Tele-worker promotion ideas

Yesterday I attended MTA’s Telework seminar. It provided a foundation on which to build some local or statewide efforts by MTA members. I could see a number of economic developers wanting to join in a collaborative effort. As I listened to the presentation, I came up with some ideas that might help community leaders to get a local teleworker program started:

  1. Survey non-homestead property owners for business owners and flexible workers for teleworking promotion opportunities.
  2. Create a space for co-working to host teleworking residents and visitors; provide bandwidth, professional networking and tech support.
  3. Offer and promote advanced services to your teleworker customers – data back-up, IT support.
  4. Open provider networks (within exchanges or groups of exchanges) to very high speed networking to connect collaborating creative home-workers. (For example, within all Federated or CTC exchanges, thereby avoiding off-network transport).
  5. Harvest statewide remote worker job openings from the DEED database or Monster.com on an ongoing basis and promote these opportunities to local job seekers.
  6. Implement joint marketing efforts by local telcos and economic development authorities to Twin Cities and very large regional center companies about capabilities of rural telecommunications and workforce. Bring metro companies to rural regions for job fairs. Host them in nice places!
  7. Create a local fact sheet on local telecommunications capabilities that job seekers can take to job interviews to show telework capabilities. Distribute from local workforce centers through job counselors and on display racks.
  8. Work with DEED to create a telework class offered at Workforce Centers.

Telework is a great focus for local telcos and EDA folks – because we share the same goal – rural economic vitality. If would be great to see some of these folsk get together next week at the Blandin Broadband Conference next week (Oct 13-14) in Baxter. There will be time and space for attendees to address ideas such as telework.

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