City Staff Ideas Challenge
#nycspeaks2022 Share your ideas for bold actions the Mayor should take
Semi-finalists selected 05/02/2022 - ?Process phases
Telework for City Employees
in the future allow New York City Employees an opportunity to Telework one or two times a week. See document attached.
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It's an interesting concept if it benefits the city and people don't take advantage, which is usually the case that spoils it for everyone. I would be more favor of this for the reduction in vehicle omissions, the reduction in traffic to allow for roadwork to be accelerated, etc... If there are equal benefits to help facilitate city services as well as telework I can see this being a possibility.
We are losing staff en masse because we do not have a telework policy. It is difficult to backfill these rolls because few people want to work in an environment that has no flexibility to work from home.
I strongly agree that we need flexible telework options for city employees whose roles allow for it. COVID aside, giving back the commute time is a huge quality of life upgrade that would cost the city nothing. It would also allow greater flexibility for those with chronic illness, family/pet care needs, and just general life - how many times have people needed to take a day just to let a landlord in to fix something, when they could have just as easily been working at home during that time?
Aside from those benefits, we should also realize that many city offices are small, crowded, outdated, and do not actually have space to host regular meetings. Many office workers still take their meetings on Zoom because of this issue, which makes it even more confusing that we are asked to be at our desks each and every day to 'collaborate' when that mostly happens online.
The argument for ordering employees into the office is that the City relies on employees' money to subsidize the MTA and businesses. The NY Times published an article last week that said that Manhattan lags behind other major cities in authorizing telework and because it forecasts that each employee will spend more than $6,000 per year on goods and services. However, that forecast does not take into account the money we would spend in our own local neighborhoods as a result of teleworking. Furthermore, the City should not demand that employees report to the office solely to fund the subway and businesses. That is not our job.
Telework should also be used days in which you do not need the entire day off. For example, a doctor's visit day. Most people would love to come to work but it defeats the purpose to take 2 hours to travel, just to come in for 1 hours. So most sick leave request is entered for the entire day. Most of my request, I could have contributed to working part of the day and taking the additional time off. Both side benefits.
I think this is a great idea. especially for working parents to be able to work from home during summer months and holiday breaks when care is limited. Summer camps only run through the beginning of August and hardly program the other holiday breaks. The city should create a policy that supports the growing needs of the staff and study shows can build morale, efficiency, and productivity.
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