January 27, 2012 at 2:57 pm #151078
Dorothy Ramienski AmatucciParticipant
The commute to work can be unpleasant. We all know this. Sometimes, though, it can be downright frustrating.
Some GovLoop members in the D.C. metro region yesterday had to deal with major delays on the Metro’s Red Line due to a cracked rail at one of the stations. Many complained on various social media sites that their morning commute was lengthened by an hour or more due to single-tracking.
As someone who sat at one station for about 15 minutes with the train car doors open and a cold wind blowing on me, I couldn’t help but wonder if situations such as yesterday’s snafu would prompt more employees to discuss the value of telework with their managers.
While the federal government was initially slow to adopt the idea of letting workers work from home or a remote location, apparently this is no longer the case. Federal Computer Week reports that a new survey shows about 70 percent of feds telework “at least some of the time”.
Microsoft’s The Future of Government Work report also shows that managers are more keen on the idea than they had been in the past.
Challenges still remain, however. Some respondents said that they found it difficult to engage with those physically in the office, while others said it was hard to schedule meetings.
Do you telework? What about others in your office? Are you seeing the benefits, or finding that it’s making your job more difficult? Let us know in the comments!
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January 27, 2012 at 3:03 pm #151086
I don’t like it, except on occasion. I guess if I had a family, a hobby, and plenty of time to meet with friends on my spare time it would be okay, but I enjoy the social experience and work environment of being in an office. I don’t want my home to be my office. On the other hand, it can be a huge cost-cutter I think and who doesn’t want the government to cut costs?
January 29, 2012 at 2:58 pm #151084
I have been teleworking for over 20 years (at least once a week), and I can say that it is a great flexibility. WIth the transit subsidy being reduced from $230 to $125, and the price of gas and Metro going up, I think that more people will be teleworking. The technology has finally reached the tipping point. Now we just need a few good winter storms to once again remind people of the value of teleworking. My next goal is to share my cubicle with others. This will result in real cost savings to the government. Up until now, it has been all about me. Now it’s time to give back.
January 29, 2012 at 5:11 pm #151082
Almost everyone in my office teleworks to some degree. I have an assigned day as do most of my co-workers. I am very fortunate that I can complete pretty much all of my assignments anywhere I can find an Internet connection. Most importantly though, I know that teleworking is a privilege. Big meeting on my telework day? I’ll be in the office. Conversely, if I hear a traffic report that is exceptionally worse than usual, I might work from home for a couple of hours until 395 clears.
My boss and I have a strong rapport and she trusts me to meet all of my deadlines. I am very fortunate.
January 29, 2012 at 5:50 pm #151080
I voiced a similar question on my blog last week when Chicago was hit snow that had been well anticipated and still managed to create a commuter’s nightmare.
I am pleased that you found some current stats for Federal workers who commute 70% of the time. I do think the social aspects of the workplace are important, especially as some of my best friends are people I met at the office. So I’m not sure that it makes sense to dispense with in office work altogether but it is time to leverage some of the opportunities that technology provides to avoid some of the wider frustrations.
I’m interested in learning what corresponding arrangements or work schedules could be more readily adapted to spare people from commuting disruptions? Secondly, if anyone knows of some good value chains that have been produced that are being used by an organization to demonstrate the returns from adopting a more flexible work location approach, I’d love to hear about them too.
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