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Am I teleworking if I can’t get on the system?
September 12, 2012 at 7:34 pm #169204
I recently had an incident when I was unable to get online from home while teleworking. I spent the morning working with our IT office before giving up. When this happens am I considered working or AWOL if I can’t get in touch with anyone (no emails or phone numbers)?
September 12, 2012 at 7:49 pm #169220
I would consider that working. It’s not really any different than being in the office and not being able to log on or use your computer. The time you spent with IT should be considered time working.
September 12, 2012 at 8:08 pm #169218
Chelsea L. BoothParticipant
I’ve had that happen both from home while teleworking AND while in the office. When this happens in the office, everyone can see me struggling and trying not to shout at the IT person when they ask me to do the same thing that didn’t work 10 minutes ago. When this happens from home, I call a point person on our team (sometimes my branch chief, sometimes a co-worker) and ask them to spread the word. This was a lesson learned after the first time when I didn’t have phone numbers or email addresses. Now I make sure I have a few people to call/email from my personal computer in an emergency.
September 12, 2012 at 8:24 pm #169216
This answer comes courtesy of FELTG’s William Wiley:“Your situation is similar to the situation in which an agency has to close down due to an unforeseen disruption such as a loss of power or flooding. You are ready, willing and able to work, the agency is not, so as long as you remain ready to work during your assigned hours of work, and have exhausted reasonable efforts to work, you are not AWOL.In your no-communication scenario, most agencies would simply grant you excused absence for the time your computer was down through no fault of your own. However, the agency could place you in an annual leave status, if it so chose. If you felt that forcing you to take leave for that time was unfair, your only recourse is to file a grievance and hope that someone higher up the management chain (or an arbitrator, if you’re in a union) will agree with you and convert the annual leave to administrative leave.”
Hope this helps!
September 12, 2012 at 8:41 pm #169214
Thanks, all. These are very helpful responses. Are there any regs I can apply when this situation occurs?
September 12, 2012 at 8:44 pm #169212
Thanks! These are my thoughts exactly. My supervisor is not forcing me to take leave, he is denying my leave request because I didn’t call him. I explained that I couldn’t call. I think this is retaliation for taking another job. He actually changed my timesheet AFTER I left. The whole situation is surreal… Now I am filing a greivance and have to justify my situation. It has been very difficult…
September 12, 2012 at 8:45 pm #169210
Is there a precendent? Ruling? Any regulation I can point to on this subject?
September 13, 2012 at 7:31 pm #169208
Patrick A ReillyParticipant
Congatulations on your new job! This is a time for renewal and chance to get excited about new opportunities. Lord knows we have our share of bad managers in the Govt and if this guy is being a jerk, move on knowing better things lie ahead. You can’t control how others act but you can control how you respond. I personally would ignor the situation and move on. You may be looking for a win at his expense which may or may not be there. What will be there is misery, continued bad feelings and energy sucking activitie that will rob you of the good feeling from starting something new.
If I was in a similar telework situation I would find some offline ways to support my office. Make some calls, do some outreach, brainstorm some office improvement plans. Just a suggestion.
September 17, 2012 at 8:40 pm #169206
Thank you, Patrick. I was able to do some work while offline, but my boss doesn’t really care about that. This is his own power trip. I agree that the bad feelings are not worth it, but I do feel that he has gotten away with bullying a lot of people and now that I am in the position to fight back, maybe I should…
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