WFH: How to make the remote working model work

WFH: How to make the remote working model work

  • 23 Apr 2020

By Candice Clark, Managing Director, Dynamic Talent

As we’ve mentioned before, these changing times pose a challenge for leaders to keep their teams productive, their projects on track, and to create an organisation that is united and adaptable.

We at Dynamic Talent have been working remotely since we started out four years ago.

Here are some best practices for remote working that I can recommend from my own experience:

Time management & teamwork
  • Without the structure of their workplace environment, many of your employees are going to struggle with time management. Put structures and time parameters in place as you would in a physical environment, while being mindful of home-schooling and the many other challenges that your employees have to deal with during the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • If your teams are not used to remote working, daily stand-ups first thing each morning is going to prove invaluable. Zoom and Microsoft teams both have the correct functionality to facilitate this.
  • Make use of cloud-based collaboration services and time management apps to support your team in keeping on track. Here are some of the best time management apps and tools:
    https://www.lifehack.org/articles/technology/top-15-time-management-apps-and-tools.html

Reimagine connection & teambuilding
  • Connection and community is a basic human need.
  • You have the opportunity here to get creative and find new ways to meet this need. If you don’t, you run the risk of employees feeling isolated and becoming despondent. We’ve seen clients take their Friday socials online!
  • Ask your team to keep their videos on for team meetings and chats as eye contact is incredibly important for connection.
  • Encourage each employee to keep in contact with at least one other co-worker, or create structured WhatsApp or chat groups for each department to keep in contact. While these are predominantly work related, sharing light-hearted content goes a long way to building team morale and cultivating the office feeling that they are used to.

The importance of communication & meetings
  • Put more emphasis on using face time in real time, and less on communicating only via emails or text.
  • Weekly meetings might no longer be often enough. Consider having the quick stand-ups referred to earlier. Try ten-minute face-time meetings every morning with your team to get everyone on the same page and discuss the plan for the day.
  • Encourage your employees to proactively keep in contact with management and take ownership of getting their work done.
  • Emphasize an open door of communication by saying it is there, but also by actively showing it is.
  • Respond timeously to texts and calls, and check in regularly with staff.
  • Make sure your senior management team understands your remote working strategy and follows up with any employee not checking in regularly.

Connectivity & IT support
  • Put plans in place to ensure your team remains effortlessly connected at all times, without any hindrances or reservations.
  • Don’t assume that your whole team has unlimited data or Fibre internet, or expect employees to use their own airtime for work purposes.
  • Make sure everyone backs up their work every day (have your IT support set up an automated system if possible).
  • With more organizations working remotely, cybercrime has also risen. Check with your IT support company about precautionary measures and ensure your whole team’s devices are sufficiently protected.

Could remote working become more mainstream post Covid-19? We are hearing of many organisations having this conversation – from large enterprise businesses to smaller start-ups. Perfecting and mastering this model could place you light years ahead of your competitors and drastically reduce operating costs.

Need help from an experienced HR team supporting numerous clients to transition successfully? Pop us an email here.