Nine out of 10 companies plan on adopting partial work from home in the coming years. These hybrid work models are in addition to the 18% of professional jobs that were fully remote by the end of 2021. By 2022, that number will increase to 25%. These numbers illustrate the necessity of reevaluating your workflows to ensure that your remote workers have the tools and models in place to help them be productive. This blog will give you some tips to maximize the efficiency of your remote workers in 2022—and beyond.
What Are the Challenges of Remote Work
Most employees will tell you they love either remote or hybrid work models. However, it does present some challenges that seeing each other face-to-face every day did not. For example:
- Having “crucial conversations” with an employee may not be in person but instead screen-to-screen.
- Communication may be stymied when employees don’t have the tools they need.
- Employees may feel disengaged or disconnected from the team.
- The response time may be slower.
- Issues with time management may arise when there are distractions at home.
All of these challenges, however, can be overcome with some adjustments to your management practices. Here’s what you can do to improve the efficiency of your team no matter where they are.
How to Improve Remote Worker Productivity
Start with communication. What tools are you using to provide immediate feedback or allow for on-the-spot conversations? Instant messaging tools like Slack allow the immediacy of side conversations that we used to have in the hallways at work. Too, using a project hub where all information is housed is a good way to keep everyone on the same page. A tool like Asana is great for organizing tasks and timelines, while Confluence is a great document repository, for example. Of course, video conferencing is the new normal. But just make sure you’re communicating with employees in their preferred channel.
Be smarter about your meetings. Even if the meeting is virtual, have an agenda. Shorter meetings make for happier employees, so make sure each group chat online is efficient and leaves each employee with a task, deadlines, and everything they need to make things happen when they’re working at home.
Also, build a culture of accountability with your remote employees in the same way you would with an on-site worker. Keep track of tasks and goals and make them visible and accessible to your team. This isn’t micromanagement, either. Instead, you or someone on the team should lead the project and herd the cats in one specific direction toward an attainable goal.
Build trust and accountability by giving your team continuous feedback. Managers should be conducting regular touch base calls with their workers to check in. Accountability for tasks should be tracked and followed up on. You can use time-tracking tools to make sure that people aren’t putting in too many hours at home, which can lead to burnout.
All of these steps can improve the productivity of your remote team. You can also add additional staff to help the entire team improve. That’s where Blackstone Talent Group can help. We offer our clients top IT and engineering talent from a ready pool of candidates standing by to meet you. Find out how we can help your team be more productive by helping you meet your hiring goals.