New €12m fund to support remote working space welcomed

Sen Gallagher was speaking earlier this week after a new survey showed a massive 94pc of workers prefer to work from home.

Around 10,000 remote working spaces are being planned for rural communities to allow workers to spend less time in the office and more at home.

The move is part of Enterprise Ireland's plan to provide funding for 10,000 “co-working and incubation spaces in regional locations" over the next three years.

“As a response to Covid-19, Enterprise Ireland have launched a €12m fund to help enterprise centres impacted by the pandemic to continue to provide important services to start-ups in towns and villages across the country,” according to local Fianna Fail Senator Robbie Gallagher.

Sen Gallagher was speaking earlier this week after a new survey showed a massive 94pc of workers prefer to work from home.

The National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG) survey showed a significant increase of 11pc in the number of people who want to work from home since a poll at the start of lockdown.

Just 6pc said they did not wish to work remotely, which was a drop from 16pc who said this in April.

The NUIG survey found that 23 per cent of people polled would also consider relocating within Ireland based on their experience of remote working since Covid-19 and 7pc said they had already moved.

“Providing the infrastructure for remote working has challenges such as broadband and the provision of spaces in remote working hubs which will allow both individuals and communities to make the most of this fundamental shift in the way we work. The experience of remote working, forced upon many people as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic, provides an opportunity to create a better work-life balance for workers.

“There is a great opportunity to change the way we work for the better and to breathe new life into our rural towns and villages. This funding is needed to provide local authorities and enterprise offices with the means to start building the infrastructure to facilitate the roll-out of remote working opportunities that can benefit local communities, local businesses and workers across the country,” says Sen Gallagher.

Such facilities, he believes, have the potential to “revolutionise” work in this country while assisting more balanced regional development.

“By reducing car journeys it can also help us to meet climate change targets. As well as all that it can give workers both more positive work-life balance and a better standard of living."

“The feedback on remote working appears to be quite positive and the remote working experience could be a game-changer not only for how many organisations will manage their workforces in the future but also for rural Ireland,” he concluded.