Bring Telework Back!
Mayor Dave Bronson
We ask Mayor Dave Bronson to adopt a Telework Policy for all AMEA employees.
Mayor Dave Bronson
From: [Your Name]
The Covid-19 pandemic reshaped the way Municipal staff work. Through this difficult time, Municipal departments, agencies, and AMEA employees successfully demonstrated their ability to work remotely. Municipal service delivery provided by AMEA staff did not stop. AMEA members stepped up and proved that working remotely really works. The question of telework continues to remain a significant issue for AMEA members who have been compelled to return to their offices while Non-Reps are allowed to use, and benefit from, telework. We ask that Human Resources focus on a permanent municipality-wide telework policy as part of a plan to build a stronger Anchorage and attract a talented and dedicated workforce.
Before the pandemic, working in an in-person office environment offered impromptu opportunities for collaboration and team building. Today, technological advances make these same opportunities possible while working remotely. Microsoft Teams and screen sharing are amazing tools which are still used consistently to great effect. While telework may not be appropriate or desirable in every situation, we now know municipal employees need not be in-person to be efficient. Furthermore, there is good evidence from global studies that telework frees employees from common workplace distractions.
Allowing AMEA members to continue to work remotely saves desk and office space, reduces the spread of cold and flu by allowing staff to work from home when sick, and (during this time of high gas prices) reduces the costs of commuting. Cutting down on commuting hours frees up time for exercise, community building, caregiving, and rest. Preserving the possibility of working remotely makes for a happier municipal worker and a healthier Anchorage. Offering the option to telework increases the Municipality’s competitive edge as an employer in this tight labor market. Rather than compromising efficiency, this simple step will boost employee energy, health, retention, and morale while at the same time saving municipal funds by reducing the Municipality’s office and carbon footprint.
As noted above, municipal business can be conducted efficiently and effectively with telework options. We ask that the mayor, city manager, and Assembly Members plan for and endorse a future where municipal employees can telework.