Published April 7, 2004



Hacienda businesses have an exciting opportunity to get involved in a regional telework project as part of this year's Spare the Air program. Participating employers will get an opportunity to learn  directly how telework can be used as an opportunity to increase the flexibility of their operations. While the focus of the program will be to apply telework as a way to address issues of air quality, the fundamentals of telework can reach far beyond; allowing businesses a chance to incorporate a higher level of fluidity in their work environment to address a variety of operational needs.

Pilot Project Description
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) and Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) will conduct a pilot Spare the Air (STA) telework program with 5-7 public and private employers during the 2004 Spare the Air season. Participating organizations will get extensive, free personalized consulting services that will provide them with all the tools and expertise needed to start or expand a telework program. In return, employers will need to allow a percentage of their employees (probably 10%-15%) to telework from home on Spare the Air days during June, July, August and September. The training and technical assistance will be provided by the Telecommuting Advantage Group, an experienced and innovative telework consulting firm. Program organizers will work with each employer to measure the results of their STA telework program and report back to BAAQMD and MTC in October. If successful, a regionwide program may be conducted in 2005.

Participant Benefits
Companies will receive a number of benefits through their participation. These include:
  • A structured episodic telework program. This will include all policies and procedures, tools, and training that the organization will need to run an effective program with a minimal amount of disruption.
  • Extensive, free consulting and training around telework as a way to assure vital business continuity during emergencies caused by severe weather, earthquakes, terrorism, etc.
  • Community visibility as part of the pilot project. Organizations will be regionally and locally recognized for their participation in an innovative program to improve the quality of life through pollution and congestion reduction.
  • Extensive free information and analysis about how a general telework program would work within their specific organization, including quantifiable benefits.
Selection Criteria
Several criteria will be used to determine eligible participants. Companies interested in participating will be screened based on:
  • Number of employees. The pilot project will include a range of employer sizes so it can eventually be replicated regionally. 
  • Number of potential telecommuters. Organizations will be selected where a large percentage of company job types can accommodate periodic telework.
  • Potential trip reduction. Organizations will be selected with larger numbers of long distance commuters as employees of these companies will reduce more trip miles and be self-motivated to make telework succeed. These organizations should also be most interested in telework as an employee attraction and retention strategy.
  • Commitment of the employer.  Is this an employer with an existing telework program?  Are they on any “Best Companies to Work For” lists?  Organizations will be selected that invest in employee morale, work/life balance and other factors.
  • Location. Employers will be chosen from various parts of the Bay Area.
Additional Information
Additional details on the Spare the Air telework pilot project are available. Feel free to use the contact information below if you are interested in participating or would like to reach a representative to discuss the project.

Contact Information
Bruce Riordan
Elmwood Consulting
3115 Eton Avenue, Berkeley, California  94705
(510) 655-0939  phone     briordan@lmi.net  e-mail

Hacienda Owners Association
4473 Willow Road, Suite 105, Pleasanton, California  94588-8570
(925) 734-6500  phone     (925) 734-6501  fax     info@hacienda.org  e-mail     www.hacienda.org    WWW