Telework & Flexible Work Schedules

Work: It’s a verb, not a noun. There are multiple ways to accommodate how, when and where work functions are performed.

In today’s dynamic work environment, many employees are choosing to fulfill their job duties through non-traditional means. Telecommuting, compressed work weeks, and flex time are great alternatives to the traditional 5 day work week. The resources listed on this page can help both employers and employees initiate one of these alternatives.


Telework is the use of digital technologies to allow people to work from a location other the central office or primary duty location (bringing work to people rather than bringing people to work). Telework not only eliminates commute trips, it also provides continuity of operations for organizations and worksites during extreme weather conditions, disasters, or other abnormal circumstances.;

Telework Toolkit The Telework Toolkit is a free resource for individuals and organizations that want to learn more about telework or start a telework program.

Executive Order re: Telework In 2001 the Governor of Washington State signed an executive order establishing the Washington State Telework and Flexible Work Hours Program. Click on the link to view the text of the executive order.

Telework Exchange The Telework Exchange is a public-private partnership whose purpose is to eliminate barriers to telework.

Work Options Work Options is another great resource for equipping people with the tools and tactics they need to establish a flexible work arrangement.

Compressed Work Week

Alternative work schedules are becoming desirable to many employees. By allowing employees to adjust their work schedules, companies are not only able to recruit and retain valuable employees, but they also make it possible for them to completely eliminate commute trips on certain days by compressing their work weeks.

Typical Compressed Work Schedules

  • 4/10 work week- Forty hours are worked in four 10-hour days, thus reducing the employee’s commute trips by 20 percent.
  • 9/80 work week- Eighty hours are worked in nine days with the tenth day off, thus reducing the employee’s commute trips by 10 percent.
  • 3/12 work week- Thirty-six hours are worked in three days, which means the employee commutes two fewer days than the typical 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. worker.

Employers generally report a reduction in tardiness and absenteeism for employees on compressed work weeks and flextime. This is attributed to the employees’ ability to commute outside of the rush hour and their increased flexibility in scheduling appointments and errands.

Implementing a Compressed Work Schedule Program – Learn the process involved in conceptualizing, designing, and implementing a program. Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Page WSDOT flexible work page.

Flex Time

Flex-time offers employees varying times to arrive and depart from work without changing the number of their daily work hours. While flex-time does not in itself eliminate drive alone commuting, it enables employees to take advantage of biking, carpooling, vanpooling, or riding the bus.

Work Options is another great resource for equipping people with the tools and tactics they need to establish a flexible work arrangement.