Thanks to remote work, a pandemic and new normal induced work model, that enabled the employees to get the job done, stay productive, stay connected to their team, and work from anywhere, at any time. Incorporating remote working best practices into a company’s workplace regulations and culture results in not just happier and healthier employees, but also a stronger culture and a more productive and engaged workforce for the employer.
Remote work made it easier for people with disabilities or workers who need more flexible hours to continue and succeed in full-time jobs. According to an Owl labs survey, 16 percent of organizations are entirely remote globally. Another study revealed that 30 percent of respondents stated that working from home made them more productive and engaged.
Having clear guidance on when to work and when to end work helps many remote workers maintain a work-life balance. Setting goals that anyone can work on maintains the structure and supports the work of remote workers.
( Also Read: Employee Engagement for Remote Workers )
These 15 Work-From-Home Tips Will Make The Transition More Manageable.
Project Plan and Goal Setting
Aligning the entire team with your goals and plans can be difficult. When leading a remote team, your communication strategy shouldn’t just focus on work. One should clearly define the project’s scope, including the various roles and responsibilities of team members. It assists in keeping track of the project’s progress. The technique also helps in anticipating complications that may cause the process to divert.
Hence, create measurable success criteria after developing a clear plan and defining goals. Create a timetable that includes the deadlines for the deliverables. Also, goal-setting is an aspect of the project planning step that continues throughout the project as the demands evolve. To keep the team adaptive, it’s important to communicate expectations, project scope, and planned changes frequently and clearly.
Set a suitable location for Remote work
Remote workers are more vulnerable to stressful work, longer hours, disruption at work, and increased stress. Successful remote employees create consistent work environments. While working locations such as a coffee shop, museum, library, or bookstore offer many distinct benefits for small businesses, self-employed and remote workers, the home environment is the preference of many others.
Remote workers benefit from working at the coffee shop or coworking space because it increases productivity and provides new opportunities for collaboration. One of the most significant advantages of coworking spaces is that it allows for more conversation and contact, which leads to increased motivation.
Many remote employees, on the other hand, find themselves surrounded by distractions, the majority of which are unavoidable. They usually prefer to create a permanent workstation in their house that they can optimize for efficiency.
Set up a Proper Wi-Fi
Internet is a necessity as much as oxygen in the air. Families having parents and children, all use bandwidth at the same time, consuming on the network.
Adults may be required to participate in Zoom conferences for employment, while children may be required to participate in Zoom meetings for school. This puts a lot of pressure on the internet system. Therefore, one should not be convinced with the presence of the internet they must actually check the bandwidth and then establish a setup that would help to accomplish the work speedily.
Purchase an excellent set of headphones.
The unsung heroes are headphones. For remote employees, they’re a must-have tool. Headsets can make a big difference in how focused and effective people are at work, whether they are at home or in a crowded cafe.
Headsets can not only help the team focus on what they’re working on, but they can also help them tune out all of the distracting noises around them.
Headphones are also ideal for conversing during video chats because they make it much easier to hear what is going on.
Establish an uninterrupted communication line.
When working with a remote team, it’s critical to keep lines of communication open, clarify expectations, build trust, offer support, and use the right technology to maximize productivity. To enhance communication in a remote work environment, team leaders need to specify which communication channels to use.
They must establish regular meetings and check-in times to keep everyone up to date and on the same page and clarify who to contact in an emergency. To keep the team adaptive, it’s important to communicate expectations, project scope, and planned changes frequently and clearly.
To take control of the situation, remote team managers must always be aware of aspects such as attendance, work productivity, and the number of hours worked by each employee.
Check-ins regularly is beneficial for creating routines and ensuring that everyone is aware of what to expect and deliver. Managers must check in with their remote workers because it keeps workers informed about deadlines, job-related issues, available resources, and managers’ expectations, including working hours.
This allows participants to prepare crucial insight ahead of time, rather than being caught off guard and scrambling right before the meeting.
It’s also a great approach to acquire project updates before deadlines are missed or roadblocks become major stumbling blocks. Create a consistent check-in plan for the workday, week, or project to put this into effect.
