10 Ways To Keep Your Remote Workforce Productive

During 2020, many businesses found themselves suddenly making the switch to remote working. With many companies retaining an entirely remote workforce, it’s more essential than ever before to keep your business streamlined and efficient. But at the same time, remote workers can feel isolated and therefore less productive. Keeping employees engaged is an essential part of having a thriving and profitable business. Here are 10 ways to keep your remote productive this year.

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#1 Make Sure Your Team Has Access To Secure And Up-To-Date Technology

The best way to streamline a remote workforce is to make sure they have access to top quality and secure technology. With managed IT services, you can outsource your technology to a qualified team of experts. Managed IT services cost less than an in-house IT team, but give you access to an entire department of qualified individuals. Managed IT services provide and maintain Cloud based systems, protect your security to prevent data breaches or downtime, and in some cases even help manage which software or hardware you purchase. When your whole team is remote working, a managed IT service is a great way to keep your software and hardware running efficiently.

#2 Keep Your Team Connected

With your whole team working remotely, it’s incredibly easy to find yourselves not talking to each other. Set up fortnightly team meetings and weekly 1-2-1s to keep in touch with your remote workforce. If possible, arrange for a monthly team get-together in an office or rented space. Statistics show that workers that spend at least 60% to 80% of their time remote working are the most productive, so try and set up some flexibility where possible to benefit from employee productivity. At least some hybrid working allows employees to have control over where they work.

#3  Trust Your Team

Trusting employees that work remotely is a big part of fostering a team culture. As long as they do their job, you don’t need to be micromanaging them every day to make sure they do it. It’s also important to keep communication open with your remote workforce. Take the time to praise people for tasks that they have completed to a high standard, and ensure you keep them updated on essential news as much as possible. Keep employees feeling like they’re important and kept in the loop.

#4 Set A Good Example For Work-Life Balance

If you’re prepared to show people that you value your own time, they’re more likely to trust you to value theirs. Respect their working boundaries and don’t schedule meetings after or before working hours. Make sure you are ‘seen’ taking lunch breaks and regular breaks throughout the day. Setting a good example for work schedules is going to help avoid employee burnout or pressure for your employees to overperform.

#5 Check In

It’s harder to see how your team is doing when they are remote working. Make sure you ask each individual how they are. Is their workload manageable? Are there any particular projects they want to work on? As well as work-related conversations, make the time to get to know their own interests and hobbies outside of a work environment.

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#6 Give Opportunities For Growth And Development

Remote workers might not have the same visibility as office workers for showcasing their skills. Ensure that your remote workforce has opportunities to grow and develop in their role, whether that’s through promotions or giving people the opportunities to work on new tasks or projects. Speaking to your employees about growth and development will keep them engaged and productive.

#7 Ensure New Hires Are Well Trained

You are only as strong as your weakest hire. With remote working being relatively new to businesses, there’s still a chance that new hires could miss out on the same level of training they’d receive in an office. Ensure that your new hires have proper training across their whole role. Pair them with someone of the same level as them that they can go to for advice about their job, and specific work tasks.

#8 Consider Project Management Software

If your team is entirely remote, then project management software could help make it clear which tasks are assigned to which individual. Project management tools like Asana are a great way to build up project plans, timelines and tasks. Clearly dividing up workflows and methods for handling each project can be made far more streamlined with project management software.

#9 Ask For Feedback

A big part of showing that you trust and care about your team is to ask for feedback. You can do this in a constructive way by incorporating this into your team 1-2-1s, or arranging a section at the end of a team meeting where you ask for feedback. The art of feedback is being clear what you are going to do with it. Are you going to take the feedback forward? If you don’t take their feedback forward, make sure you let the person who raised that point know why you aren’t taking it forward on this occasion. 

#10 Be Open To Flexible Schedules

The benefit of remote working for some individuals is the ability to better manage their work-life balance. Perhaps they have children they want to pick up from school, they like to start and finish early, or they want to attend a particular class on a Tuesday morning. While some businesses do have core hours, show flexibility by letting people work to a flexible schedule as much as possible

Is Your Remote Workforce Engaged?

When you implement some of the above points, you might find that some of your team aren’t happy with their current setup. If you find that some team members aren’t feeling particularly productive, try to approach this in a proactive way and see how best to engage them. Through keeping lines of communication open, showing trust, and asking for feedback, productivity can and will improve. Ensuring access to appropriate technology and resources will ensure that your team has the equipment they need to work effectively.

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About Dequiana Jackson

Dequiana Jackson, Founder of Inspired Marketing, Inc., helps overachieving women entrepreneurs conquer limiting beliefs and create marketing plans that grow their businesses. This includes one-on-one marketing plan development, digital product creation, web design and content marketing. Dequiana is the author of Know Your Business: How to Attract Ideal Clients & Sell More and runs the award-winning blog, Entrepreneur-Resources.net.

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