A Federal News Network survey has found that 48 percent of federal contractors and employees said they would like to telework on a daily basis and 35 percent said they would choose to work remotely three to four days each week if they had no restrictions post-pandemic, FNN reported Wednesday.
FNN conducted an online survey of 2,023 federal employees, contractors and readers from Dec. 8 to 21 about their views on the future of telework in government and found that most survey respondents said their productivity has either improved or remained the same since the COVID-19 pandemic started in March.
The survey also showed that 53 percent of respondents said they believe their agencies’ support for telecommuting will increase after the health crisis, while 16 percent said they were not sure how their organizations might support or adopt remote work after the pandemic.
“Our organization used to be against telework, but productivity increased so much they could not ignore that and are now embracing it,” said one respondent. “Established teams are being given the option to continue teleworking with in-person meetings at least once per week so any new team members can put a face to a name and integrate easier. The face-to-face meetings will only happen once the pandemic ends.”
Most federal employees said they believe the use of mobile devices and other physical equipment and collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams and Zoom would continue even after the pandemic. Others said their agencies would depend more on cloud-based platforms to perform their work.
Some respondents said they expect file sharing, electronic signature, virtual training, conferences and on-boarding to persist beyond the pandemic.
“The ways in which we leverage technology to connect with internal and external stakeholders [may change],” one respondent said. “We have become more efficient with less in-person interaction. Limited travel budgets can also be maximized through advancements in communications technology. Overall, we have learned to become more efficient with less. It’s really the elephant in the room.”