On The Job Or At Home, Getting `On Line' Can Save Bucks

Trying to convince your boss that you should spend more time on the phone and less time running around town? Try this argument: A recent Arthur D. Little Inc. study found that U. S. businesses could save some $23 billion annually if just 10% to 20% of tasks that normally require transportation--such as traveling to business meetings--were performed using telecommunications technology instead. That means that time spent on planes or on the highway could be better spent working at home, using a computer, fax, and telephone.

The study discovered other benefits to making changes in both work habits and lifestyles. According to the authors, making such simple changes as sending faxes rather than overnight packages and shopping with an on-line service rather than going to a mall could free up 3.1 billion hours of personal time, eliminate at least 1.8 million tons of pollutants, conserve 3.5 billion gallons of gasoline, and also reduce traffic congestion in urban areas.