Managers don't encourage telework, study finds

Although teleworking is possible for most federal employees technologically, most respondents to a Market Connections survey said that their managers do not encourage the practice.

Telework broadly means to work from home or another remote location using laptop computers or other portable devices and secure connections to access agency networks. The survey suggests that agency cultures may not have caught up to the potential the technology offers, according to Lisa Dezzutti, president and founder of Market Connections.

Management sets the tone for what is acceptable, and without a clear and significant management effort to promote telework, employee morale may slip, she said. More than 75 percent of the respondents said they don't get support from their immediate managers, and more than 60 percent said support is missing throughout their agencies' entire chain of command, Dezzutti said.

“In order for teleworking to work at an agency, middle and upper management need to be supportive of the concept," she said. "They need to speak with their employees about the benefits of teleworking and what steps need to be taken to implement a successful program."

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