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Homework

Your first assignment: Let employees telecommute.
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With the number of telecommuters growing, Capitol Hill is finally paying attention. In October 1999, John Edwards, president of the International Telework Association and Council (ITAC), spoke before the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, citing a new survey, sponsored by AT&T and ITAC, that found almost half the country's work force could do some tele-working.

According to the survey, 19.6 million teleworkers exist today-up from 8.1 million in 1995. Perhaps that's because telecommut-ing cuts down on traffic and pollution, helps businesses retain employees, and saves employers significant amounts of cash.

The survey found gains from increased productivity, a by-product of teleworking, rang in at $1,850 per employee per year, and reduced-absenteeism savings of $2,000 per year per teleworker.


  • Don't let employees telecommute until they've gone through some training. Gil Gordon, a management consultant in Monmouth Junction, New Jersey, who implements telecommuting programs for businesses, suggests you cover these areas: setting up a home office, dealing with temptations and distractions, and how to do your job remotely for part of the week. For more details, visit Gordon's Web site at www.gilgordon.com.



Ellen Paris is a Washington, DC, writer and former Forbes magazine staff writer.
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Edition: May 2017

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