|Type of paper:||Research paper|
|Categories:||Information technologies Job|
Over the recent years, information technology has played a vital role in transforming the way in which people relate to their certain type of work. Teleworking involves the use of specific information technologies such as computers for work-related purposes. Usually, teleworking acts as an alternative source for working at home or any other place which is considered as conducive ( Gilyot, LaGrange, & Zhang, 2002). However, the concept of teleworking has been regarded as a form of business which cannot be practiced at the mainstream level. The reason for this is because there is no significant representation for companies to manage teleworkers effectively. Also, various factors such as technological barriers and literacy skills are often required in programs associated with teleworking for successful implementation purposes. This research aims to examine the kind of impacts that teleworking generates as well as implementing the solutions of the issue for effective purposes.
Teleworking can be categorized into different types which include home-based telecommuting, satellite offices, neighborhood work centers and mobile working. Home-based telecommuting is whereby employees carry out their work mostly at home though not certainly on a daily basis. Often, a teleworker will communicate or receive certain information from the management through various means such as the use of electronic email or personal computers which contains links to office servers. On the other hand, satellite offices provide a variety of options for the employee to choose. In most cases, employees are equipped with the ability to choose a certain location that is convenient for them, whether they prefer working at home or choosing another location can be considered as convenient.
A neighborhood work center resembles a satellite office in particular. However, one of the main differences between the two is that the neighborhood work center can often accommodate many employees of a certain company. For instance, an office building can be shared by several companies in which each company has its separate office within the building. Furthermore, both satellite office and neighborhood work centers can act as optional sources for home-based telecommuting. The reason for this is because commuting is often minimized thus the employee can manage to save time, cost expenses and stress while working in an office as compared to a home setting. Additionally, mobile working involves using communication technologies while frequently moving from one place to another for work-related purposes either at home, hotel or any other place.
Benefits of Teleworking
According to the various studies that have been carried out, the findings obtained have shown that teleworking has numerous advantages towards the working environment. As a result, there has been an increase in productivity regarding the type of work that is carried out. Some of the benefits associated with teleworking include regulating the balance between home and work life, enhancing better flexibility within the field of work. Furthermore, reduction in commuting, reduction in ongoing business expenses as well as improving the knowledge and skills that an employer can acquire towards a certain aspect of the company (BAILEY & Kurland, 1999).
Nevertheless, employees are guaranteed safer working condition and an environment which is free of distractions. Thus, they are more likely to receive fewer interruptions in comparison to working in a traditional office. Furthermore, the programs associated with teleworking can guarantee compliance of certain regulations thus enabling firms to meet the certain demands. For example, the Clean Air Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act are some of the regulations involved in such an activity. In general, teleworking acts as an added advantage for people who prefer to work at specific places such as their homes due to various reasons including difficulties in traveling to their required workplace.
Challenges of Teleworking
Several challenges are often encountered in teleworking especially when an organization attempts to integrate the practice into the environment which is based upon a traditional office. Such challenges include social isolation, career progression, lack of support and blurring of boundaries among others. Moreover, various questions usually tend to arise about the employee's performance such as measurement of productivity and trust awareness (BAILEY & Kurland, 1999). The presence of employees matters a lot in an organization because certain records can be kept regarding their performance and identification of strengths and weaknesses by their managers.
Social isolation is one of the common factors that teleworkers often tend to experience. People share ideas based on their experience with a particular issue, and in turn, the information gathered can have a profound effect towards the performance of associated individuals as well as the organization. In most cases, social isolation is considered as a disadvantage about the productivity of the teleworker as new ideas towards a specific subject are limited. Another factor that contributes to the challenges that teleworkers face is lack of support. Lack of support especially technical-related matters can be a major concern for teleworkers. Providing the technical support that is needed for devices such as computers is often difficult in a managed office environment.
