While some businesses are not finding success with remote jobs, others have figured out how to measure employee productivity and are pleased with their remote workers. What is the difference between business owners and managers who are seeing successful results?
Some find solutions simply by being more open-minded. For example, human resource departments are developing work from home jobs tailored for their employees; call center service representatives are able to take calls from their homes rather than at the office.
Other project managers are implementing successful policies and procedures, adjusted for at-home workers. For example, they are using various business communication tools for time tracking and the monitoring of home offices. Still more are finding it useful to hire local specialists like real estate agents.
How can you find the right solution with the changes going on in the United States? In this article, we will look at the various ways that you can monitor and solve any problems with at-home employees. By finding these solutions, you’ll be able to ensure employee’s productivity is maximized.
Business Changes from the 2020 COVID-19 Pandemic
Concerns about the Changes in 2020
Many business owners and managers worry about having their employees work from home. Instead of seeing opportunities for growth, they fear the changes that may be caused by the pandemic as impossible challenges that they don’t want to address.
In other words, rather than looking for ways to be successful given the economic challenges, some business owners and managers fear the worst. Their energy should be shifted to looking for work from home solutions. This would mean having a positive outlook on business rather than a negative one.
So, what are they worried about? Here are a few of the concerns that may be weighing on the minds of business owners and managers regarding employees working remotely:
- Social Isolation
- Employee Self-Discipline
- Business Communication Tools
- The Management of Remote Employees
- Time Management
- Effective Business Communication
These business owners and managers tend to think that if they cannot physically see their employees at work, employee productivity must be down. They couldn’t be more wrong. It’s understandable for them to have real concerns.
However, instead of looking at what could go wrong, they should be looking at how their business operates so they can make the necessary adjustments to continue operating successfully throughout this pandemic.
After all, those who are adapting to the changes during this recession are much closer to finding success than those who are not.
Embracing the Changes in 2020
Some business owners and managers have begun to embrace the concept of remote work with a new, improved mindset. They have even found ways to improve their employees’ productivity when working from home.
Some of the positive results that business owners and managers are seeing due to the changes in 2020 include the following:
- Decreased office space / Reduced rent expense
- Increased happiness of full-time, work-from-home employees
- Increased profit margins as they improve products and services
- Greater opportunities for growth
- Fewer overhead costs
So, how are business owners and managers finding success like this? They are finding work-from-home solutions! That’s right. Instead of fighting off problem after problem, they are forecasting future events and looking for solutions for foreseeable issues that may come up.
First of all, their open-mindedness is proving to be quite beneficial. For example, some business owners and managers have developed new ways to monitor workflow and track the value of team members’ outputs.
Second, they are developing new policies and procedures to support remote workers. For example, they are using business communication tools to connect with their employees who are working from home.
Finally, they are working with experts in specific fields as they move forward in this recession. For example, some owners are finding it useful to hire local salespeople who have an established client base and who can work productively from a remote location.
How Can You Find Success with Work from Home Employees?
- Implement the right business communication tools to help teams work better together.
As you find employees who have time spent at home to have difficulty communicating as a team, it’s important to use the right business communication tools. Using the right tools can solve many problems. There are many teams who have team members working from home. This can cause problems with the team’s productivity.
For example, your team may be struggling with communication and organization; you should be asking, “What technological tool could solve the problem?” There are actually many; the top-recommended tools for this problem include Slack, Asana, and Trello. These tools help employees communicate and organize their workflow.
Trello, for example, offers a comment and to-do list feature, which offers team members the ability to communicate with one another easily. Its main purpose is to help with the organization of the team’s workflow. The app offers cards for each project.
Project management is easy with Trello, as it lets you simply drag and drop cards to different sections of the app. Each team member can simply see the status of the project by looking at the cards on the app. It’s a user-friendly, easy solution for remote teams.
Work to increase employee job satisfaction with at-home workers by offering greater flexibility and trust.
It’s understandably difficult to extend trust to employees who work from home. Business owners and managers are uneasy, as they cannot monitor the activity of their employees or so they think.
There are plenty of business tools or policies that they can adopt that will help them monitor the productivity of at-home workers. Perhaps, they just aren’t looking in the right direction, or they are failing to adapt to the changing economic climate.
What is the solution? As mentioned in the last option, use the right business communication tools. Adopt new policies for communicating with team members.
For example, video conferencing has grown in popularity as people adapt to new communication methods. One solution would be to adopt a video policy for your company.
Offer physical, mental, and emotional support to those who are having trouble adjusting to working from home.
Many people are struggling to adjust to working from home. They cannot keep up with the rise of the use of technology; it just seems like gibberish to them. Now would be the time to provide workers like that with video tutorials or access to tutorials that show them how to use the technological tools properly.
Also, for those who are having difficulty adjusting mentally and emotionally, offer one-on-one video support from human resources or a counseling agency. Find out what difficulties they are having and try to address them each.
If you notice a trend with a particular problem, it may serve you well to meet with your management team to come up with creative solutions to fix it. Think outside of the box when trying to solve problems. Today, businesses have greater flexibility in what they can offer their employees.
Look for solutions to common problems with employees working from home.
What are the common problems with work-from-home employees? One issue that management might not think of is social isolation. Today, many people are going stir crazy, as they are stuck at home; some don’t even have a choice in the matter. For those who don’t have families, social isolation is wearing them down.
So, what can you do? Consider providing group video conferences, where the whole team is gathered together via video chat. Allow the team time to socialize.
In fact, some companies have pizza parties, allowing pizza to be delivered individually to the homes of the team members; then, the team eats together as if they were together in person.
For some employees, there are just too many distractions at home; they have their pets, kids, roommates, or partners readily available to distract them from their work. How can you best help these employees?
Offer support and information on how to best work from home. Help them create a home office, a place where they can work separately from their day-to-day distractions. Provide videos and tutorials on how to work productively and effectively at home.
You may be able to create solutions that your employees would never think of. You’ll never know how much help you can offer at-home workers until you begin. Again, working together with management to come up with solutions is your best bet. Often, group thinking offers greater ideas and solutions, so get to brainstorming.
Improve the quality of the communication you have with at-home workers.
Consider what business communication is like for employees who are working from home. If you have a concern with an at-home worker, it’s best to address it immediately. Offer more than just communication tools. Workers may need emotional support.
When you are on a video conference chat with an employee, ask how things are going with them and find out how they are adjusting to life at home. If you show genuine concern, the employee is more likely to open up and possibly reveal any at-home problems he or she is having. Then, you have the opportunity to fix whatever is going on.
Is your business suffering due to the recession? What solutions are you planning to get your business back on track? If you are currently stuck at home, consider saving money and coming up with business solutions to tide you over until things get back to normal or until you can better adjust to the changing economic climate.
Are you in need of marketing solutions for your business? Would you like some help with your ever-changing business needs? Please contact Angry Ape Creative to see how we can help!