When the COVID-19 outbreak first happened, organizations had to respond quickly and move their organizations to remote work setups with no time to plan.
With COVID-19 still very much a health and safety threat, many companies have made the decision to remain remote long-term. Some major companies like Twitter have even announced the intention to stay remote permanently, which a lot of smaller companies followed.
Even organizations who do plan to eventually return to the office are taking it slow. A common move for businesses in the United States is to remain remote through the end of 2020, which is still months away.
Here are some strategies to help organizations that plan to stay remote as a long-term plan:
1. Invest in the right video conferencing platform equipment for your team
This should be top priority once the decision has been made to remain remote for a long period of time. The right equipment makes all the difference between your teams operating as usual, and technical difficulties stifling productivity.
You’ll want to make sure your whole organization uses a video conferencing solution that makes sense for your individual business goals — will you be giving a lot of presentations to clients? Will you be hosting webinars and live events? Your answers will greatly influence the solution you choose.
Regardless of the software you choose, having the right equipment will always be important. Making sure your team can video chat without lags or disruptions in audio or video quality will keep meetings productive and presentations smooth.
2. Maintain “face to face” interaction and “social” connections
While we may all be a little tired of Zoom happy hours, the concept of maintaining face to face interaction and engaging in non-work talk increases in importance the longer your team works remotely.
Whenever possible, choose video conferencing over phone calls for things like sync-ups, project planning meetings, and touch-base meetings. In addition, make it a point to add some one-on-one video chats, virtual lunches, and other activities that closely resemble the interactions you had with your team when working in the office.
3. Be flexible with schedules and respect boundaries
The circumstances surrounding this remote work situation are much more complicated than just a desire to not have a physical office. The pandemic has ransacked just about every aspect of people’s lives, including things outside of work.
Most of your team members have significant responsibilities outside their job, such as caring for children or family members. Some may even be facing financial stress due to a family member being furloughed or ill. It’s important to be flexible with your team’s work schedule and show leniency as they navigate things like the new school year.
At the same time, it’s even more important to respect boundaries now that remote work is a long-term plan. When working from home, it’s hard to keep work and life separate since it’s hard to switch mental gears when you physically stay in the same place. Work with your team to establish healthy boundaries of when they’re expected to answer messages/emails, and when they should focus on things other than work.
The key to long-term remote work success will be implementing the tools your organization needs to stay connected and productive, no matter where they are. Contact us today to set up a consultation with the experts at IVCi, who can help you find the right technology suite for your needs and business goals.