In the not-too-distant past, a manager's job was to make sure that what was perceived to be a lazy, shifty workforce was actually doing their job. There were strict rules about when, what, and where a job was to be done. However, and thankfully, these attitudes are changing. Remote-work programs are finding their way into more and more workplaces with measureable results in terms of productivity.
According to a Microsoft Telework survey of 3,600 employees in 36 cities nationwide, 60 percent say they are actually more productive and efficient when working remotely. Respondents said that with less time spent commuting and fewer distractions they have more time to spend on their assigned tasks. The problem, based on the responses, is that only 41 percent of the companies in the survey even have remote-work policies.
A recent series on National Public Radio (NPR) focused on flexible work environments and the benefits some employees and their employers are enjoying by the development of remote-work programs. The series gave several examples of how these programs promote productivity and healthier, happier employees. One part of the series examined a workplace philosophy known as a "results-only work environment."
But do the concepts of remote work, flexible schedules, and results-only work environments have a place in the universe of information technology professionals? How flexible is your company? Can you work remotely effectively? Do you work remotely on a regular basis? What technologies are deployed to help make remote work a possibility?
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Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.