Making telecommuting work

In today’s workplace scenario, where most of the work is done virtually, telecommuting is a good option.Many of today’s workplaces that are oriented towards web technologies and related fields rather than towards manufacturing or retail; are looking at telecommuting as a major, defining trend.

The pluses and minuses of telecommuting have been discussed at various forums in the past. Let us look at some of the ways by which we in HR can make telecommuting more effective and how it can give positive results for the organization.

Decide who can telecommute

This should be the most important question we in HR have to answer. We have to have the answers ready when employees in different departments and areas of work come to us requesting a telecommute option. The typical telecommute worker is one whose work doesn’t need interacting with others on a regular basis. Also, telecommuting is suited for those in the creative area, like designing, copyrighting, content writing and so on.

What are the criteria?

Since it is understood that telecommuting is for regular employees and not freelancers, it is always good to have seen the employee for a while, at least a year in the organization. Despite the obvious benefits telecommuting brings; it is yet to become fully acceptable to managements, who are plain suspicious of having people work outside the office.

Some problem areas

Among all the employees doing the same work, there is a problem for HR when a few of them telecommute and others don’t. This needs to be sorted out with the other team members and there should be no misunderstanding or grouse from others about favoritism.

The bottom line

At the end of it all, we have to convince the employees who want to telecommute that this is a system that is meant to help her increase her productivity and not hamper it. We should have to make it amply clear that the policy can change any time we feel that her work is suffering. It will be good to remind them that telecommuting is a privilege and not a right.

References:

http://www.partnc.org/telework/appropriate_for_telecommuting.pdf

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