5 Strategies to Improve Productivity Among Your Remote Employees
At the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, all organizations, even those without a remote work culture, had to cope with the crisis by enforcing and effectively overseeing employees working from home.
That’s not all. CNBC reports that remote work is here to stay even as the world goes back to normal and global economies reopen.
Due to this shift in the work environment, businesses are constantly looking for means to enhance employee productivity as well as methods that would keep staff continuously engaged. Post COVID-19, the world and the future of employment will no longer be the same.
To aid you in this time of crisis, we’ve compiled 5 tips for working remotely:
Invest in technology
First up on our list of remote work productivity tips is acquiring state-of-the-art technology. To be able to smoothly work from home or elsewhere, your staff needs the latest tools for instant messaging — such as webcams — so that you don’t lose touch with each other outside the workplace.
You can acquire software that offers tools for time-tracking, scheduling, project management, file sharing, analysis, and effective collaboration, to name a few. Automation will also be your best friend, so for instance, if you’re working in the legal industry, it’s best to equip your law firm with a legal practice management platform or a cloud-based case management software.
Working at home can seem isolating and acquiring the right tools for employees working remotely can make all the difference and maintain a semblance of an office landscape, albeit online. This can help ensure that your staff stays productive.
Make sure that employees working remotely know what you expect from them when it comes to performance and delivery. Setting expectations is one of the keys to working remotely. Create arrangements and agreements with staff. For example, you can contact them with a phone call at the beginning of the day. You can set midweek meetings, and you can stay updated with reports every Friday. Set deadlines and make sure they follow them. If they fail to deliver on time, make sure to ask them why and address the performance problem right away.
Transparency is also a must. You should be able to clearly explain how company policies are modified for remote work. Managers need to tell team members if the shift from workplace to home will affect their workload or change day-to-day working hours. You also need to inform employees working remotely if they will be left vulnerable during this transition.
You should also consider their new workplace conditions. For instance, some staff working from home need to handle their children who are in the house due to school and activity closures. They probably require additional flexibility and assistance.
Setting expectations and providing clarifications to these potential predicaments relieves your organization from potential stress that may arise. It will also enable your team members to keep generating quality output despite the constraints.
Dedicate time for further education
One of our remote work productivity tips spans the concept of ongoing learning. Working outside the office is a skill that demands practice and persistent education. You should continue to equip your employees with training materials and additional resources that will help them be effective throughout the course of remote work.
Books, articles, videos, podcasts, as well as tutorials and courses are readily available online and are inexpensive means to learn about the latest trends, research, and practices for staying productive while working remotely.
You can also continue your in-house training and mentorship modules online. If that’s not an option, encourage your staff to grasp self-learning by participating in their own e-learning courses or by looking for materials and opportunities for productivity and career enhancement.
Besides this, learning something new is a good way to stay motivated. It can help retain your focus and drive you to keep working hard, especially since a manager is not around in your new workplace. It reignites excitement, puts you back on your path, and pushes you forward.
Collaboration is key
When you’re working from home, things can feel isolating. Buffer claims that loneliness and communication are two of the largest hurdles for employees working remotely. Collaboration also poses a huge challenge.
One of the best tips for working remotely is allotting and prioritizing time for your team. Focus on time spent accomplishing tasks together with your colleagues rather than delegating solitary work.
Although collaboration becomes understandably more complex minus the physical interaction, there’s plenty of infrastructure available that can connect you and your colleagues together. Talk on video when possible, build virtual social spaces, and utilize a single project management and collaboration software to make sure everyone’s on the same page.
Determine your staff’s feelings
Know that your team members will not all share the same opinions towards working from home, and that’s all right. Employees working remotely will develop different feelings towards telecommuting. To avoid negative feelings towards the new working lifestyle, employers need to openly communicate with their staff. Make sure you have clear communication lines for your workers.
Some good tips for working remotely include considering your team members’ mental and physical health, encouraging them to participate in physical activities like walks, runs and workouts, and promoting interventions like disconnecting from social media for an hour to maintain focus.
Managing uncertainty with GrowPath
Remaining productive while working from home is a challenge, but if you use these remote work productivity tips, you can help your team members to remain motivated. You can also breathe easy knowing that your staff can complete their work and deliver high quality output on time even when you’re not working in the office. In the end, it all boils down to trusting your employees and encouraging them to be truthful about their current situation, their workload, and their opinions on the future of the workspace.
No matter the circumstances, GrowPath is a secure software-as-a-service product that offers lawyers and legal professionals a better way to manage their cases, from client intake through case closure and profitability analytics. If you’d like to see GrowPath in action, schedule a demonstration today.
Carl Heimel, Vice President of Sales for GrowPath, leads sales operations for GrowPath’s platform for high-performing law firms. Carl joined GrowPath in 2018, bringing a 25-year track record of success as both a sales leader and individual contributor.