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More employees teleworking, OPM data shows

Feb. 17, 2011 - 06:00AM   |  
By STEPHEN LOSEY   |   Comments
Traffic departs Fort Belvoir, Va., and attempts to cross the intersection with Route 1. Almost 114,000 federal employees teleworked regularly in 2009, the Office of Personnel Management said Feb. 17. That's about 11,000 more than teleworked in 2008, according to OPM stats. But it's still fewer by more than 5,000 of the employees who teleworked in 2005.
Traffic departs Fort Belvoir, Va., and attempts to cross the intersection with Route 1. Almost 114,000 federal employees teleworked regularly in 2009, the Office of Personnel Management said Feb. 17. That's about 11,000 more than teleworked in 2008, according to OPM stats. But it's still fewer by more than 5,000 of the employees who teleworked in 2005. (Army Corps of Engineers)

Almost 114,000 federal employees teleworked regularly in 2009, the Office of Personnel Management said Thursday. That's about 11,000 more than teleworked in 2008, according to OPM stats. But it's still fewer by more than 5,000 of the employees who teleworked in 2005.

OPM said that 10.4 percent of eligible employees, or 5.7 percent of all federal employees, teleworked in 2009.

OPM said its Employee Viewpoint Survey results show that when unwritten, ad hoc arrangements are factored in, about 22 percent of federal employees telework at least part of the time.

President Obama in December signed into law the 2010 Telework Enhancement Act requiring agencies to identify which employees are eligible to telework and notify them, designate a high-ranking telework managing officer, and require employees and managers to sign written agreements spelling out their responsibilities when an employee teleworks.

OPM Director John Berry said that increasing the use of effective telework is a high priority for the administration.

"The new telework law and this report reinforce that increasing the strategic use of telework will help the federal government improve resiliency and achieve continuity of operations in emergencies, reduce management costs and help our employees to manage their own work and life obligations," Berry said in a statement.

OPM said it will send agencies guidance on implementing the new telework policy by the end of March. By June 9, all agencies must tell every employee whether they can telework.

OPM said it will start asking agencies this fall for statistics on teleworking in 2010.

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