Standing Proud with Global Telework Week

Global Telework Week By Christy Schutz

March 3 – 7, 2014 is Global Telework Week. Now in its fourth year, Telework Week is an initiative by Mobile Work Exchange designed to encourage workers to work virtually for one or more days during the designated week (which has been observed the first week in March since 2011). Those who have agreed to participate come from a wide range of entities, like government agencies, private/public companies, and even individuals who have simply said they will take advantage of their particular flexible work arrangement and work from home some or all of that week.

I have had the privilege of being a remote employee for many years. In addition, I have stayed focused on the aspects that benefit, promote, and limit the world of telework due to my contributions to The Work at Home Woman. Despite all of this, I have never heard of Telework Week! I, for one, am excited about ANY movement that helps promote the benefits of working from home!

So, I’m joining the band wagon and dedicating my post this month to help promote it.

Many of us are already aware of the work/life balance advantages that come with working from home, but, according to research compiled by the Mobile Work Exchange, there are a lot of other benefits to keep in mind. For example, over the course of the Telework Week held in 2013, they projected that the roughly 136,000 people who participated not only gained back 665,936 hours, but they also saved $12.3 million in commuting costs, removed 7,892 tons of pollutants from the air, and decreased their driving distance by 12.1 million miles. Some other benefits that the Mobile Work Exchange outlines (that we need to talk about more frequently), include:

Improved Business Continuity:

When weather, natural disasters, or other unplanned events unfold, those businesses that have contingency plans which include leveraging their remote workforce can usually avoid downtime and keep their customers happy.

Increased Productivity:

Happy employees are typically more productive than unhappy or complacent employees, and workplace flexibility factors into that happiness quotient. In addition, individuals who work from home usually put in a little more time than their office bound counterparts (with the thought being “there’s no commute, so, might as well use that time to get ahead on my work tasks”).

Real Estate Savings:

Companies, especially small businesses and solo-preneurs, can appreciate a substantial savings (and possible tax advantages) by utilizing a home office vs. commercial property.

Improved Recruiting and Retention:

A company’s ability to be flexible with its workforce is an important recruiting and retention tool. And, according to the 2013 World at Work Survey on Workplace Flexibility, telework is the most commonly used workplace flexibility program, with 88% of the companies surveyed reporting that they offer some sort of remote work arrangement.

Whether you are a full-time Work at Home Woman, someone whose employer gives you “flextime” that includes working from home some of the time, or someone who is trying to make the transition to a remote working arrangement, I’d encourage you to get involved and help promote Telework Week.

There is still time to make the pledge online at http://mobileworkexchange.com/teleworkweek/.

Christy Schutz, is a communications professional and freelance writer focused on topics like employer/personal branding, career management, personal development, women in the workplace, and female entrepreneurs. She enjoys putting 16+ years of experience in the advertising, recruitment marketing, employee/internal communications and special events industries to good use by helping others to discover, develop and market their own distinct calling or mission. This Tampa Bay, FL-based Mom also keeps herself busy by raising 4 kids, caring for her husband & doting on her dogs Petey and Daisy!

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