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Remote work can be a great way to keep your employees safe during the pandemic, but it’s not without its challenges. There are good and bad aspects of having your workforce at home, and as the pandemic continues, it’s important to come up with strategies to make remote work sustainable for your business. With that in mind, here are some tips from Tech Thinga.
After several months of living in a COVID-19 world, many companies and employees have adapted to working from home. While it may be the new norm, it’s still challenging to achieve the same level of collaboration with team members from afar. As you’re considering how to make your remote team more effective, iPEC suggests ways to improve communication.
One excellent way to keep everyone on the same page is by developing work schedules that accommodate both your remote and in-office workers. Even if they have slightly different start and finish times, some overlap will allow for consistent time slots each day where everyone can interact.
It’s a great idea to have weekly or daily team meetings, which can happen over video conferencing. This will provide an opportunity for your team to feel connected to one another and check in, and will also help with group cohesion while the team is spread out.
Be sure you take advantage of cloud sharing for storing files and collaboration. Google Drive is one great way to work on documents with members of your team, as it allows for dual editing and writing and makes it easy to share project files.
While emails are great for staying in touch on projects, encourage your team to call or video chat with their coworkers. Not only will it help your team feel more connected to one another, but it also allows for greater collaboration on projects and more nuanced discussions.
Remember to include everyone in group emails, and ensure your communications are clear and inclusive. When you cut out in-person meetings, it can be tough to keep your team on the same page. By involving all members of your team, you’ll be able to reconnect with each employee, and have an opportunity to kickstart any stalled momentum.
Tips for remote workers
If any member of your team is struggling to make remote work a sustainable aspect of their lifestyle, Remote Year recommends offering some helpful tips. Encourage self-care, including taking regular breaks throughout the workday, adding some plants to your office to help instill a sense of peace and calm, establishing boundaries with family members to help maintain routine work hours, and finding a comfortable place at home to work.
Morale is another area of importance: encourage “water cooler” chats between your team members to keep up their momentum, and remind them of the importance of video chatting for getting some face-time with one another. They’ll feel more connected and motivated by regular check-ins.
If you discover that your team is stretched too thin with the remote work environment, you can always hire freelancers to help out. Freelancers can be great for companies that changed the way they operate in the pandemic era. You get to hire the skills and abilities you require without the commitment of a permanent employee, and if things go well you can always offer an upgraded arrangement.
It’s important to let freelancers know the difference between being an employee and a freelancer, if they’re not sure. This includes informing them about the differences involving sick leave, paid time off, and even things like insurance and healthcare (click here for an in-depth guide to health care as a freelancer). Most likely, this will apply to your remote workers as well.
If you own a retail business and you can’t afford to reopen your brick-and-mortar full-time, consider hiring an e-commerce services professional to help launch an e-commerce site to sell your products. If your event company has morphed from in-person events to virtual experiences, you’ll likely need a freelancer who can help create digital content for your audience. Or if you need to collect and analyze data from your site, you may need a web analytics services professional.
Learning to adapt and thrive during COVID-19 is a challenge for all companies. Whether your company is fully remote or if you have a hybrid of in-office and remote workers, be sure to use this advice to stay connected and to improve collaboration between your team members.