Begin the work as one would in the office with a morning routine
Despite the flexibility, team leaders should aim to start their day with a consistent morning routine. Routines allow teams to replace willpower with habit. This allows teams to put repetitive portions of the day on autopilot, freeing up more energy for constructive work.
The most productive remote workers keep to a regular work schedule and a morning routine that is comparable to what they would do in an office.
Encourage the team to develop a solid morning routine, to obtain a significant increase in their productivity instead of wasting their mornings surfing the web or watching TV or reels.
Scheduling work as per the time zones
Remote work has opened the opportunity to hire the best talent from any part of the world. However, it came with a few challenges such as time zone limitations.
An office time zone guarantees that all employees are working at the same time, allowing for more efficient communication. Employees won’t have to waste time wondering if their co-worker has started or finished their workday and will be more likely to ask for their assistance or seek their advice as a result.
Inclusion of Collaborative tools in the system
Delays in making a decision result in total cost overruns and harm to profit for the company. To make prompt decisions, it’s critical to categorize communications by topic, project, workforce, or whatever that makes sense for the business. Slack, for example, is a collaborative application that allows team heads to bring the right people and information together.
Similarly, video calls improve productivity, enhance efficiency, lower travel costs, and foster collaboration in general. Video conferencing allows teams to make use of all of the advantages without having to travel for face-to-face communication regularly.
Encourage Face to Face Communication
Team leads must spend as much time as possible with their employees. Aside from maintaining a constant schedule, it’s also a good idea to incorporate face-to-face communication. With audio-visual assistance, concepts are easier to grasp, and misinterpretations are eliminated.
As a result, rather than perceiving co-workers as a name and a static image, they may get to know the genuine person behind the screen.
Consider doing the daily or weekly check-ins face-to-face when making a critical decision.
Maintain regular working hours.
Work completion within the stipulated time is an indicator of efficient management. Regularity and discipline at work save remote employees from burnout.
Successful remote teams keep regular working hours even if they are somewhat changed to meet each person’s time zone. For most people, the morning is a good time for serious work, so try to complete difficult tasks as soon as possible. The manager must try to have at least some of the work hours overlap with the bulk of the team for the greatest results. This makes it easier for all parties involved to stay in touch.
Make time for team bonding
Working from home can help one focus on their work, but it can also make them feel disconnected due to the lack of bond with peers.
While it will consume some of the team’s time, it’s also a good idea to incorporate some personal time so that everyone can get to know one another. This helps to establish a strong business culture and fosters the kind of team coupling that can be difficult to achieve when everyone works remotely.
Allocate the right roles and responsibilities
Appropriate delegation of roles and responsibilities allows employees to operate more efficiently and effectively. It also improves operational efficiency by removing redundancy and confusion.
Everyone in the team usually knows what to work on and who is responsible for what. Having well-defined roles and duties makes, managing a virtual team simple.
This important stage guarantees that everyone understands their responsibilities and can be held accountable for them.
Individuals and teams gain trust when managers hold all employees accountable for doing what they are expected to do.
Accountability helps the company save time and effort by reducing the amount of time and effort they spend on useless tasks. This effectively teaches employees to respect their work when the company holds them accountable for their behavior. Accountability, when done correctly, can improve the team’s skills and confidence.
Ergonomics and Feedback
Advice the team to use the most comfortable chair with back support they can find. Since they are bound to work from the place of preference a wrong sitting posture could lead to sprains and put a pause to the continuity of work. They must use the screen guards and avoid working in poor light conditions that could strain their eyes.
Finally, check-in with the co-workers regularly to see how things are going. Track what is simpler and more challenging when working remotely through regular feedback. This information can help management now and, in the future also.
However, one of the benefits of working remotely is flexibility, and sometimes one needs to extend the day or start early to fit in someone else’s time zone. Managing communications and scheduling in a remote team can be tricky, especially if people work in different time zones.
Therefore, a remote infrastructure demands a proper plan, a process, or a procedure executed using appropriate gadgets combined with relevant applications. These best practices enable a seamless remote work environment that ensures productivity.