The progression of career matters a lot when working in an organization as it enables people to gain promotion in their specific field of work. For instance, career marginalization plays a vital role in influencing certain prospects related to careers. Teleworkers specifically lack this source as a way of making progress in their careers. As a result, they are often disadvantaged due to they're 'out of flow' status thus they tend to be less aware of the political activities happening around them such as allocation of resources, evaluation of certain principles, compensation and the recent advancement facilities that an organization can implement. Finally, blurring of specific boundaries also contributes to the disadvantages of teleworking. To illustrate, the transition between roles has been proven to be effective regarding regulating the time that is required to create a balance between home and work. In this case, working at home limits the distinction between roles which in turn can affect the teleworker in general.
Teleworking has proven to be an effective form of business practice despite its drawbacks. This form of business practice in most cases affects individuals in many work-related areas both on a professional level as well as psychological. The projects involved in teleworking should be widely considered as eligible as they effectively contribute to the improvement of the information systems. Furthermore, identification of benefits serves an important purpose in the process involved in enrolment for information systems development. This kind of approach can equip one with specific knowledge regarding the values which technology possesses.
In most cases, the working conditions of employees matter a lot in determining the kind of benefits that might be generated. Factors such as fewer interruptions, fewer problems regarding motivation and reduction of the time used in traveling as well as increased job satisfaction can enable teleworkers to improve their job performance. Balancing is often required especially for women who manage both childcare and work. Working from home can be a viable choice for such women as this will minimize the stress which they tend to experience while in an office. As a result, women may be able to acquire flexibility thus maintaining their productivity.
People who work from home tend to have a different experience in comparison to those who work in an office-based environment. Recent technological advancements such as the introduction of broadband have made it possible for Information Technology management to come up with new teleworking solutions thus enhancing its growth. For instance, the introduction of office-caliber resources has made it possible for employees to have an office experience while working at home (John Lippis III, 2008). As a result, teleworking solutions have generated productivity in many aspects regarding this concept. Teleworking individuals also can manage to balance their routines thus gaining value by minimizing the time that is spent on commuting and also reducing the cost of gasoline consumption. Employers can often benefit from teleworking in certain ways such as increased workforce, reduction of costs such as office expenses, an increase in productivity level and business expansion among others.
Growth in teleworking can be enhanced by specific fundamental factors which include business dynamics and benefits, technology enablement, productivity and business continuity. To begin with, business dynamics and benefits are associated with specific trends such as globalization. Globalization acts as a viable source for employers which in turn equips them with the knowledge and skills required for the agility of certain operations. Globalization serves a purpose of expanding the workforce thereby attracting more employees in an organization. In turn, it promotes teleworking as the platform associated with this kind of business model. On the other hand, the enablement of technology has enabled multiple services to converge alongside with technologies creating a high growth rate in teleworking with services like a broadband connection being one of the main contributors.
Teleworkers can be able to access all kinds of resources as a result of the enhanced productivity due to high-speed networks and integrated communications. Working at home ensures efficient productivity thus improving the focus that is required with minimal interruptions. In matters related to raising concerns or issues to the business manager regarding a specific subject, various communication tools can be assessed including social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, electronic mails and IP Videoconferencing etcetera. Moreover, infrastructure can play a vital role in the productivity of an organization. Business continuity is associated with being an important driver regarding this concept. Furthermore, infrastructure can also increase the operations involved in businesses.
Making skeptical claims is one of the common factors that decision makers should consider when undertaking this kind of approach towards teleworking. The claims can often relate to the effects of telework which are not based on an empirical type of rigorous research. For instance, several researches have suggested that the level of teleworking participation can often be a disadvantage regarding visibility which in turn can affect the progress of careers as a whole. Therefore, it is important for decision-makers to come up with well-structured telework and framing an organizational policy regarding the issue involved. As a result, the research-based findings will help in identifying possible outcomes associated with their industries and organizational culture. The findings might also act as an added advantage for employees both on a macro and micro level at different stages of their careers.
Training Managers and Employees for Telework
Time is considered essential in a telework relationship. This factor is among one of the main issues that managers of teleworkers need to understand. Supervision can be viewed regarding making transitions from managing time to managing project as this will mostly affect the productivity of an organizations telework program (Cascio, 2000). The training is usually formalized and divided into four categories which include teleworker trai...
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