The Dark Side of Telecommuting – Is a Tipping Point Approaching?

Source: Stephen Ruth, George Mason University – School of Public Policy, July 7, 2011

From the abstract:
This chapter proposes a cautionary view of the potential challenges that would arise if telecommuting implementation increases significantly beyond its present, popular, highly successful baseline. Current telecommuters are the cream of the crop — mature, carefully trained, and mostly from significantly higher-than-average income and education levels. But as more persons are added in telecommuting plans, there may be serious problems. Several of the challenges associated with greater telecommuting participation are described: difficulties in assessing current telecommuting demographics, problems in the evaluation of productivity, the dilemma of determining verifiable costs and benefits, the drawbacks and distractions in home-siting of telework as the levels of education and experience decrease, the imbalance of broadband service, especially for the poor, and the reluctance of some organizations to take advantage regional telecenters.

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