Remote working’s become a necessity nowadays, but it’s one that comes with several benefits. Business owners needn’t worry about extra expenses related to hiring or buying premises, and workers benefit from time and cost savings associated with commuting daily.
A recent survey indicates that around 40% of existing jobs suit remote work. What goes into managing remote employees though?
Here’s the recipe for success.
Set Expectations at the Outset
Keeping productivity at its best is one of the major concerns for employers. After all, the average home’s filled with distractions, especially with home-schooling added to the fray.
Explain what you expect of your workers at the outset.
Do you want them to work for a specified number of hours per day, or are you mainly concerned with them completing a specified number of tasks? Flexible hours usually work best for remote employees, especially those with family commitments.
It’s also important to set cut-off times for answering calls and emails. Your employees must maintain some sort of work-life balance.
Provide the Tools They Need
Although you’ll save on some of the costs associated with office hire, you can’t expect your employees to pay for their own devices, data, and telephone expenses.
Device-as-a-service packages are often the best option for remote workers. DaaS helps your employees work as effectively at home as they did while in the office.
Managing Remote Employees Tasks
As a manager, it’s your job to ensure that workers meet deadlines and fulfill business expectations.
The best way to do this is by providing them with lists of daily and weekly tasks and checking on their progress regularly. This prevents procrastination and helps maintain productivity.
Maintain open lines of communication. Modern tools like video chat, e-mail, phone calls, texts, and an intranet channel help team members collaborate and stay in touch with the management team.
Many employees miss the camaraderie of the office. These feelings of isolation can degrade the sense of teamwork they once shared, and eat into employee efficiency.
You can maintain some of this team spirit by setting up a Slack channel for social chats, or a Facebook page where team members can stay in touch on an informal level.
As the person in charge, it’s a good idea to check in with your employees on an informal level too. Get in touch occasionally to ask them how they’re coping and if they need anything from you.
The last thing you want is for your employees to feel like you’re watching their every move. Remember, they might be at work, but they’re also at home, so you want to avoid invading their privacy.
It’s important to let go and trust your team to do their job. Micromanaging will cause mistrust and ultimately affect their productivity.
Keep Your Business Thriving in Difficult Times
Managing remote employees requires flexibility, collaboration, and compassion. Yet, it’s a system that can bring huge benefits when you get it right.
If you’d like more tips on how to make the most of your business no matter what, browse our job section for more useful information.