Guide to Telework in the Federal Government

Source: U.S. Office of Personnel Management, ES/WLW-04-11, April 2011

The Federal Government is a leader in the use of innovative workplace flexibilities, including telework. In March 2010, President Obama hosted a White House Forum on flexibilities, emphasizing their vital role in recruiting and retaining the best and brightest workers and maximizing their effectiveness Congress passed the Telework Enhancement Act of 2010 to catalyze expansion.

Federal telework programs are established primarily to meet agency mission and operational needs. Telework saves money by helping government reduce real estate and energy costs and promote management efficiencies; makes us more resilient in severe weather and other emergencies; improves the quality of employee work-life; and increases employment opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Advances in information technology have paved the way for increased telework. However, telework is not a new concept and is not necessarily dependent on the use of technology. The key is for managers and employees to clearly define the work expectations and objectives, and then to give employees the tools and flexibility needed to get the job done.

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