State of Utah Introduces Teleworking Program for Employees
July 16, 2019Tags: Air Quality, Jobs, Rural Economic Development
The State of Utah is implementing a statewide teleworking program.
If successfully scaled to the state employee workforce, up to 2,555 currently commuting state employees may become eligible to participate in the telework program in the coming months. This means the State could potentially save up to 1,300 pounds of emissions a month, downsize or repurpose up to 63,900 square feet of building space, and move 200 positions to more rural parts of the state.
A pilot program that began in September of 2018 consisted of 136 employees from four state agencies (DAS, DTS, DHRM, and Insurance). They worked three days a week from home and reported metrics on performance and commutes to state officials. The Department of Administrative Services monitored the pilot, and reported a 20% improvement in overall employee performance. They also concluded that the participating employees were able to save 273 pounds of C02 emissions.
During the pilot program, participating employees gave up permanent assigned work spaces, and the departments created temporary shared workspace models designed to increase building capacity and efficiency.
Under the new permanent teleworking program, the new West Valley State Office Building, approved for purchase by the State Legislature in 2019, will be retrofitted with shared “hoteling” workspaces for teleworking employees. Teleworking employees will have access to lockers to hold personal items in the office when they are off site.
“I am thrilled to see this teleworking program expand to all state agencies,” Lt. Governor Cox said. “Rolling out expanded teleworking as an option for many more state employees means that everyone wins. Employees win. Managers win. Our air wins. Rural wins. The taxpayer wins,” he continued. “It is time to see our state workforce transition to this more sustainable, efficient, balanced model.”
Teleworking will continue to be measured to manage performance. A full kit of information and trainings will be available to employees to allow for a smooth implementation and transition into this new working model.