June 27, 2012

Legislative Summary – The US Telework Enhancement Act


Each year, except for 2010 which has an 18 month window, the OPM submits a report to the Committee on Homeland Security and the Governmental Affairs of the Senate with a copy to the Comptroller General and the Office of Management and Budget. In that report the OPM includes statistics to measure the adoption of the program and its growth. In any year where there is a 10% difference from the previous year they include an explanation.  The report includes the method for collecting the data, the goal for the upcoming year and an assessment of progress.

Within the report, data will also be available on energy use, recruitment and retention, productivity, emergency readiness, performance and employee attitudes and opinions on telework. Most importantly, for other adopters who want to emulate the program, there will be a best practices report, something that is quite valuable to everyone trying to mature their own processes and mimic the savings and productivity gains of the Act.


While all departments can create test programs, to get reimbursed for travel during a test program they must sign an agreement with the Administrator of General Services which will pay for up to ten simultaneous tests in each department. Tests are designed to enhance cost savings or any other efficiency that accrue to the Government.  For that reimbursement each department must submit their results which include data on the number of visits to a pre-existing duty station are made by the employee, the paid travel expenses of the agency and the employee and any other information that will helps the Administrator, the telework Managing Officer or Congress understand the test and its impact on the program.


While the Act applies only to agencies of the federal government, the OPM is making sure all Americans benefit from this change in work organization. Within the act the OPM is charged with the responsibility to research the use of telework by public and private sector    entities, to review the outcomes of the increase in telework on energy consumption, job creation and availability, urban transportation patterns and the dispersal of work during emergencies. All this data including studies and reviews are available to the public.

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I am a content strategist and copywriter specializing in business intelligence.

Best Wishes, David Pederson

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