Managing Remote Workers

The ability to work from home is a growing trend around the world. Many organizations offer it as a perk while others rely on employees who never step foot in the home office. According to CNBC, 70% of workers work remotely at least once a week. With this shift to a more flexible work/life balance come new challenges and considerations for your management team. 

Adopting a work from home or remote working policy can represent a huge shift in your company’s culture. Fortunately, it’s not as scary as it might seem. At the end of the day, you need to treat remote workers exactly like you would if they were at the desk next to you. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you integrate working from home into your office culture. 

Trust Remote Employees

Whether you’re hiring a new remote employee or allowing existing team members to work from home, trust has to be the foundation of this decision. It’s easy in this situation to worry about whether or not work will actually get done, but you need to have faith in your team. Do you spend all day hovering at their desk, constantly checking what’s on their computer screen? Hopefully not. 

Have faith in your hiring processes and your own judgement and that you’ve assembled the right people for the right job. This isn’t to say you’re not entitled to check in or ask for status updates, but resist the urge to weaponize someone’s remote status against them. A good way to balance this is by setting up specific guidelines. Daily check-ins, required email responses and time logging are all great ways to keep everyone accountable. 

Constant Communication and Inclusion

As mentioned above, staying in constant communication is critical to managing a remote workforce. Again, you don’t want to micromanage, but constant communication isn’t just about checking in on a project’s status or trying to catch someone away from their computer. Regular communication with remote workers helps them feel like part of the team, just like their local counterparts. You expect them to reply to emails, phone calls and messages in a timely manner, so make sure you do the same. You need to be accessible to your entire team. 

Remember, just because someone’s working from home doesn’t mean their a necessarily a secondary member of your team. Sure, they may not be able to join you for the weekly happy hour, but you can still socialize with remote workers. Build in a little time for “team building” during weekly check-ins. Get to know remote employees in the same way you’d do so with your local employees. This will not only help your management team stay in better contact with your remote employees, but help these workers feel more invested in your company culture.

Measure Success in Goals

Nobody likes to be micromanaged and you’re probably going to drive yourself crazy checking in on remote workers all day long. One of the reasons that working from home is so popular is because it allows your employees more flexibility in their day. They can pick up their kids or do a load of laundry or schedule doctor’s appointments all while working. If you start to focus on the minutiae of employees’ hourly activity, you’re eliminating the benefits of working from home. 

The upshot is that if you can avoid this buy and the employee establishing goals and deliverables. Are your remote employees finishing the work they need to? Are your weekly, monthly, quarterly goals being met? You can still track employee time or ask for status updates, but keep things in perspective and trust your employees (see our first section). 

Hire the Right Person for the Job with isolved

Whether you’re looking for remote or local workers, finding the best candidate requires a lot of attention to detail.With CTR and the isolved applicant tracking software, all the hard work is done for you. With an easy-to-use interface and plenty of great features, you’ll find that new hire in a jiffy.

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