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Managing Telecommuters

Ground Rules

Work is work and home is home. Create guidelines to establish performance goals. If your business requires employees to be present — or at least near a phone — during fixed hours, put it in writing and have telecommuters agree to these conditions. If your company can live with flexible hours, telecommuting employees will perceive a more valuable benefit.

Character Traits

Not everyone is cut out to be a telecommuter. If you have an employee who punches the proverbial clock exactly on time or one who needs constant hand-holding, telecommuting will likely fail. On the other hand, those who work well with minimal supervision are likely to also succeed working from home.


To ensure success and protect financially against risk, make sure your company insures itself and your telecommuter for all scenarios. Workers’ compensation, general liability and property insurance are safeguards you should consider.

Also make sure you have secure technology solutions in place, including those for file-sharing, time-tracking and emails. With so many video teleconferencing solutions available, it’s easy to get regular face time with remote employees. Done right, telecommuting can cut costs (think physical office space) and increase productivity.

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