Telework ROI – Why Should Individuals or Organizations Care?

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Henry Brown 5 years, 9 months ago.

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  • #153625

    Terrence Hill
    Participant

    I’ve been invited to join a group of professionals to examine the retun on investment of telework. Here are my ideas. Please share yours.

    Telework has an ROI at three levels – organization, individual, and community. The big winner seems to be organizations that support telwork.

    Organizational ROI– Cost (Training/Technology) – Savings (Real Estate Decrease, Productivity Increase, Turnover Reduction, Overhead Decrease)

    Individual ROI – Cost (Tecnology/Energy) – Savings (Commuting Time/Expense, Overhead Decreases)

    Community ROI – Cost (Tax Incentives) – Savings (Congestion, Pollution, Overhead Decreases)

    What is your perspective on Telework ROI? What did I miss?

    Also, if you are new to telework (or want to increase your telework frequency), make a commitment to telework during Telework Week (March 5-9, 2012). Pledge at http://www.teleworkexchange.com/teleworkweek/

  • #153635

    Henry Brown
    Participant

    some relatively minor issues:

    • increased costs for dedicated communication links (phones and internet connectivity)
    • increased time for support requirements
    • Reduced sick leave usage
    • something that is rarely looked at; change in costs for clothing

  • #153633

    Allison Primack
    Participant

    I agree with Henry’s points – one of the main reasons why I like teleworking is I am still able to “go to work” if I have a cold, or can’t come into the office for whatever reason. However, it is important to make sure that there is a system to ensure that employees are being as productive at home as they are in the office. For some, I can see how being at home can be a huge distraction – there is something about being in an office that can increase focus, and productivity by interacting with coworkers in person. It would be a decrease in ROI if employees aren’t as productive out of office!

  • #153631

    I am a fan of the “on again/off again” telework policy. My last two jobs have allowed me to telework one or two days a week, which works really well for me. I can save money on Metro (I don’t drive into DC) and don’t have to deal with an hour long commute 5 days a week. I don’t know if I could do it 5 days a week, though. I think I would feel too disconnected from the office.

  • #153629

    Corey McCarren
    Participant

    I am against a total policy of telecommuting only, but as I think about the fact that maybe more jobs could be supplied by reduced costs and people more economically stable if telecommuting was done more often, maybe there is a healthy mix. An example is maybe if you required people (as Dorothy said) to be in the office 3 times a week, you could have a smaller office by changing the days that people are in and out. Managers would also have a better idea of how much work to expect from someone while they are outside of the office, so they know if the person is slacking or not. Let’s just not forget the belonging stage in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs!

  • #153627

    Terrence Hill
    Participant

    Productivity is a perpetual issue with ROI calculations. It’s often tough to measure productivity and many studies use perception data from teleworkers themselves. And yes, there are some distractions at home that aren’t present in the office (my dog is mine). However, even if productivity stays the same (or is not measured), at least there can be some savings by sharing offices, or using personal devices versus government-owned devices.

    @Henry – Good point on sick leave usage. Even annual leave can be saved, if you can telework for part of a day and just take a couple hours for personal chores. For those few who still don’t have high-speed internet access at home may have to invest some money, but most progressive agencies help to defray the monthly cost for service.

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