The virtual office may be a dream for many, but according to the latest research those hoping to work from home and collaborate online could lose out.

In both economic and environmental terms, a virtual team of people working from home and using collaboration tools and virtual environments to 'meet up', is a good model for the future of industry.

No traffic jams or delayed trains to make workers late, less pollution and less need for overcrowded public transport, sitting around in your pyjamas; it’s certainly an appealing vision of the future.

Face time

However, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit, the only way to actually forge trusting working relationships is to meet up face to face.

“Trust, as well as project success, appears to increase in face-to-face interactions,” the research suggests.

“Meeting a person face-to-face tends to catalyse the interaction and help to turn a transaction into a relationship.

Project success

“There is also a significant positive correlation between face-to-face communication and project success.”

So, the bad news is that if you want to work from home you could end up a lying or paranoid failure. Shame.