Telework embrace widens

Although 65 percent of federal agencies say they are prepared for telework, a good number still score below average in enabling remote work, according to new research.

Nearly one-fifth of respondents in Telework Exchange’s 2012-2013 Telework/Mobile IT Almanac gave their agency a “C” grade for telework readiness, while 24 percent dubbed their agencies’ preparedness efforts as utter failures.

A little more than one-fifth of federal employees currently telework, and that number is expected to keep climbing. Nearly 60 percent of respondents foresee more regular teleworkers, and 45 percent anticipate more part-time mobile workers in the next two years

Despite an executive order that directed agencies to submit proposals by December 2011 to cut costs related to issuing mobile devices, only slightly more than half of respondents say they have a plan in the works to do so.

Agencies with a plan cited pooling mobile purchases within the agency; migrating from desktops to mobile devices; and cloud computing adoption as some avenues to take when slashing costs related to mobility efforts.

Other cost savings tied to mobility efforts come from the workforce itself. The report said most federal teleworkers are currently paying for their phone, Internet access, mobile apps and printing supplies. Agencies are more inclined to pay fully for telephony (26 percent) than Internet access and printing supplies (both 17 percent).

The survey polled 152 federal IT professionals in February 2012. Seventy percent of respondents work in the federal civilian sector, and 30 percent cited the Defense Department or the intelligence community as their employer.

About the Author

Camille Tuutti is a former FCW staff writer who covered federal oversight and the workforce.

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

  • Shutterstock image.

    A 'minibus' appropriations package could be in the cards

    A short-term funding bill is expected by Sept. 30 to keep the federal government operating through early December, but after that the options get more complicated.

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco

    DOD launches new tech hub in Austin

    The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group