There is a huge gulf between attitudes of employers and employees when it comes to remote working.

That is according to BT Business and Nortel, who commissioned YouGov to undertake independent research on the subject.

The issue is one of perceived productivity with less than one in ten businesses in the UK willing to trust their employees to work effectively whilst out of the office.

In contrast, nearly half (42 per cent) of workers have said they are confident that they could work better remotely.

Commenting on the benefits of flexible working, John Dovey, IT services director at BT Business, said: "BT’s 70,000 flexible workers have saved us £500m in building costs and 100,000 tonnes of CO2.

"We can effectively manage our employees and have seen a 30 per cent rise in productivity."

Brendan Barber, general secretary of the TUC, recently said that unions and forward-thinking employers viewed flexible working as a "possible solution to coping with the downturn and saving jobs".