Answer Three Questions to Maintain an Effective Remote Work Strategy

The way we work will never be the same. Here’s what you need to consider as you map out the future of work.

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As economies are reopening, companies everywhere are re-evaluating their work-in-office policies. Businesses of all kinds had mixed reactions to the stay-at-home economy, with some finding new levels of efficiency and others longing to get back into the office. One way or another, the experience underscores the need for every company to have a remote work option or policy in place.

Whether remote work was baked into your culture or it was a new experience, companies  needed to build a remote work strategy to maintain not only efficiency, but also sanity. To maintain the effectiveness of your strategy for remote work, here are three questions you need to answer:

What tools are you using to communicate?

No matter what business you’re in, communication is key. Phone calls, video meetings, email, text, drone drops — you name it — the modern combinations of how to remain in contact and disseminate information in a timely manner are seemingly endless. Sure, it’s not the same as sitting around a conference table, but really, aren’t the best ideas hatched at the most random times?

There are plenty of communications and collaboration tools to keep your team connected, which is why it’s important to standardize by choosing the tools that will make up your official tech stack. You’ll want to find communication and video conferencing tools that fit your budget, grow with you, solve multiple problems, and are easy to implement and use.

How are you handling project management?

Efficiency is always a concern when it comes to remote work: With the creature comforts of home beckoning, managers often wonder whether or not projects will get completed on time. But those worries are very likely unfounded. Recent studies show that working from home benefits employees in several ways: Not only does it eliminate the daily commute and increase productivity, but it can also lead to healthier employee lifestyles.

In any case, you should stick to what was working for your business prior to COVID-19; just adding the benefits of today’s videoconferencing and collaboration technologies. But you might consider adding a project management tool or even hiring a project manager to build schedules, automate where possible, and ensure efficiency.

How do you keep everyone engaged and happy?  

Working from home has plenty of upside, but a valid concern has been that boundaries have become  blurred, which sometimes play havoc with workers’ mental wellness. So how do you help employees maintain a healthy outlook? It’s all about personal connections. Be sure to keep the lines of communication open and don’t skip the watercooler talk. If your team isn’t following a traditional 9-to-5 workday, you can use things like Slack or videoconferencing to your team’s advantage. Schedule one-on-one virtual check-ins with each team member and consider a regular virtual lunch with your team. These practices help everyone feel connected and keep feelings of isolation at bay.

A few simple connection points will show everyone that you value socialization, human interaction, and mental wellness. And when you find things that work, be sure to add them to your process.

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