Telework is the process where DHS allows an employee to work from home using a computer connection to the DHS mainframe. Keep in mind the following tips concerning telework.
- Be available. The teleworker will be required to be available to communicate with the supervisor, co-worker or the public by telephone and email during their telework schedule. Answer your phone. Same rules don’t apply at the office as when you don’t pick up your phone there, people think you are busy; if you are at home and don’t pick up the phone, they think you are not doing your job.
- No personal business. The teleworker is to perform only official duties and not conduct personal business or perform outside employment while on work status at the telework location. This is not the day to go grocery shopping at noon or to run to the mailbox on break.
- No social media. Don’t be on any social media site while working from your remote location. If someone notices that you have made a Facebook post at 10:15 am on your telework day, they are not going to think that you are on break; they are going to think that you are not doing your job.
- Don’t talk too much. Don’t let people know that you are on the patio, that it is a beautiful day or what you did at lunch….focus on work items and keep all background noises to the minimum.
- Provide updates. The teleworker is required to keep track of the work performed, e.g. Day Sheet 08AD027E / ADM-57 to be provided upon request. It is also a good idea to do a proactive morning (here’s what I’m working on) email and end of the day email (here’s a status update), especially if you are not going to be back in the office on the following day.
- Keep the same hours. Keeping the same hours as when you are in the office means that you will be accessible when people expect and were used to being able to contact you.
Remember, telework is a privilege, not an entitlement. Be a great example of an attentive, hardworking employee who happens to be at home.