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Background: I was hired to support and manage the rollout of a new M$ Surface fleet (200 of them). This includes provisioning, training and support for troubled users of the tablets and the mobility application.

Issue: I'm down to my last 10 tablets to provision (finished by the end of this week) but the support calls I'm getting total about 4 hours a week. They have me on a casual contract for 18 hours a week - I have nothing to do and they don't want to start new projects (of which there are few) until the rollout is done. For the next 2 weeks the developer of the app is in the office supporting the users as well, exacerbating the problem.

My Feelings: I could adequately service this company via telecommute (eliminating 6+ hours of travel for me a week) for their support calls. I have a 'portfolio' of things I've achieved whilst here which include automating processes and installations. I also deployed a ticketing system early on in the piece.

Question: How do I approach the CEO (my reportable) and business owner asking for telecommute? Be proactive or wait for the work to dwindle and (I fear) them to let me go? There phone system is IP VOiP and I have faster connections at home and an unlimited mobile phone plan. I would ideally like to get a system where I journal my weekly support calls and charge them for the hourly rate I'm currently paid - a guaranteed pay of 2 hours weekly to ensure I make myself available at ALL times would also be nice.

Any input is appreciated.

Thanks, D

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You will need to approach him with a written proposal. Something he can take away and read multiple times and discuss with others if required. Your written proposal should include the following:

  • Why you want a flexible schedule?
  • How this will benefit your employer and other staff that may be affected by you working from home?
  • Describe your home work station and equipment and why it is beneficial for you to be using your work station over the equipment that has been provided.
  • How you will maintain communication with your boss, co-workers and anyone that you would be in contact with during a day in the office
  • How you will accomplish the work that you may be required to do and how you can be monitored to assure you manager that you are attaining your goals.
  • How you and your manager can regularly review if the arrangement is working out as desired and if needed you can return working to the office
  • Any needs you have specific to your position and job responsibilities.

One angle I have used previously is that your employer won't need to supply a parking space or any office space for you. (For me and my previous boss this added humour to it as he believes System Administrators take up far to much space).

When you know that you are ready to bring your case forward. Offer to try the flexible schedule on a trial basis to reassure your boss and other staff that the arrangement benefits all parties.

Not to put a downer on it but keep in mind that you were hired on a casual contract to manage and support a roll-out of a project, as well as support the devices possibly under an agreement that you would be present in the office. Speaking from experience. Managing the roll-out project is the grunt work that needed doing and it is now is the Monitoring and Controlling (Traditional Approach to Project Management) stage which can be delegated to a Helpdesk Technician which they can contact 9-5 to support after a few training courses.

  • 2
    This is a good answer. Just make sure you really down play the benefits to you. This is about serving your customer well. The best way to do this is what you are offering in the proposal. – L_7337 Mar 25 '14 at 11:34

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