Telework: Productivity Not Presence Should Be the Measure of An Employee

Originally posted by Laureen Miles Brunelli, Guide to Work-at-Home Moms

Of course the big legislative news this week is the financial reform bill, but in other news, the House passed the

Telework Improvement Act. The bill, which the Senate had already passed, calls for an increase in the number of telecommuting federal employees. President Obama is expected to sign the bill.

Productivity not presence should be the measure of an employee. And that goes for both the telecommuter and the on-site employee. In fact, a Washington Post article about a report that non-profit Partnership for Public Service and consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton issued on teleworking efforts with in the government highlighted this point.

The article quoted Max Stier, president and chief executive of Partnership for Public Service, as saying that some managers “use physical presence as a proxy for working.”

And as anyone who has ever worked, well, anywhere knows, the two are not the same.

So if this push toward telecommuting means that the government implements real policies to measure and increase productivity for all employees, the cost reductions will go light years beyond the savings on electricity and office spaces that the bill’s sponsors predict.

For the full post (including an interesting discussion on porn policy in the bill), please see here.

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Bryan Conway JD, PMP

Production standards, outside of an environment where an employee performs the same redundant task continuously every day, are very difficult to create. What would you measure? Volume of email messages answered, memos drafted, phone calls made, etc? There is too much variability in what most employees do on a given day. The standards would be extremely subjective and difficult to measure in most office environments!