Barometer 2013: Cost-cutting main expectation from the New Worlds of Work

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Users of the New Worlds of Work (NWW) increasingly had as their primary goal to achieve lower cost for their company. Whereas in 2012 expectations still revolved primarily around growing employee satisfaction and an improved work-life balance for employees, in 2013 ambitions shifted toward reducing costs in particular.

At present, NWW offers a mixed picture: it is becoming ever more common and is also increasingly recognisable as a concept, while at the same time resistance against it is on the rise, and enthusiasm is on the wane. Watch Professor Eric van Heck as he explains the current status of NWW in the Netherlands.

“The New Ways of Working enable us to combine productivity with satisfaction in our work.”

Recent years have seen a growing number of organisations adopting the New Worlds of Work (43% of the respondents in 2011, 53% in 2012, and 64% in 2013). On average, these organisations have improved on NWoW-related factors, such as stimulating transparency in the daily job, providing online access to needed work-related information, and finding a good balance between mutual trust and control of employees who are now able to work at any time, and at any place.

Respondents report having a better grasp of the concept of NWoW, but it generates fewer positive associations (39% now versus 50% in 2012) and more negative ones (19% now versus 12% in 2012).

In 2013, the strongest obstacles to a successful implementation of NWoW were employees fearing that they would lose their own (fixed) workplace; managerial resistance against the concept; fear of losing touch with colleagues; as well as a mismatch between NWoW and the existing organisational culture.

Using the barometer, the Netherlands has a scientific measuring tool for examining how NWoW is taking shape and which effects it is having. The barometer is an online questionnaire distributed through various channels. This time around, it has been filled out by employees from 70 different companies. In 2010, the Barometer was developed by Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) in cooperation with Novay (ICT research institute) and the Center for People and Buildings (develops knowledge about people, work and workplaces).

The National New Worlds of Work Barometer receives support from the Sustainable Work Umbrella Organisation, ECP | Umbrella Organisation for the Information Society, plus the New Worlds of Work is Your World! campaign, initiated by Smart Work Smart Travel and Nature & Environment. The report is available on

The Sustainable Work Umbrella Organisation is the new name for the TelewerkForum-HNW Foundation. In the past, its focus was on promoting time- and place-independent work practices in the Netherlands, such as teleworking and NWoW. But the novelty of that has worn off for many. In 2012, the search was on for the very latest developments. These involve new issues, such as making labour relations sustainable; creating closer ties with the employer; and improving the work-life-care balance. How can I remain to be an effective and efficient employee, despite being on call 7/24? For both employees and employers to quickly reap the benefits, it is important to bring about chances more swiftly. More (Dutch-language) info can be found here

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is ranked amongst Europe’s top 10 business schools for education and among the top three for research. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam - a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who carry their innovative mindset into a sustainable future thanks to a first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes. RSM also has offices in the Amsterdam Zuidas business district and in Taipei, Taiwan.

For more information about RSM or on this release, please contact Ramses Singeling, Media Officer on +31 10 408 2028 or by email at

For more information on Forum Duurzaam Werken contact Claudia Top at +31 (0)40-235 4600 or

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