The Covid-19 pandemic caused a huge change in the global job market in 2020. Although before the pandemic working from home used to be a privilege offered by some businesses, it has now become the standard for most of them.
The fact is that remote workers have had a poor image in the past. Many employers feared that their employees would be too easily distracted at home, because they couldn’t monitor their direct reports.
However, teleconferencing and telework technology has progressed to the extent that several companies can now operate with entirely remote teams.
Remote work can also help prevent the spread of disease, saving businesses time and money while also protecting the public’s health, which is the best way to operate for many companies, especially in these difficult times.
Is remote working effective?
Based on several studies conducted over time, the conclusion is that remote workers are actually more productive than their office-based counterparts. But even if this is the case, remote workers also reported higher levels of stress and more difficulty finding work-life balance. However, when implemented correctly, remote work can definitely improve employee satisfaction.
How to maximize efficiency and productivity of remote work
Good communication is essential
Working from home requires effective communication. In fact, the most significant barrier to developing trust with remote teams is communication. Make sure you communicate effectively and frequently and use the right communication tools.
Technology is rapidly changing, and there is plenty of software that can help you communicate effectively. You’ll have to figure out which technologies are most useful in which situations and become familiar with them. Here are some tools that are recommended for remote work: Slack, Skype, Google Meet, Zoom, GoToMeeting.
If the team is entirely remote, team members may begin to lose touch with the rest of the group, as well as their sense of purpose. Maintain and develop the bond by providing a clear daily structure for all team members. It’s critical to maintain regular contact with your team members and to make sure you’re personally connected to them.
If you already have a great feedback system in place, make sure it works online as well. Giving and receiving feedback is even more important when working remotely because there is a greater risk of misunderstandings, implicit assumptions, and conflict. Try 1-on-1 meetings if you don’t already have a feedback structure in place. Do this regularly and encourage your team to provide feedback to one another.
Keep in mind that constructive criticism is always beneficial because it provides an opportunity to improve.
Employees should be given the necessary tools.
Ensure that workers have the equipment they need to succeed, which could include more than just a phone and a laptop. Do your staff, for example, have enough cameras to attend virtual meetings?
Even if you don’t have a lot of technology and collaboration resources, you can equip your workers to work efficiently from home.
Focus on results rather than processes.
In the remote landscape, where many people juggle work and family obligations from the comfort of their own homes, allow workers to complete their work most conveniently and profitably for them
It’s possible that your 10 a.m. team meeting will have to be canceled, or that you’ll have to skip a lengthy approval process. Use interactive resources wherever possible and schedule meetings at a mutually convenient time. Allowing teams to be flexible allows them to complete their tasks in their unique way.
Focus on cybersecurity
In 2021, as more companies allow a significant proportion of their employees to operate remotely, cybersecurity will become much more of a concern. Cybersecurity is as critical as it was before the pandemic, if not even more. A major source of concern is how data is accessed and how to efficiently protect it.
Although several companies have made substantial new investments in their IT systems and infrastructure as a result of the transition to remote work, the security burden generated in the process has not been addressed in many cases. So make sure you focus on cybersecurity. You can read more about the importance of cybersecurity in our article: Cybersecurity in 2021 – What You Need to Know
Is remote work the future of work?
Working remotely has become a common practice in many workplaces, both in the United States and around the world, as a result of advancements in communication technology and network connectivity.
The Covid-19 pandemic has shown that we can work from home and do it efficiently—without losing productivity.
The majority of companies noticed that productivity was the same or even higher than before the pandemic, even with their employees working remotely.
The future of remote work will demand many changes, including investing in digital infrastructure and freeing office space. For most businesses, having employees working remotely will require the transformation of many processes and policies.
Remote work – especially in IT/tech companies – is on the rise, and it shows no signs of slowing down. Instead, it is gaining traction. Considering the advantages it has to a business’s bottom line, this should come as no wonder given the technological improvements and innovative startups that have made hiring and employing remote IT/Tech professionals more efficient and successful than ever. What’s clear is that remote work will become the new normal a long time from now on.
Read more: Top Reasons why Remote Work is Here to Stay