Telework Reinforces the Importance of Digital Inclusion

Telework has the ability to be a real leveller in terms of social inclusion by creating a work environment where no one needs to be left behind, according to Infoxchange CEO, Peter Walton, on the eve of the ‘Teleworkforce’ Conference.

On November 14, Infoxchange will host ‘Teleworkforce’ a half day conference address telework and digital inclusion as well as the economic and social outcomes of telework (working from home) in the Not for Profit sector.

“Whilst there is clearly a business and environmental case for adopting telework, there is also a compelling case in terms of the opportunity for more socially inclusive employment practices,” Walton said.

“Telework also has the power to contribute to a more socially inclusive society by providing opportunities for people who would otherwise find it difficult to find employment.

“These people include the aged and those with a disability who may find it difficult to travel; people in remote communities who can’t find work in their chosen field or immediate area, and parents and carers whose responsibilities outside of work affect their schedules or availability.

“The advancement in communications technology, cloud computing and the rollout of a high speed broadband network gives people a chance to participate in employment through telework by removing the physical barriers presented by a commuting culture.

“Whilst the potential is great, it is critically important that more is done to overcome the barriers for entry for those wishing to engage in telework. This means not only ensuring equality of bandwidth (high speed), but also that all Australians are equipped with the skills to digitally participate and that their (potential) employers are able to measure performance by outputs and outcomes rather than time spent in the office."

Walton says that for the 600,000 Not for Profit organisations, employing over 1 million people, often with limited resources, telework has the potential to be transformative.

“By embracing technology organisations have the ability to recruit their workforce from a wider pool, improving their chances of finding a candidate to better match the needs of the job and the culture and values of the organisation.

“Telework has the ability to level the playing field by increasing the number of candidates as well as potentially saving time and money in recruitment and the ongoing costs of employee engagement," he said. 

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