The blizzard of 2010 has brought the Federal government to a halt as snow cripples Washington D.C. The good news: The shutdown may convince the Feds to change their anti-telework culture.
It was fairly obvious during the course of Wednesday that every person I dealt with was essentially working from home. The Internet and a little IT---virtual private networks aren't all that revolutionary these days---make that possible. Our government hasn't gotten the memo.
According to the Washington Post, about a third of Washington D.C.-based employees at the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and General Services Administration logged onto the government's mainframes from home.
A third of workers with the ability to work from home is a start. Two-thirds or 90 percent would be much better. The Feds shouldn't get a snow day. They should formulate telecommuting policies so a little snow (ok a lot) doesn't result in a shutdown.
We the people should not have to read stories about how a government shutdown due to snow costs the taxpayers $100 million a day. Taxpayers are telecommuting. Perhaps the Feds should too.
The Post story cites cultural barriers, management resistance and lack of policies as reasons why government workers don't telecommute more.
In an August report, OPM director John Berry said there has been "a steady albeit very slow progress in telework" in the Federal government. Berry added that there is "significant work ahead to develop a strong telework culture."
Here's a look at the big findings from the OPM report:
Telework is just standard practice in business continuity planning. Shouldn't the government have a plan?
Here's a look at the state of telework in the government.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com