With the COVID-19 pandemic still happening, many workplaces have transitioned into a virtual setting. More workers are doing work at home rather than in the office. While there are some advantages to remote work, there are also challenges that come about for any company trying to employ this. In order to keep things running smoothly and efficiently in the business, there are a few things that it is essential for you to have. These include ways to communicate, software to track employee work hours, the right equipment for workers to use and an open mind.
1. Effective Communication Platform
In the traditional office setting, you can simply walk over to someone's desk if you need something from them. When everyone is working remotely, though, communication is a bit more challenging. There are plenty of apps that everyone on your team can download so that you can chat throughout the day about different projects. You can also make sure that everyone has a company email set up. Most companies can benefit from some type of video chat software as well. This helps keep workers from feeling so isolated and keeps everyone focused on the job at hand.
2. Work Time Tracking
With your workforce at home, everyone may not be on the traditional 9-5 schedule. This can be beneficial for your company in many ways, though, as some people work better at night while others are more focused in the morning. While not always possible, it can be more effective to let your team members set their own schedule in order to reach everyone at maximum focus. You can have employees clock in on a free time card calculator so that you can easily track how many hours each employee is working every week.
3. Compatible Technology
Most businesses have some type of software program that is used to complete tasks and monitor inventory and/or production. You need to make sure that every employee has access to these systems. In order to ensure that all workers have access to the right programs, you may need to provide a company laptop to each employee. Depending on how much contact is made with clients throughout the day, it might also be beneficial for certain employees to have a company phone. This helps keep a good work-life balance; the employee does not have to worry about work-related things coming through on a personal phone.
4. Security Measures
If your company deals with any sensitive client information like credit card numbers, it is important that all employees have the proper level of security on any devices they use. You can install firewall protection and anti-virus software on the company computers that you issue. Enforce rules about how work computers can be used; emphasize that personal matters should be taken care of with the employee's own device. This will help reduce the risk of proprietary information being compromised.
5. Team Updates
Many remote workers report feeling lonely or isolated at times. In order to keep your team motivated and encouraged, be sure that you are checking in with everyone on a regular basis. You can host virtual team-building events, and encourage employees to take time to enjoy their families when appropriate. Make sure that you set boundaries for how often people are working at home since it is easy to work all the time when your office is in your house.
Almost every aspect of normal life has changed in the past few months, and it is important that you take the right steps to keep your company strong. Your workforce is the lifeblood of your business, so it is essential that each worker has what he or she needs to get a job done correctly and efficiently. Ask your remote workers what could help make their jobs easier, and be sure that you stay updated on what is working well and what needs improvement.