Month: December 2015

How Your Home Changes When You Telework

FM home office away“With winter on its way in, taking advantage of your company’s telework opportunity might sound appealing — but snow days aren’t the only thing keeping people at home during the workweek. Telecommuting opportunities are available at increasing rates to employees in the U.S., and they’re taking advantage of the option more than ever as well.”

“As of September 2015, more than 3.7 million employees work from home at least half the time…”

With work-from-home opportunities on the rise, many job seekers and individuals already in the workforce are excited to find a new position – or take advantage of a new policy – that allows daily tasks to be completed from one’s residence.

Responsibility, however, falls on organizations to ensure these new opportunities are being taken advantage of by those in the best positions to succeed.   Having a quality space to conduct off-site work is just one aspect of selecting appropriate teleworkers.  Other aspects include one’s job role, personal competencies, and social needs.

To give these individuals, the teleworking program, and the organization as a whole the best opportunity for success, telework candidates and their leaders should be carefully assessed in order for the right pieces to be plugged into place.  FlexMatch™ Suitability Assessments covers all of the above mentioned criteria, and the scores of all participants will be reported, along with our recommendation as to the maximum number of days a week a respondent should work off-site.

As this article mentions, remote work is becoming a normalized practice, and employees are planning and preparing their home office space in anticipation of new, continued, or increased opportunities to telework.  Get a leg up on your competition by knowing in advance which employees in your organization will make the smoothest transition.

FlexMatch™ Suitability Assessments can easily and accurately demonstrate to your organization which employees will be most effective working remotely, and which managers possess the requisite skills to manage off-site employees. By examining the suitability of job role, personal competencies, and social needs, our team is able to gauge which employees and managers are best suited for telework and what their ideal home/office mixture is. Enroll your organization now for our next assessment period.

Telecommuting works best in moderation, science shows

home-office1“Organizations are increasingly offering employees a variety of work-from-home options despite sometimes conflicting evidence about the effectiveness of telecommuting. A comprehensive new report reveals that telecommuting can boost employee job satisfaction and productivity, but only when it’s carefully implemented with specific individual and organizational factors in mind.”

Source:  phys.org

Organizations often fall into the trap of hastily rolling out an ambiguous remote work policy, which allows for certain employees to work outside the office at certain times.  The policies are then under-communicated, are not taken seriously, or become all but forgotten about.  Research, like the findings presented in this article, continues to suggest that a strategic approach to selecting teleworkers and determining when and how they telecommute is necessary for success.

For instance, in addition to our key findings that an employee’s job role, personal competencies, and social needs are crucial to the teleworker equation, this article sheds light on other important factors.  These include the feeling of control employees have over their eligibility to telework, as well as their abilities to select their schedule.  The findings also suggest their relationship with their supervisors and coworkers is critical, which validates and echoes our team’s firm belief in analyzing the social needs trait in potential candidates.

When offered the opportunity to take a FlexMatch™ Suitability Assessment, employees will have the ability to express their feelings on several questions designed to determine if that individual truly is a good fit for off-site work.  Conveniently, FlexMatch’s methods of analyzing results and scoring participants will include recommendations on the maximum number of days each week an employee should work from home, based on their responses.

FlexMatch™ Suitability Assessments can easily and accurately demonstrate to your organization which employees will be most effective working remotely, and which managers possess the requisite skills to manage off-site employees. By examining the suitability of job role, personal competencies, and social needs, our team is able to gauge which employees and managers are best suited for telework and what their ideal home/office mixture is. Enroll your organization now for our next assessment period.

 

Telework Can Increase Employee Satisfaction, But It’s Also Lonely

lonely telework“For over a year, I worked almost exclusively from my tiny apartment in Harlem. Aside from trips into an office every six weeks or so, my work schedule and surroundings were mostly left up to me. On some days, I would fly through assignments and personal tasks with unusual efficiency. But on other days, telecommuting meant working from the time I woke up until the wee hours of the morning with no breaks, or spending entire days seemingly accomplishing nothing other than making headway on my Netflix queue.”

Source: govexec.com

Here at FlexMatch™, we assist organizations seeking to add work-from-home policies to their overall workplace strategy.  Despite the best intentions of these organizations, many of those involved in the implementation process tend to remain skeptical.

This article highlights both the benefits, and common concerns, many institutions find themselves weighing as they consider moving forward with telework.  How can we ensure our employees are in fact working?  What sorts of distractions will this particular individual face?  Fortunately, some organizations have had the foresight to ask these questions up front.  Many have not!

Organizations that are serious about rolling out a successful policy will want to do as much fact finding as possible.  Knowing which employees possess the appropriate job roles, social skills, and overall competencies is an incredibly important tool for which to plan a shift to off-site work.  Throw in a service that surveys employees, scores employee results, recommends their appropriate number of days working outside the office, and grades leaders on their ability to adjust to a shift in management style, and you have a prepared project team confident in the decisions they are making moving forward.

Flexmatch™ Suitability Assessments can easily and accurately demonstrate to your organization which employees will be most effective working remotely,  and which managers possess the requisite skills to manage off-site employees. By examining the suitability of job role, personal competencies, and social needs, our team is able to gauge which employees and managers are best suited for telework and what their ideal home/office mixture is. Enroll your organization now for our next assessment period.

 

 

Communicating Eligibility for Telework: Lessons Learned from the Department of Defense

Government Teleworker

“The DoD breakout shows that despite a 2010 law requiring all agencies to inform employees of whether they are eligible to telework, 37 percent of employees there say they have not received such a notice. Another 10 percent are not sure if they were notified, with 31 percent saying they were told they are eligible and 22 percent saying they were told they are not.”

Source: fedweek.com

For government agencies, the implementation of teleworking policies has been a tall task. Based on a law passed in 2010, these agencies are required to inform employees of their eligibility for remote work.  As this article points out, however, this has not been the case in many instances. Large portions of government employees in fact are still unclear about what teleworking options are available to them.  Even more, many of those that are aware indicate they do not work remotely because of the demands of their job, or because of challenges with technology.

Clearly there are many hurdles an organization or government agency needs to clear when deciding to develop and maintain a successful telework strategy. Technology, the perceived drop-off of productivity, and questions about communication can all be considered stumbling blocks for any program. Because of these obstacles, identifying the proper departments or individuals for this new strategy becomes of upmost importance.  To identify remote workers with strong opportunities for success, factors such as their job role, personal competencies, and social needs have to be taken into consideration. Choosing the right employees to telework will ensure that this aspect of your flexible working initiative is ultimately successful and advantageous for both employee and employer.

Flexmatch™ Suitability Assessments can easily and accurately demonstrate to your organization which employees will be most effective working remotely,  and which managers possess the requisite skills to manage off-site employees. By examining the suitability of job role, personal competencies, and social needs, our team is able to gauge which employees and managers are best suited for telework and what their ideal home/office mixture is. Enroll your organization now for our next assessment period.