With recent global developments has come a considerable shift in work culture, with many companies having to adapt to new ways of working to ensure the wellbeing of their teams. While working from home is a new concept for many companies it has proven to be an effective strategy for those able to do so, allowing them to continue operations and minimise financial risk as much as possible. Of course, if home working isn’t a regular requirement for your teams it can pose an additional set of challenges that must be considered.
Time management is one of the biggest concerns that employers have when looking into home working; while a home working environment sounds ideal on paper, it can sometimes have a negative impact on productivity. This can lead to increased anxiety if team members feel their workload stacking up against them which amplifies the effects even more. Demotivation and stress can build, leading to an unhappy workforce and reduced output.
One of the most effective ways to combat the demotivational aspects of working from home is to prepare your teams in advance and foster a culture around proper time management. Teams that have excellent time management skills when working in an office environment aren’t immune to issues when it comes to working from home so instilling good practices will help to set them up for success.
Establish internal communication channels
Learning to communicate effectively using remote tools like Microsoft Teams, Zoom and Skype allows teams to stay fully in the loop even when they can’t meet and collaborate face to face. Make sure everyone knows which channels to use to keep in contact, and that they are comfortable using them. Holding regular remote meetings where work and personal news is on the agenda can boost morale and keep everyone on track.
Set goals for teams working remotely
Working remotely can leave people feeling rudderless and it’s sometimes all too tempting to give into the urge to procrastinate. By setting clear, individualised and achievable goals and allowing for some flexibility you can ease the pressure and reduce stress levels. Reviewing goals and deadlines regularly also goes a long way to helping assign priority levels to tasks so your employees can start their day with a clear vision in mind and a manageable workload.
Encourage regular breaks from work
Studies have shown that concentration peaks and begins to dip after about an hour of focusing on a task. Encouraging people to take regular, short breaks away from their workspace gives them the chance to stretch their legs, take a moment away from their screens, and refocus their energy. It’s also important to stay hydrated and make time to eat during the day to avoid an afternoon slump.
Give everyone access to the right tools and training
Technology is more portable than ever before, making it much easier to transition between a home and office working environment; to make sure your teams are confident using any tech you have provided you may also want to invest in training. Depending on the circumstances of your business and the skillset of your team, upskilling can be a simple way to increase proficiency and drive success. Training is also a fantastic way to build resilience to unexpected events. Empowering teams to become skilled in other areas allows you to focus manpower where you need it most and take a dynamic workflow in your stride.
Make use of time management systems
Time and attendance management systems are a boon to busy companies, streamlining the payroll process and allowing remote clocking in and time capture. Using a customisable system such as CaptureIt is the ideal solution for companies in all sectors which have a need for flexible time and attendance management.
The desktop interface works in the same way as a clocking terminal; users can clock in and out, and book breaks from their PC or laptop. Users can also display their clocked hours and manage their holiday allowances.
The inclusion of a mobile interface allows team members to manage their time when traveling and when working on remote sites without desktop access. Convenience is key when adapting to a remote working environment, and the flexibility provided by using a management system with full mobile capabilities will be appreciated by employers and employees alike.
A standard feature of the CaptureIt system is that users can clock in and out using a mixture of the mobile and desktop interfaces. Working in this agile way makes it easy to accurately capture each team member’s utilisation rate and stay on top of workloads.
To ensure time and attendance management is as straightforward as possible for all, CaptureIt also supports job booking, so workers will not need to submit timesheets for each job. Minimising administrative burdens is key during this period of change and removes a layer of complexity from your operations.