5 Ways to Stay Connected to a Remote Workforce
In light of current events more and more workplaces have required to switch to remote working. This nationwide change can be daunting for both the employer and employees.
One of the biggest factors for successful remote working is staying connected to your employees and for your employees to be able to stay connected to their employer.
Here at Let’s Connect, we’ve put together some of the key ways to stay connected to your workforce:
1. Less internal emails and more FaceTime
In the current digital age so much of the daily communication you have within work is non-verbal and is predominantly via email. This can be both internal and external.
Not only can this be time consuming and a less effective way of communicating but can also cause loneliness due to lack of interaction when working from home. The simple solution to this is using video apps to have regular ‘face-to-face’ conversations with your team.
Some devices that have good video calling capabilities are the iPhone 11 smartphones, MacBook range and iMac, all using Apple’s FaceTime app. For android devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S20 and the Microsoft Surface Book 2, Google Duo is available, allowing you to video call up to eight people at one time.
This can be used for short one-to-one interactions and updates between employees and can also be an entire team meeting for everyone to stay up to date. This has a huge impact on team morale and motivation as it pulls together a team and creates a sense of community.
2. Trust your employees and be flexible
Working from home during this uncertain time can bring a whole host of additional challenges and changes to people’s lives. For example, parents required to home-school and keep their children active at home, additional care for elderly family members, taking care of pets etc. Managing these new responsibilities and remaining working within the normal nine to five structure can be difficult.
As an employer the best thing you can do is trust your employees and have a chat with them to provide support for the additional responsibilities they may have. Also, focus on connectivity and ensure the basics of communication are covered, updating the team on any projects and making sure they’re present to any team meetings. Having message notifications on in applications such as Outlook is useful and devices such as Apple Watch or the latest smartphones are great for synchronising with these.
This will help your employees manage their time effectively and stay motivated in completing their work tasks to a high standard.
3. Regular feedback from your team
Identifying any issues or problems within a team can be difficult when the workforce is working remotely. You may miss certain issues that you would normally identify and resolve quickly within an office or workplace.
To avoid any problems snowballing during remote working it’s essential that you gain regular feedback from all employees.
Make a company wide announcement and set aside some time each week for employees to provide any positive and negative feedback they may have. This will positively impact the company as it will identify what is working well and what can be improved as the business adjusts to a new working structure.
4. Enhance team building
Keeping the company culture and community atmosphere is vital when your workforce is working remotely. An informal group chat is a good way to start, where employees can have light conversations that they may typically have day-to-day within the normal work environment.
In light of current events it may also be beneficial to take it to the next level.
Here are ideas to enhance remote team building:
– Film/Book Clubs via video chat
– Online office games
– Online team bingo
– Synchronised coffee and tea breaks over video calls
– 5 minute quizzes or daily challenges.
Recognition of key achievements can also take a hit during remote working, it is important to recognise your team and shout about small or large wins, this will enhance team building and morale.
5. Set project targets and deadlines
Working from home can actually increase focus and productivity, with the potential for less distractions or getting side-tracked on different tasks in the workplace. However, some employers may worry that other home tasks or responsibilities may get in the way of important projects or deadlines.
Many companies are imposing flexibility from the normal working hours when working from home, due to a variety of additional responsibilities due to COVID-19. By setting targets and deadlines on key projects, it provides structure and enhances productivity to ensure necessary tasks are completed.
Working remotely can be both beneficial and challenging but by implementing some of the above concepts and the right approach, companies can stay confidently connected to their employees.
If you’d like to discover how to keep your employees happy, motivated and productive, get in touch with one of our team today on 0330 1624 204 or fill in our enquiry form.