Organisation - December 3, 2009

Green employee works part-time from home

Wageningen UR needs to encourage working from home. Distance working helps to pave the way for a more sustainable organization, according to the task force 'Sustainable employee'.

Working from home is currently not stimulated. But this has to change, the task force says. Working from home lessens travelling between home and workplace and that is good for the environment.
Work more from home is one of the proposals presented by six task forces at the Forum last week. The six groups have been formed to find concrete ways to enable Wageningen UR to make company operations greener.
Working from home is part of 'the new work practices'. This term also includes a proposal to consider a part of the daily commuting time in the train as working time. The task force thinks that about three quarters of commuting time in trains or buses can be gainfully employed. If commuting time becomes working time, more people will leave the car aside.
Feel good
Currently, about a quarter of the employees who live close to the workplace (maximum 7.5 kilometres) commute by car. This number has to be reduced. Paid parking, for example, can be introduced. 'But we want to use the carrot rather than the stick, says Tineke Tromp, spokesperson for the task force. Tromp wants to create a 'feel good' context about sustainable behaviour. 'We have to offer an easily attainable alternative.'
Moreover, only a third of the kilometers covered by employees are home-workplace related. More than half of the kilometres are due to overseas travel. The video conference offers an alternative. Make this more accessible, proposes the mobility task force.
Greening would also be seen in other areas, such as the canteens of Wageningen UR. In 2013, all packaging, cutlery and cups need to be decompostible. Canteen food will also be produced in a sustainable way. Which proposals will be chosen is yet unclear. The sustainability project group, which oversees all the groups, will submit a plan in February.

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