Teleworking is a work practice that offers benefits to business and the community.
By working from home or a location close to home (telecentre) on an occasional or regular basis, employees are able to reduce their commute time and manage their work outputs more effectively.
Results of teleworking trials indicate benefits that include increased productivity, reduced absenteeism, reduced time and costs in service delivery and increased employee motivation and morale.
Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) encourages teleworking to facilitate flexible work practices that enable staff to balance their work and family commitments.
RMS supports teleworking as a travel demand management initiative used to help modify the growth of traffic and help improve the environment.
RMS supports teleworking by:
- Providing teleworking opportunities to staff through human resources policies and access to telecentres and hot desks
- Promoting teleworking to government and business
- Providing teleworking information and advice to government and business
- Contributing to programs such as the NSW State Plan priorities for cleaner air and progress on greenhouse gas reductions, jobs closer to home and improving efficiency of the road network.
Teleworking refers to a flexible work opportunity to work for part of the time at a location some distance away from the usual work base. The location may be at home, a mobile office, a telecentre or a combination of these alternatives.
Current levels of teleworking
The number of Australians who telework has grown significantly over the past few years. In 2006 there were 1,595,500 Australians who reported that they teleworked at least some of the time, or 17 per cent of the work force. This is an increase of 370 per cent since June 2000 when the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported that there were 430,000 people who worked from home at least some of the time.
Who can telework?
A number of people may work in jobs that are suitable for teleworking.
In addition to the type of job you perform, other issues need to be taken into consideration. If you want to telework, find out what your organisations policy is on staff working from home. It is also best to discuss the possibility with your manager as you will need to ensure:
- The work can be completed efficiently.
- The productivity of related or dependent work groups affected.
- The delivery of customer service is maintained.
- Work health and safety (WHS) requirements are satisfied.
Why RMS is a leader in teleworking
RMS is a leader in teleworking because it was the first agency in Australia to trial teleworking to identify the impacts on travel behaviour. RMSwas the first State Government agency to implement a working from home policy. It is the lead agency for the promotion of the benefits of teleworking to Government and business and provides a manual for business and Government on how to set up a teleworking program. The West Gosford telecentre trial was the first of its kind for government and is a model for others to follow.
Teleworking policy and telecentres:
If you have any questions about the RMS’ teleworking policy please contact:
- Haggai Bocman on 02 8588 5682