Employees urged to enjoy the summer months by working wirelessly

With the first official day of summer this weekend, BT is urging the millions of city workers bound by darkness to free themselves from the trend of ‘chain-desking’ and work outside of the office.

Latest figures show that the majority of city workers are tied to their desks and see natural sunlight for less than an hour per day. Nearly a quarter (22%) see less than twenty minutes during the working day.

This lack of sparkle in their lives is clearly taking its toll, as nearly two thirds (65%) of workers admit they are depressed at the thought of not being able to get away from their desk to see more daylight. Four in five are unmotivated knowing they’ll be stuck indoors working. There are even some that would consider throwing a “sickie” to boost their daylight exposure.

In response to the research, conducted by Ciao Research for BT Wireless Broadband, BT is launching a plea to city-centre bosses. Dave Hughes, BT Retail’s director of Wireless Broadband, explains: “Out of the office no longer means ‘out of touch’ and workers can stay just as productive when not chained to their desks. The number of Wi-Fi enabled devices flying off the shelves coupled with widely available hotspots provides the tools to support remote working. Let’s just hope the British weather plays along this summer!”

Stephen Alambritis, of the Federation for Small Businesses, foresees this lack of fresh air as becoming a significant sap on productivity: “Lack of sunshine or outdoors activity has an enormous effect on morale and productivity is likely to drop in tandem. With a wide variety of internet access options available to office workers, and more bosses approving remote working, there’s never been a better summer for those workers stuck at their desks to get some productive time in the sun for their boss and themselves.”

BT has published top tips about how to get the best out of working away from the office, in particular ensuring that company security is not jeopardise while workers catch some rays. BT has done everything to maintain high security standards, but in order to keep super-safe this summer:
1. Don’t flash your devices around. Find a sensible and safe location to work in.
2. Activate your computer’s firewall before going outdoors.
3. Take care that no-one is looking as you type in passcodes/PINs etc.
4. Password-protect any important files. Alternatively, do not take confidential documents out and about with you.
5. Use a secure connection wherever possible - details of this can be found next to the network name. Also, ensure that you disable your device’s ability to automatically connect to a network, or it could connect you to an unsecure one.
6. Disable “file and printer sharing”, as this leaves your computer more vulnerable to hackers.
7. Keep your operating system and your anti-virus software up to date.
8. Try to use webmail services wherever possible, rather than use Outlook or Apple Mail directly. This allows you to take advantage of the added security these sites provide.
9. Finally, it’s important for both you and your device to stay cool – don’t stay in the sun too long, or your laptop could overheat and you may lose important work!

To assist workers to roam free, BT’s hotspot estate in the UK and Ireland covers more than 3,000 hotspots including railways stations, airports, hotel chains, coffee shops and marinas – and often the coverage in these spaces can stretch beyond the assigned usage area. Wireless coverage also includes 12 city centres, plus hotspots provided by the BT FON Wi-Fi community, now with more than 105,000 members.

These provide BT Openzone, BT FON, BT Total Broadband Anywhere and BT Office Anywhere customers or casual users with a comfortable location to log in, without wires.


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