The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

September 22, 2011
Column Extra: Report estimates telework's impact at $6.1 billion

110923 TRN chart.JPGWith just 400 to 450 words for our weekly State Worker column, most of what we learn each week never sees print. Column Extras give you some of the notes, the quotes and the observations that inform what's published.

Our column in today's Bee briefly refers to part of a report by the San Diego-based Telework Research Network that concludes the state could save millions of dollars each year by letting employees telework two days per week.

The report goes further, estimating that teleworking at both state and local government levels would have a total impact on budgets and social costs of $6.1 billion, as the chart at right shows. (Click it to enlarge.)

Some experts, such as Cal Poly Pomona professor Ralph Westfall, caution that telework impact estimates are often overstated by firms hoping to cash in on the trend. (Click here for links to some of what Westfall has written about the topic.)

The Telework Research Network study makes the following assumptions:
• Telecommuting frequency: average of 2 days per week
• Employees who want to telecommute: 79 percent
• Jobs compatible with telework: 51 percent of state government employees, 48 percent of local government employees

Here's the TRN report prepared for today's "Work Anywhere Symposium" at Sac State:
The Bottom Line on Telework

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About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at jortiz@sacbee.com.

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