The remote work model is a great way to increase productivity and lower costs for companies. Since the world is threatened by COVID-19, it also serves health benefits to everyone. According to Statista, one-third of employees are working remotely, which is a significant number considering the relatively short history of the model.
However, it is important to remember that working from home is a new model in the business world, and there are significant challenges. These range from cybersecurity concerns to collaboration issues.
Luckily, we’re learning how to overcome these hardships as more companies adopt this model. Here are some solutions for work from home organizations that will help them overcome the struggles of remote work.
Follow up with employees on one-on-one meetings
The remote work model can be a little demotivating for employees, and they might feel distracted or alienated from the work environment. If the only communication channel of employees with their supervisors is email, there is a great risk of tasks not getting done.
In order to prevent this, you need to follow up with remote employees via personal meetings, maybe even on a daily basis. Schedule meetings to learn about the state of the tasks, give them feedback, make sure to communicate with mutual understanding and respect.
In addition to team meetings, personal check-ups are crucial for keeping your employees on track and helping them motivate more.
Specify regular hours
The remote work model poses a potential threat to work and personal life balance. Since employees are already at their home, some of them might feel like they’re not doing enough, and work even in off-hours.
When employees lay themselves out like that, burnout is more than likely. Burnouts move employees away from their jobs, distort their mental health, and decrease productivity as a result.
You can easily prevent this and help them sustain a healthy work-life balance. Just specify regular hours and don’t ask, or even don’t let them work outside of these work hours. Don’t treat work from home employees differently, they do the same job with in-office members, only from their homes.
Secure remote access with a VPN
One of the greatest risks of the remote work model is the challenge of protecting the corporate network while providing remote access. Work from home employees accesses corporate data from various places, unprotected Wi-Fi sources, and untrusted personal devices.
Well, using a VPN for remote access guarantees that your employees are properly verified, granted secure access, and protected against cyber threats while using corporate data. They encrypt all the communication between employees and the company network while also offering the latest verification technologies.
Since these services are hosted in the cloud, it doesn’t have any location limitations and is perfectly available to employees worldwide. You can have a private gateway with a VPN solution to ensure edge-to-edge security and impenetrable remote access procedure.
Use project management tools
If you work in an office, you probably already know who is doing what and when they will be finished. But that’s not the case with the remote work model. It’s much more challenging to keep up with the current tasks and the ones that are finished.
Cloud-based project management tools can help you track your team’s progress in an orderly fashion and without confusion. Set up daily, weekly, and monthly goals using one of the project management tools and have your team follow tasks on their own.
Create a digital office with the help of these tools and assign tasks to team members, set up deadlines, and be able to create a report on a weekly basis regarding what you’ve done.
Encourage the use of personal communication tools
If employees are only talking about work on your communication channels, for example, Slack, then they might lack the social benefits of a physical office. But online communication is becoming increasingly effective now, and you should also use it.
Start by opening up chit-chat channels on your Slack, encourage team members to post informal matters, and communicate with each other for something other than work. When team members become more socialized, use a break period application to help them talk in between break periods. Socialization via effective online means will ensure no one is feeling isolated.
Limit team meetings to provide alone work time
It is understandable that supervisors want to have a close look at their team members via meetings since they’re not able to physically see them. However, if team leaders set up meetings too frequently, then employees won’t have alone time to complete their tasks.
Schedule weekly all-hands meetings with team members but don’t surprise them with unplanned ones. Make sure employees have solid hours on their own so that they can work effectively.
When you have a planned and stable meeting schedule that doesn’t overwhelm employees, you’ll be pleased with the results. Proper alone time will help your team be more productive and focused.
Equip employees with devices
The remote work model increased the popularity of bring your own device (BYOD) principle where companies don’t provide any hardware to team members. However, if the employees’ devices are not adequate to complete tasks, you won’t get the best from your employees.
If you have the means and if some of your employees don’t have the right tool to do their jobs, make sure to equip them with the best devices you possibly can. These devices will be a great investment since you’ll get more productivity and better results from their work.
Work from home proves to be as effective as in-office work while also saving significant time and resources. Especially with the emergence of the pandemic, more and more companies adopt this work model to ensure safety, increase profit, and find talent around the world.
But unfortunately, the remote work model challenges companies in regards to security, communication, work hours, and much more. Businesses simply don’t have enough experience yet.
However, there are certain suggestions that can increase productivity, cybersecurity, and communication among employees. We suggest you adopt the solutions specified above to create a healthy, secure, and social work environment.