Standard specifications for road and bridge construction in many Departments of Transportation require that a flagger is utilized at all times to direct traffic in lane closure work zones on multilane highways. Utilizing flaggers as specified by these standards introduces inherent risks and varying effectiveness by positioning flaggers next to the live traffic. This paper presents the findings of a comprehensive study to assess the effectiveness and essential role of flaggers in directing work zone traffic on multilane highways and to consider alternative means of providing this function. The objectives of this study are to conduct a national survey of state DOTs to gather their feedback on the essential roles, effectiveness, and risks of utilizing flaggers to direct work zone traffic on multilane highways. A total of 100 responses were gathered in this national survey that asked respondents to identify the need, benefits, and risks of using flaggers in and around work zones. The main findings of this study on the roles and effectiveness of flaggers for directing work zone traffic control can be used to guide decision makers in changing and/or expanding existing standards and policies to improve work zone safety and mobility.