Over the last month, more and more organizations have been asking their employees to work remotely due to the rapid spread of COVID-19. While employees have the leisure of not having to dress up or commute daily, they are still expected to be just as productive and efficient in their tasks. For some, it might sound like a relief, but it’s definitely a challenge for those who need to simultaneously look after their families at home and work at the same time.
Every job is different depending on the tasks, responsibilities, and internal policies which can be difficult to navigate when you’re working outside a professional setting. But there are some strategies to help your employees be more productive while working remotely. With the abundant technological advancements, there has been a surge in employees who telecommute on a regular basis, so there are many full-time workers who have been successfully working from their homes. To get you started, here are five ways for your employees to be productive when working remotely.
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Follow a Routine
Whether you’re working remotely from home or in the office, it’s ideal to follow a routine to keep you organized. This means waking up at an appropriate hour in the morning, having a healthy breakfast, and getting dressed in fresh clothes to get into the working mindset. Having this sort of discipline helps you stay focused on your responsibilities and effectively execute them.
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Additionally, for those who typically work nine-to-five hours can follow the same arrangement at home so it keeps them on track. This helps to maintain a work-life balance and leaves sufficient time for you to do other household chores without experiencing burnouts.
Designate An Area That Is Exclusive For Work
Just because you don’t have to go to the office anymore doesn’t mean you start working anywhere in the house where you can easily get distracted or interrupted. If you wish to successfully complete tasks and stay efficient, then it’s necessary to set up a home-based work station.
You don’t have to purchase a separate desk, but if that’s your style then go for it. The idea is to create a workspace that motivates and inspires you to perform your best and enables you to give your undivided attention to the tasks assigned. Ultimately, you have to instruct your family not to encroach on your privacy during work hours as this will be your regular routine.
Stay Connected With Your Team
Communication is a key factor whether you’re working remotely or on-site. This is essential for those working in a team or collaborating on a project together, so each member is informed of their duties and can provide updates on their progress.
By staying connected and checking on others regularly, you’re aware of everyone’s assigned tasks and can track the performance of members accordingly. This also helps when a worker is unavailable or has an emergency so another team member can cover for them, which doesn’t impact the workflow.
Platforms like Slack, Discord, Hangouts, Microsoft Teams, etc. can help employees stay connected with each other and communicate clearly on important business matters. This helps teams stay on top of their game while ensuring effective collaboration and unity in delivering results.
Take Short Breaks In Between
It’s very easy to go into overdrive when working and lose track of time. However, sitting all day in front of your laptop or computer screen isn’t healthy at all. While it’s important to stay focused and driven so you’re on schedule and completing tasks efficiently, it shouldn’t come at the cost of your well-being either. Working from home means you have lesser reasons to leave the comfort of your chair or to get out of your home-based office, even just to get a glass of water.
Taking short breaks to rest your eyes and stretch your legs can prevent you from getting lethargic and keep you active while working.
With a worldwide health crisis going on, it’s advised to stay indoors, but that doesn’t mean you can’t squeeze in some physical exercise while staying inside the house. There are a variety of fitness apps online that allow free streaming of exercise classes that anyone can join.
Take a 10 min break to just walk around the house to get your blood circulating or grab a snack to give yourself an energy boost. It’s important to follow some sort of regimen while working from home so you stay focused and productive.
Avoid Non-Work Engagements During Work Hours
It’s important to set boundaries with your family members and friends while working from home. No doubt, working with kids running around the house or in the presence of other family members is a tough task. But, you can’t have your work and personal life clashing at odd hours and disrupting your work environment.
Therefore, sit down with your kids and inform them about your work schedule so they don’t interrupt you while you’re working. You can assign an activity to them during your work hours or put them to bed so they’re napping while you’re working.
This applies to friends as well; don’t attend any calls or messages from friends during office hours as it reflects badly on your professionalism and slows down your productivity. Leave your phone on ‘do not disturb’ so you can reply to those messages once you’re on a break or free.
Similarly, don’t interrupt your workflow to do housework like washing the dishes, doing laundry, or vacuuming the house. If you live in London and are desperate to have your carpets and rugs deep-cleaned, then running a quick search for “Carpet cleaning Epsom” will prompt you to the best companies near your block. When you’re on a roll you’ll be more inclined to stay working and not ruin your work streak.
In a Nutshell
Working from home gives people an added flexibility that they might not get to enjoy in their offices, especially with regards to the work hours. Employers are a lot more lenient, given the circumstances, so workers can schedule their work hours according to their circumstances. While managing your home, kids, and work together is no walk in the park, following these tips can help you stay efficient and productive during the prevailing times. Good luck and stay safe!