How to keep employees productive whilst working from home
Facing the challenges of the global pandemic has meant that many office-based workers are now dispersed. Working virtually from their sofas and kitchen tables. We share how to keep employees productive whilst working from home.
However, the lack of face-to-face contact, the potential distractions, and the overall disruption that comes with remote working can make it difficult to maintain high standards. To overcome these challenges, employers should take advantage of new technologies and approaches that can help them to communicate and connect just as effectively as before.
Connecting with your team
One of the popular ways that not only businesses, but friends and families too, have managed to connect is through video conferencing. Tools like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Hangouts are great ways to keep in touch with colleagues and clients. Many of these platforms offer free memberships and can be synced with your online calendars. They can be a great replacement for your standard office meetings. They can often be a more personable way to reach out than say a traditional phone call.
One of the fiercest barriers to successful homeworking comes in the form of shared information. Finding a way to distribute access to key files and documents in a secure way can be a headache for businesses.
Data is an important asset for businesses, and unfortunately for hackers too. It’s crucial to arm your business with protection against cyber threats and backups in the event of a breach. Having your data stored on a remote server by your IT company safeguards against this event. It also allows your team shared access to carry out their work.
Another way to provide an additional level of security is to ask employers to make use of VPN connections. VPN’s hide a user’s IP address, encrypt data whilst it moves, and mask a user’s location.
Many offices have stringent policies in regards to internet security, however, whilst working from home standards may dip. It is important to brief employees and commit them to regular password updates and software updates. Also reiterate the dangers of malware, phishing and other cybersecurity risks.
For many teams, the early hours of the morning are when we establish key priorities for the day, and catch up on any concerns. With a lack of external stimulation though, the days can begin to blur into one. Therefore, it’s essential to find a way to maintain this routine and give your employees a chance to vent. Instant messaging apps are a fast and simple way to have informal conversations with your employees and continue this tradition.
Setting up for success
We know how important it is for our office workspaces to be clean, tidy, and productive. Encouraging your employees to maintain a separate workspace in a spare room, attic or garage can be a good way to keep them focused. Another trick is to incorporate house plants into your home-office setting – a well-known way to reduce stress and anxiety. For your employees to do their best work, they need to have the proper tools available to them, that they might be missing whilst working from home. Some companies actually choose to offset the costs involved for employees in establishing safe and stable internet connections, laptops, printers, and other related equipment.
Supporting Employee Well-Being
Whilst it is critical to stay on top of productivity, there are balances to be struck. Coping with blurred work-life boundaries, childcare needs, and simply living through such a volatile period of human history can weigh heavily without the right support. Maintaining open-lines with employees, encouraging them to stick to regular office hours, and being sensitive to their unique situations can be especially useful in times like these.
Here at ECL we provide businesses with unrivalled support and assistance to help them maintain a secure and productive work environment for their employees. To find out more please call us today on 01268 575300 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
ECL recognises that every client is different, and every client has a different IT support requirement. Whatever the size of your business, we can offer a support scenario to suit your needs.
Whether your business already uses Cloud services or you’re considering the Cloud as a possible way forward, talk to us first. We can provide anything from fully hosted IT infrastructures on our own ECL Private Cloud, to simple on-line backups. We can also give expert advice on Office 365 and other Cloud platforms.
How would losing access to your IT systems and data for days, or even weeks, affect your business? For many if not most companies this would be a nightmare scenario, with potentially very serious consequences.