Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys is to set up an interdepartmental group to develop clear guidelines for employees and employers on remote working. 

The move comes after research commissioned by the Government found 44% of workers saw greater flexibility as a primary motivator for working remotely. 

41% of workers said reduced commuting time was also a benefit of remote working while 60% pointed to work-life balance as a key benefit. 

Among employers, increased productivity and cost-effectiveness are seen to be strong reasons to allow employees to work remotely. 

The Department of Business commissioned the Remote Work in Ireland report as part of its Future Jobs Ireland strategy. 

It examined the prevalence and types of remote working arrangements already in operation here, as well as the international experience. 

The study found that remote working is growing in popularity and that it has the potential to improve productivity, attract and retain talent and grow participation in the workforce. 

But the research also identified potential problems with the practice, including possible negative physical and mental health implications. 

The report called for more official guidance for employers and employees on the issue, as well as data about its use. 

It also recommended more collaboration across Government.