Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Let’s Talk About Telework

Home Officeimage by jnyemb used under Creative Commons license

Telework allows an employee to operate in a location outside his or her primary office, using telecommunication devices such as modems, phones and faxes to communicate. Technological innovations mean many people only require a computer, secure Internet connection and phone line to do their work; they can perform effectively anywhere they have access to these tools. If your job fits this description, consider discussing telework with your supervisor. There are considerable benefits for everyone and for our air quality.

Telework can help employers because it reduces overhead costs in the office and increases employee productivity as it can improve employee job satisfaction. Telework can assist employees in achieving a better balance between professional and personal lives, since most employees choose to telework from their homes. Whenever an employee teleworks, a round trip of commuting is eliminated, reducing air pollution from vehicle travel and saving the employee time. According to the United States Census Bureau, New York has the longest average commute of any state at 31.2 minutes; average New Yorkers would get more than an hour of extra time in their day whenever they telework.

Telework also is being embraced by the Federal government, which has set goals to increase participation among Federal employees. A February 2011 report by the United States Office of Personnel Management states:
“President Obama, the Congress, and OPM have all encouraged Federal agencies to expand their use of telework to ensure continuity of operations; find targeted productivity improvements and reduce overhead, real estate, environmental, and transit costs; and improve employees’ ability to manage their work and life obligations.”
If you want help setting up your own telework arrangement with your employer, 511NY Rideshare can help you create a personalized telework plan.

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