Rapidly advancing technology has not only made working outside the office possible, but the efficiency of it has made it a popular choice. No longer is it necessary to have your entire workforce in the office. But how do you properly manage a workforce that is scattered around the country (or several countries)? If employees are not properly looked after, they will lose motivation, feel cut off from the rest of the workforce and your whole business will suffer as a result. Here’s how to get it right when it comes to managing remote workers.
Assess their working environment
Regardless of the fact that an employee is working outside of the office, you still need to make sure that they are working in a suitable environment. Working somewhere they can focus and concentrate just as well as they would in the office is important. Make sure they are safe and comfortable and their productivity should be as high as it ever is.
Make sure they are insured
You need to ensure that your insurer has the details and address of where your employee works as they will not be covered by their home insurance.
You need to check the security of your employee’s home (or wherever their workplace happens to be), and make sure that it is safe. Security is the key.
Make sure they are well equipped
Giving your remote workers the required tools to get the job done is important because getting tools fixed when an employee is outside the office can be a logistical nightmare. It is best to set them up properly and in the right way from the off. It will save you and them a lot of hassle a couple of months down the line when dodgy setups start to go awry.
Schedule regular interaction time
Don’t assume that this will happen naturally when members of your team need information from each other, as it won’t materialise in the way you envisioned. Remote workers can easily fall off the radar if regular interaction with the rest of their team does not take place. Take the time to create a regular schedule of conference calls – anything from once a day to once a week should do the trick, depending on what works best for you. It is important that your workers do not feel excluded from activities.
As well as organising scheduled conference calls to keep your remote workers in the loop, you should aim to talk to them informally on a regular basis. Casual chat with your remote workers and checking how they are will reinforce your working relationship.
Give them the same opportunity for continued work training
Your remote workers are likely to be just as ambitious as your in-office workers, so remember to offer them all the same opportunities for work training that the rest of your team gets. This is part and parcel of keeping them in the loop, as well as keeping them well-trained and learning new tricks.
Invite them to the Christmas Party
May seem like a given, or a silly thing to mention, but it can easily slip your mind when you do not see them in the office every day and is almost impossible to recover from if you forget even once. So don’t do it!