The modern workplace isn’t just employees stuck behind their desks anymore. Increasingly, businesses hire workers who telecommute from cities beyond company headquarters.
In addition, it is predicted that by 2020, 30% of the workforce will either be freelance, outsourced, or off-premises. With this rising trend, business owners are learning how to manage remote employees virtually, providing them with the same support and direction given to in-house staff.
Here are five key ways employers can keep in touch with remote employees and keep them productive, engaged, and effective:
Set clear expectations
Employee productivity comes largely from a clear understanding of expectations. As such, you must provide clearly written rules and goals, as well as conduct one-on-one meetings on a regular basis. This will let your workers know that they’re a critical part of the team and ensure that they stay aligned and accountable as projects and goals change.
Provide collaboration tools
Use a centralized project management tool like Asana or Trello to streamline tasks and assignments. These cloud-based tools will also enable you to set deadlines, reminders, and track progress.
Collaboration apps also create and support a culture of accountability by providing a cross-team view of how staff members are meeting individual goals and contributing to shared ones. This low-level tacit peer pressure will encourage them to stay motivated.
Keep things predictable
Allowing flexibility has its advantages, such as greater talent diversity and resource efficiency. However, it may also lead to sloppy communication. To prevent this, adopt an articulated cadence of targets and deadlines that your employees can work toward independently.
Choose a trusted work management platform that lets you set up automated update requests in order to allow your remote workers to “report in.” This lets them send updates through project sheets and avoid productivity-killing chats and threads.
Document regular processes
When dealing with remote workers, it’s necessary that your business processes are well-defined and documented. This will help you track how well they’re followed. Update your company policies to provide guidance along the way.
Share documents via secure web applications
Avoid sending documents back and forth by sharing documents in the cloud instead. It’s safer and more convenient, and you can even receive and send feedback in real time.
Remote workers are often left out of the loop because they’re not physically present to catch on-the-fly updates. You can close that gap by using productivity apps that have built-in communication tools.
Charles IT offers a full suite of solutions that can help improve your work management platform and automate updated requests. Your employees can also see progress in real-time team portals, making communication instant and smarter. Call us today to learn more.