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About Telework For Teleworkers For Managers For Organizations Technology Resources

For Organizations

Intent of Telework

Management Concerns

Building a Telework Program

Define Management Support

Assemble a Program Team

Determine Program Goals

Employee & Work Suitability

Workplace & Legal Issues

Policies & Forms

Equipment Decisions


Manager Participation

Telework Coordinator

Program Communication

Program Promotion

Manager Evaluations


Is a telework training program necessary? Most experts say “yes”, but most of them look at telework from a large-organization perspective. In small organizations, it may be enough to discuss your concerns with the employee after they have studied the Employee Page in the toolkit as well as the policies you’ve assembled. In larger organizations it is probably more practical to have a formal training program.

Some organizations develop online training while others prefer in-person training where employees can interact. There are also consultants that provide telework training.

Manager Training: In some ways, it may be more important to have telework training for managers than for teleworkers. It is often the case that the ultimate success of telework is determined by the manager's own attitudes about the program and their ability and skills adapting to new methods of communication and new methods of management.

Training for managers can focus on specific skills and techniques for managing employees outside the office. Training can also provide support to managers as they transition to a new style of management. Managers need to do the following:

  • Understand why the organization is implementing telework.
  • Demonstrate a willingness to work with employees as they transition to telework.
  • Know the rules and procedures required of employees.
  • Become fluent in the use of the electronic communication tools their teleworkers will be using. Learn to use those tools with in-office employees as well as with teleworkers.
  • Learn to be specific in communicating tasks and expectations of teleworkers.
  • Measure success by the quality, quantity, and timeliness of work, not time at the desk.
  • Treat teleworkers and in-office employees equally.
  • Learn to trust their employees to get the job done.

Employees Training: At a minimum, employees should do or understand the following:

  • Read the toolkit Employee Page
  • Read and understand the Telework Policy
  • Use the Employee Self-Assessment Form
  • Understand their responsibilities (keeping track of their hours, completing forms, core work hours, policies about answering phones and emails, home-office setup, etc., as determined by the organization.)
  • Understand the importance of maintaining communication with their manager and fellow workers

Employees should also understand that telework doesn’t work for everyone, and that if it doesn’t work for them, they can request to return to the office full-time.

Some organizations report that training originally developed for teleworkers was actually beneficial to others in the organization. With that in mind, when considering what kind of training employees should have, think about whether it would benefit teleworkers, non-teleworking employees, and/or managers. For example, training in using Instant Messaging (IM) would benefit all three groups, because teleworks would use it to communicate with managers and coworkers. If managers and in-office employees know this technology managers may find that they use it to communicate with employees in the office as well as those working at home.

To help think through who would benefit from different types of training, the toolkit includes a Training Topics Checklist that can be modified. When reviewing the toolkit, jot down any topics that might be suitable for training.

In the Toolkit

Training Topics Checklist


On the Web

This will contain links to related information on the Internet

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This page was last updated on May 23, 2009