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Duration and Frequency of Telecenter Use: Once a Telecommuter, Always a Telecommuter?


Author Info

  • Varma, Krishna
  • Ho, Chaang-Iuan
  • Stanek, David
  • Mokhtarian, Patricia


The study of temporal patterns of telecommuting is essential in understanding the adoption of telecommuting and, hence, the impacts of telecommuting on the demand for equipment and services as well as the demand for travel. This research examines, in the context of center-based telecommuting, how often individuals telecommute, the duration of their telecommuting participation, and causes of attrition among telecommuters. It also presents related findings from previous studies of home-based telecommuting. Attrition at the telecenters studied was relatively high, with 50% of all telecommuters quitting within the first 9 months. The average telecommuting frequency across the sample was 22% or about 1.1 days per week. Nearly 64% of the participants telecommuted less than 1 day per week on average. The relationship between frequency and duration appears to be complex, with partially counteracting trends. The results suggest that there is a stable segment of the sample (stayers) who are committed higher-frequency telecommuters, but that within the segment having a propensity to quit, there is a slight but statistically significant tendency for higher-frequency telecommuters to quit sooner. The motivations of participants for quitting the program were investigated. The most frequent type of reason given was job-related (cited by more than a third of all quitters). Other important reasons were supervisor-related (16%) and closure of the center (12%). No one cited dissatisfaction with telecommuting as a reason for quitting, and most quitters expressed a desire to continue telecommuting from the center.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis in its series Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series with number qt61t9j2vb.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 1998
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cdl:itsdav:qt61t9j2vb

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Related research

Keywords: Telecommuting; Telecommuting center; Transportation demand management; Survival theory; Response bias;


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  1. P L Mokhtarian & I Salomon, 1996. "Modeling the choice of telecommuting: 2. A case of the preferred impossible alternative," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 28(10), pages 1859-1876, October.
  2. Patricia Mokhtarian & Ilan Salomon, 2005. "Modeling the Choice of Telecommuting 3: Identifying the Choice Set and Estimating Binary Choice Models for Technology-Based Alternatives," Labor and Demography, EconWPA 0505010, EconWPA.
  3. Mokhtarian, Patricia L. & Salomon, Ilan, 1997. "Modeling the Desire to Telecommute: The Importance of Attitudinal Factors in Behavioral Models," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt29z267km, University of California Transportation Center.
  4. Mokhtarian, Patricia L. & Salomon, Ilan & Saxena, Somitra & Sampath, Srikanth & Cheung, Peter & Le, Kate & Bagley, Michael, 1996. "Adoption of Telecommuting in Two California State Agencies," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt2v63b7b8, University of California Transportation Center.
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Cited by:
  1. Tang, Wei & Mokhtarian, Patricia L & Handy, Susan L, 2008. "The Role of Neighborhood Characteristics in the Adoption and Frequency of Working at Home: Empirical Evidence from Northern California," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis qt13x2q3rb, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
  2. Mokhtarian, Patricia & Varma, Krishna, 1998. "The Trade-Off Between Trips and Distance Traveled in Analyzing the Emissions Impacts of Center-Based Telecommuting," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis qt43b756qg, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
  3. Mokhtarian, Patricia & Bagley, Michael, 2000. "Modeling Employees' Perceptions and Proportional Preferences of Work Locations: The Regular Workplace and Telecommuting Alternatives," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis qt52v5c9wr, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
  4. Choo, Sangho & Mokhtarian, Patricia L, 2004. "Modeling the Individual Consideration of Travel-Related Strategy Bundles," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis qt3123v46c, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
  5. Walls, Margaret & Safirova, Elena, 2004. "A Review of the Literature on Telecommuting and Its Implications for Vehicle Travel and Emissions," Discussion Papers, Resources For the Future dp-04-44, Resources For the Future.
  6. Golob, Thomas F., 2002. " - Activity Approaches to Modeling the Effects of Information Technology on Personal Travel Behavior," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt9t40s1mc, University of California Transportation Center.


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