Telework New Zealand

Telework strategies that benefit employers, employees and society: profiting from flexibility

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Telework and transport

Traffic is a problem. It produces harmful pollution and requires ever more expensive construction projects to, in theory, keep it moving. But all we seem to do is "move the deckchairs on the Titanic": we just move the bottleneck around and create more congestion and problems. The highways and public transport routes we create are very susceptible to flooding and sea level rises, and with rising oil price uncertainty much of this investment could be wasted.

We have failed to recognise two core truths. The first is that travel is a derived need: it is derived from the way we live and work. If we changed the way we lived and worked, traffic would be less of an issue and much travel could be eliminated at source. We need new concepts in urban planning that make walking or cycling all that is needed. And we need to reduce the need for travel by changing the way we work, shop and live. The second is that, in a world of change, we need 'structural flexibility'. If a road is blocked there must be an another route available, if the whole transport network collapses we need an alternative, and when employees can't get to the office (for whatever reason) there must be ways they can work where they are.

Telework has been proven to reduce the requirement for travel and it can provide the structural flexibility we already need.

Telework New Zealand's tools help local and national governments reduce the need for travel and create truly flexible transport networks.

For more information on how we can help you, call +64 27 494 0700 or +64 9 817 8024, or email

The first step is normally a Telework Impact Report: an applied research methodology that assesses telework's potential in solving national and regional problems such as traffic congestion (and emissions), economic development, and a variety of other issues. Based on the research results the Telework Impact Report also recommends appropriate initiatives. 

Traffic Demand Management is one response that is being used in many regions and cities. However, most TDM strategies don't focus on managing or reducing demand. Rather, they focus on supplying and promoting more travel options. Actively working to reduce travel demand, although logical, is almost always ignored. Telework New Zealand has developed responsive, integrated strategies that actively reduce travel demand and provide flexible alternatives should existing infrastructure be disrupted.

Action to reduce travel demand should start with regional telework promotion campaigns. Such campaigns are cheaper than supplying additional travel modes, and can be much more effective. Telework New Zealand has tested such campaigns in New Zealand and they have been successful in many places around the world. 

Not all regions or cities can consider a full telework promotion campaign but that doesn't mean that there is nothing that can be done. Telework New Zealand has prepared a simple resource that can be easily integrated into existing publications and web sites. It has already been used in one region and introduces telework, provides tips and implementation support for employers, and includes simple case study information. 

Telework New Zealand has provided presentations and work shops for seminars and conferences.  He has worked with groups as large as 500 and as small as five -- in Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Gisborne and San Jose. (We have also delivered presentations 'virtually'.)



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Travel research highlights

Olympic Transport Action Plan (Sydney 2000)


Further reading & examples

Telecommute Connecticut, a state-wide initiative

Transportation Implications of Telecommuting, a US DoT report (1993)

Flexible working in Houston

Bevis England, Telework New Zealand,  Phone: +64-9-817 8024 or +64-27-494 0700  Skype: bevis.england

Last page update: Tuesday, 28 August 2012.  Please note that copyright on all content is retained by Bevis England.  Information may not be on-sold or used as part of any payable service or activity. Neither can it be transcribed, printed or reproduced in any form, in full or in part, without inclusion of this note. If you would like to be kept in touch, or if you have specific questions, feedback or comments please contact us.