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Happy Telework Week! How will you be spending your time? Working remotely from home or on the road, taking Skype calls in your bunny slippers? The week, brought to you by Telework Exchange and Cisco for the second time, aims to encourage Federal, state, and local agencies, private sector organizations and individuals to pledge to telework.

Telework Week 2012

As part of this initiative, they surveyed those who had already made pledges to determine what tools they plan to use during Telework Week. These pledges, while not dramatic, can have a big impact and are an indication that more companies are taking steps to help employees work more efficiently.

  • 89% of pledges plan to use a laptop
  • 57% plan to use VPN access
  • 23% to use virtual desktops
  • Nearly 18% will use video conferencing
  • 19% will use other various forms of collaboration tools
  • Almost 5% will use tablets

At present, approximately 63,886 pledges have been made. These pledges add up to big savings -- an estimated US$ 4,747,621 can be saved by teleworking during Telework Week. But it’s not just saving money that makes Telework Week lucrative -- from a environmental perspective, 5,780,839 pounds (2,890.42 tons) of pollutants could be saved during Telework Week.

But money talks -- if all pledges teleworked for a year, they would collectively save more than US$ 37 million in commuting costs. According to the most recent Telework Week data, the average teleworker will save approximately US$ 60 during Telework Week by not commuting, which translates to almost US$ 3,000 a year (per average worker) in commuting savings.

So what’s your excuse? Whether it’s an effort to thwart higher fuel prices or employ a more geographically diverse workforce, teleworking can help. You can make your pledge today or consult a variety of resources designed to ease the burden of going mobile. 

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Money Talks, But Security Risks Scream

Of course, making teleworking work takes more than just a pledge -- it takes a serious discussion and implementation of security and risk management. Let Telework Week serve as an impetus for enabling these types of discussions. What better way to celebrate than to get IT, human resources, finance and other necessary departments in a room to discuss how teleworking can help save money, increase productivity and the challenges needed to overcome to make it a reality.