Teleworking Benefits: Saving Time, Money and Reducing CO2

As the work force continues to evolve and globalize, more companies are evaluating a telecommuting and working remotely strategy to save overhead costs, increase retention, improve productivity and lower carbon footprint.

According to a recent 2009 Cisco Telework Survey, they found approximately 69 percent of the employees surveyed cited higher productivity when working remote, and 75 percent of those surveyed said the timeliness of their work improved. Cisco reported it has generated an estimated annual savings of $277 million in productivity by allowing employees to telework.

Teleworking can also be a great “green” initiative to promote in a company. It can not only reduce time spent on the road but lowers carbon footprint and reduces gas consumption. Vehicles on the road now account for at least 25 percent of the CO2 emissions nationwide, according to the Federal Highway Administration. According to the Telework Coalition, , based in Washington D.C., if 32 million working Americans could telecommute at least one day per week, they would save 74,164,700 gallons of gas.

Teleworking and Remote Work: Establishing Clear Guidelines

Along with benefits of improved productivity and reduced commute time, there are challenges too. Telework tends to amplify pre-existing worker challenges. Managers need to trust their employees are achieving the same performance results while working from home. Consistent and reliable communications is also a common challenge cited among teleworkers and their colleagues.

All employees should have clear guidelines and expectations when working from home. Ideally, there should be a company policy on telework along with a contract agreement between managers and employees on communication expectations and performance results. This policy should cover core work hours, communication expectations, IT equipment supplied, performance expectations and mandatory training.

Here are a few resources to learn more about teleworking and remote worker guidelines;