Department of Defense

Distributed Offices (Telework)

The federal government should take a proactive and strategic approach to managing office space, employees, and telework/telecommuting. By establishing stronger policies and performance metrics (such as percent of employees involved in and/or the percent of organizational work done via telework) to encourage and manage telework, the federal government could reduce the required amount of office space. Thereby reducing energy consumption, building maintenance, office supply, and travel costs. Also, teleworking reduces traffic, fuel consumption, and automotive pollution. Benefits of telework can be maximized through strategic planning, where office space utilization is optimized and workforce availability is pre-planned. In many cases jobs can be performed almost exclusively from a telework location, especially considering the availability of desktop video-teleconferencing (such as google, skpe, etc…),which then eliminates the need to provide moving expenses between duty stations and provides the employees’ with flexibility to live in areas that enhance their overall work-life balance. Lastly, telework often improves employee morale and job satisfaction. While this is a significant change management activity for organizations, it is necessary for the government to remain competitive in attracting and retaining technology proficient employees, improve efficiency and effectiveness, and reduce overall operating expenses.

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Idea No. 13485