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We are living in a time where the traditional working methods are consistently being challenged. For some people, they challenge this by changing the times that their working day begins and ends in their company. Others choose to adopt a four-day week policy, with paid long weekends. Companies are finally clicking that the way their staff work is going to define how well they do. It’s a simple solution: happy staff equals high levels of productivity which equals more profit. If all a company have to do is make their employees happy, you’d think that more people would be working on doing this. Barriers between managers and underlings (well, staff!) are being broken down and people are working better when they are treated like equals in the workplace. Trust is what makes companies successful, and one of the ways that many are requesting to work nowadays is from home. With the right amount of trust between manager and employee, there can be magic made.
People want freedom from the suit-wearing nine-to-five model of work and they’re getting it. As more companies realise that the attracting of top talent means relaxing with the working day, more is getting done and said talent is being retained. There are obvious advantages for the company, too, because you no longer have an office to pay for and very little in the way of overheads compared to needing to have an office for over twenty people working for you. Long commutes get ditched and this makes everyone happier, less stressed. Parents who are trying to find a balance between family time and work are more relaxed and taking less time off work, which then leads to higher productivity and more families staying together. Do you really need any more benefits listed for you? At this point, I hope not!
The bottom line is that allowing for remote work can be revolutionary for your business. Hopping on board with this idea is going to transform the way in which you do business. Remote working is more than just employee satisfaction, though. There has to be trust between employers and their staff and as with any model of working, remote work has its challenges. Here are some of them:
We have unrivalled access to technology now compared to thirty years ago, but when you’re having staff working from home, you need to be ensuring that your company software can manage the workload remotely from multiple computers in multiple locations. Agile testing metrics can help here, as you can catch bugs and issues with your software before your remote workers are affected. You also need to have security software of the best quality. Everything being remote makes the technical side of things harder, as people aren’t in house to see what the issues are. Internet outages and technology hiccups are common, but they are annoying! Always ensure your staff have a back-up laptop or plan to keep working, especially if there are deadlines to be met.
You may not have an office, but Skype training on the ways to communicate while working remotely is so important. Many companies have online platforms like Trello to work with so that project work and information can be shared. There are also community chats like Google Hangouts and work sharing programmes that can be used so that teams can stay teams – even when they’re not elbow to elbow. Remote work requires extra communication and you shouldn’t discount the need for a friendly emoji when things feel tense.
Lack Of Interaction
Being able to interpret how people will feel working remotely is difficult. Without the social camaraderie of the office, people can get pretty lonely! You can help your staff to nip cabin fever in the bud by making suggestions to work from cafes, the park – as long as they have an internet connection, they can work from anywhere. You could also put together socials for local staff so that they’re not alone. Weekly video meetings so you can use a voice and not type a message can also help.
Remote working is the future of most modern businesses now. It’s becoming more and more popular, and people are requesting the flexibility that remotely working can bring them. Do thorough research for your business before you agree to it, though, because you want to ensure that you’ve made the right choices for your staff, not the wrong ones. Do your homework and roll it out gently; you’ll see the positive difference it could make.