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Survey: Teleworking feds expect 6 more months of COVID exodus

A half year into the national emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic—and a new survey finds a majority of feds who telework expect that situation to continue for at least another six months.

The Government Business Council, the research unit of GovExec which published the survey and its analysis, reports that roughly three-quarters of feds continue to telework. The poll was conducted just this month, and garnered 1,028 completed responses.

Most teleworking feds report believing that health concerns comprise legitimate reasons behind the push for remote work—and a majority, 53 percent, also report that telework is causing either no or minimal impact on productivity. Such statistics are reassuring, and indicate confidence and solidarity among employees of federal agencies in a difficult time.

But the survey also laid bare some disturbing figures. A large plurality of feds, about 39 percent, report that “politics” is one of several “factors” other than health concerns that are or will be playing a role in influencing the timeline on returning to offices and workplaces. Also unsettling is the fact that numerous repatriations of workers have been slammed as being unsafe—sometimes, thankfully, have been stopped or delayed, as well as scrutinized in many cases by inspectors general and other oversight across parts of the civil service.

Having noted these concerning facts, the analysis observes, the flow of feds back to bricks-and-mortar workplaces—so far—has been but a trickle.

Reader comments

Tue, Oct 13, 2020

I work for DoD. Upper management always says we are a "Team". Really? There is special treatment for those teleworking but for the other part of the workforce no one seems to care. I see this division all the time. Bad for morale. I hope we can all get back to being a team again & getting through this together. There is definite effects on the productivity as well. Time to stop babying some & disregarding others!

Mon, Oct 12, 2020

All of these teleworkers are just goofing off. None of them ever goofed off when I had them chained to their desks making money for our CEO.

Thu, Oct 8, 2020 Teleworking increases productivity

Federal agencies are showing more productivity and increased morale from teleworking. People complaining about teleworkers need to stop blaming and scapegoating others and talk to their supervisor if they don't like their working conditions.

Thu, Sep 24, 2020

either you do your job or you dont. telework has zero impact on someone who does not have the integrity to be doing what they are supposed to be doing. slackers are going to slack whether they are in an office or at their house. So, because the same gov't that is maximizing telework, is the same Gov't that is forcing daycares and schools to close, which in turn forces those affected employees to stay home to care for their dependents, they should be paid less somehow? Wow!!

Thu, Sep 24, 2020 clerk -sa

I saw all this message regarding the teleworks. I am not saying it's right or wrong. we all need to get this covid/pandemic over with. Yes, teleworkers are not doing their work. I have already seen it many time. Again, nobody is wrong and not stupid either.

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2020 Digital Almanac

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