Just because a person is in the office nine hours a day doesn't mean his productivity is higher than at home. It's all up to the individual's self-discipline and motivation. I certainly would not want to have superiors who love to micromanage.
It really depends on the job. A lot of people end up doing "nonsense" in the office - helping your manager with IT issues he should call the IT department for or learn how to resolve himself, or planning team meetings in conference rooms. All that wasted time is now saved for the more productive worker at home.
The greater flexibility in managing one's time (some people are actually more productive at night) and time saved commuting are clearly some advantages of remote working. Of course, it also depends on the nature of one's job. Not every job is suited to working from home, but that's where employers must make a good judgment call.
Ho Yew Chin
Isn't it all based on personal preference? I know people who are most productive at a cafe. And there are others who aren't productive no matter where they are. Outside of front-facing service staff, employers need to start thinking about task completion and performance rather than time spent in the office.