- The Find: Allowing your team to work from home could keep morale up and save them a little money, but doing so without raising your anxiety levels means knowing how to spot who's taking advantage of your flexibility.
- The Source: 11 tips for spotting slackers from HR World.
- Heads up for tech savvy cheats: a typical automated email response is a snap to identify, but a handful of specialized programs, such as Expect, allow savvy users to set up a variety of mechanized answers to emails and IMs in order to disguise their absence.
- They'd rather enter data into spreadsheets than take on large projects: telecommuters who are reluctant to work on a time-intensive project are probably preoccupied with dirty laundry and vacuuming and are looking for a way to disguise this by performing mindless, repetitive tasks. Assign seemingly unmotivated remote workers a large (but perhaps not mission-critical) project with a tight deadline to keep them in check.
- They don't take vacation days: telecommuters will probably take less time off than on-site staff since they can run short errands and nurse minor illnesses easier than their commuting peers. But be suspicious if remote workers never go on vacation.
- They complain about their workload: managers should take employee concerns about arduous workloads seriously, but if you've given a supposedly overworked telecommuter less to do and you're still hearing complaints, be suspicious. Your employee might be whining because he or she doesn't want to do any work.
The Question: True or false: most employees will take advantage of an offer to telecommute?