Overview of Challenges Facing Federal Agencies

GAO-01-1116T: Published: Sep 6, 2001. Publicly Released: Sep 6, 2001.

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Robert E. Robertson
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Telecommuting refers to work that is done at an employee's home or at a job site other than a traditional business office. Perhaps the biggest challenge to establishing and expanding telecommuting programs in both the public and private sectors is management's concerns about the types of positions and employees suitable for telecommuting, protecting proprietary and sensitive data, and establishing cost-effective telecommuting programs. Some federal and state laws and regulations, including those governing taxes, workplace safety, workforce recordkeeping, and liability for home workplace injuries, are also potential obstacles to telecommuting. Overall, the application of state tax laws to telecommuting arrangements, as well as other laws and regulations enacted before the transition to a more technological and information based economy, is evolving and their ultimate impact remains unclear.

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