Are Your Workers Working Remotely? Make It Work

The benefits and joys of working remotely have been lauded for years: skipping the traffic jams, enhanced work-life balance, 6 a.m. meetings in slippers.

Flexibility in the workplace is critical to today’s workforce. Still, some companies try to enforce yesterday’s office space on today’s work anywhere space. Just take a look at the backlash that both Yahoo and Reddit encountered for their work-at-office policy.

 

Are Your Workers Working Remotely? Make It Work

 

The concern shouldn’t be whether people work outside the office. There’s no shortage of people who have the drive, the ambition, and the work ethic. But to enable effective telecommuting, you need to give them the technology to succeed:

Online Meeting Spaces

Have regular face-to-face meetings with your remote workers. Rather than sticking to the static photo avatar, turn the call into a video chat. Remote employees have the opportunity to see how their coworkers interact and vice versa. Plus, a video call puts the multi-tasking at bay, thereby keeping the attention on building relationships.

With a little research, you can find good, free options out there. Or consider Skype for Business, which is built right into Microsoft Office.

Collaboration Tools

Connecting people on the other end of the computer to the rest of the room is one thing. But how about giving them the opportunity to interact with what’s happening in the room? They contribute their thoughts and their ideas in real-time, no matter if they’re on a desktop, tablet, or laptop, no matter what operating system they’re on. Or what time zone they are in. Online meetings are great for sharing content, but for true interaction and co-creation, there are new technologies out there that are worth looking into.

An interactive flat panel like SMART kapp iQ allows you to share what’s on that display to dozens or hundreds of people. Even if they’re sitting in a coffee shop or are clear across the room, they can make notes on their device that show up on the display – for everyone to see. It’s like having the entire team in the same room, connected and contributing ways that they never thought possible.

Check the Bandwidth

Finally, check in with your remote workers and ensure they have what they need for smooth sailing. How’s the access to VPN? Is it time to find business apps that are easily accessed with laptops of mobile devices? How’s the bandwidth? And beyond that, how’s their bandwidth? As so many remote workers have a tendency to stay plugged in, encourage them to get up, go for a walk, clear their heads, and recharge.

Your organization is full of passionate, engaged employees. So make sure those who are working remotely have the flexibility they need to do the best job they can do for their team and their organizations.

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