Managing the Remote Worker
Office workers take for granted that solutions to queries may only require a quick look up from the desk to chat to a colleague. However, remote workers often have to engage in long email chains to get responses to questions that could be answered quickly if they were around office colleagues and this is something that businesses need to consider if they have remote staff.
Employees that struggle with this approach to working may feel isolated if they work remotely. Good communication is therefore key to supporting remote workers. Here are some tips to managing remote workers effectively:
1. Remember that remote workers may not want to travel to meetings too often. The whole point of being a remote worker is that travel is reduced so do not make assumptions about their availability for meetings in the office, or with clients. Work out in advance what availability remote workers have to travel and remember that they were engaged not to attend work, so bear this in mind if asking them to do so.
2. Find a way of ensuring that remote workers can build relationships. Just because employees don’t work in the office doesn’t mean they don’t want to have friends at work. Camaraderie at work is crucial for the employee’s happiness at work, thus affecting their productivity too.
3. Remote workers do not have constant eyes on them so managers need to find ways of measuring productivity and of “checking in” to ensure that the right work is being done at the right time by remote workers. Consider how this will be measured and agree communication methods in advance.
Applying careful consideration to managing remote workers will help ensure that they remain engaged and productive and that they can be valuable assets to the business.