The Pros And Cons Of Telecommuting Option In The Workplace

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There are several elements that pose challenges for the employees and employers when implementing a telecommuting option in the workplace. Among them are performance management and the ability to keep employees motivated while working independently. However, probably the most challenging element to replace would be lack of communication stemming from the employees being physically separated from each other and gaining trust. There is much that is lost when physical contact and face to face interaction are absent. For instance, it can be difficult to accurately display emotion or concern through text and the element of trust may not develop. Without this physical aspect, we no longer have the familiar tools for communication that are naturally used: body language, inflection in the human voice and hand gestures. We cannot remotely detect a flip of the head, roll of the eyes or look of amazement. All of these gestures help us communicate with each other and derive meaning to accompany the words we speak. The option to telecommute requires teamwork among the entire team and the administration. This team consists of professionals working remotely in various locations. Some members may work out of their homes; some may work in co-working offices, while others might work in branch offices. All, however, must commit to working on the same team and working toward the same objectives. Virtual team members collaborate and work together from separate locations by leveraging the technology available today: instant messenging, web conferencing, Skype, online project management software, etc. These updated technical systems are very important to help the telecommuters communicate successfully. Collaboration is always important, face-to-fac... ... middle of paper ... ...ine-to-five schedule, virtual employment can be anytime, anywhere. Current management policies and procedures may not be prepared to handle the issues that arise for telecommuters at present; typically these rules and regulations fall behind current practices. Therefore, changes and revisions need to be considered along with a study of the lack of clarity regarding occupational liability and employer responsibility for telecommuters. Among both business and academic communities there is a general belief that the more a business firm is “collaborative” as a team, the more successful it will be and that collaboration is more essential than in the past. A collaborative, team-oriented culture won’t produce benefits if there are inadequate information systems in place to enable collaboration. The tables below are examples of tools that can be used and benefits provided.

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