As our company has grown, remote working has become a big part of how we operate. Being dynamic and responsive has enabled us to serve our clients better than ever and, given the current global situation, we feel it is especially timely to share this knowledge. In an effort to help others as businesses and individuals transition to remote working in the coming days and weeks, we’ve built out a “best-practices” guide based on what’s worked for us as we established our own remote systems.
Making sure that you have tools in place to stay connected is critical to enable successful remote working. Having the appropriate systems and software to help manage your workflow (for us, project management) makes the transition to working remotely much smoother. Below are our best-practices and guidelines for keeping your team connected and your work moving.
Of course internet access is required to work remotely, but it’s about more than just ‘having internet’. In order for you and your employees to maintain the efficiencies of the office remotely, a reliable, high-speed and (most importantly) secure Internet connection is a requirement. While working remote can and often does happen on the go, public sources of Wi-Fi such as coffee shops or airports, should never be the primary means of work. These types of connections make your work and information more susceptible to being compromised, as well as often return much slower upload and download speeds which can hinder productivity.
When you’re not in the office, it’s even more important to remain accessible. Keep your phone on your person (and not on silent), to make sure that you can be tracked down if and when something comes up — and be flexible in the event that someone has stepped away from their computer to grab a drink or stretch their legs.
In addition, overcommunication is key to alleviating some of the strains that can come from not sharing an office space. It’s important to be clear about your day’s schedule with things like appointments and lunch breaks so they can easily be planned for and worked around. Utilizing a shared calendar to track these types of appointments helps to avoid potential scheduling conflicts and allows flexibility to structure one’s day.
Email is great, but to help with some of the above, we like to use real-time communication channels, specifically for company-wide information. This helps keep everyone up to date and informed while also giving employees individual communication channels for project and team-specific work. We’re big fans of:
When presenting work or hashing out creative concepts, sometimes a phone call can’t quite do the job. We use digital meeting software to help facilitate and keep meetings personal. Some of our favorites are:
It can be easy to slow down a little bit when working from home, but it’s important to maintain productivity so that the company continues to function and you can maintain a normalized structure to your day.
Whether it’s your dining room table or a complete home office, it’s important to establish a space that is designed to get work done. Separating your work and play keeps you focused and attentive and also helps maintain an important work/life balance.
As tempting as it is to roll out of bed at 7:59, getting up, getting some breakfast and getting dressed for the day go a long way when it comes to maintaining productivity in your home office.
While the work you’re doing remains the same, the way you work changes when going remote. Make full use of productivity software put in place to ensure tasks and projects receive the same level of attention and detail. If you have a shared server or employee intranet, work with your IT team to ensure all employees have remote access to these platforms. It’s also important to leave a (digital) paper trail behind your work, making it easier for others to follow behind and know the status of projects.
Project management Software
Robust project management software can keep your projects and tasks on track, and even increase productivity when used correctly. A few we really like are:
Productivity Tracking Software
Keep yourself on track with productivity software such as:
It’s easy to get sucked into work when you’re working at home, but it’s important to try and keep yourself balanced. Make time to move–get up and move around a little every hour, and if your next call doesn’t require you to be at the computer, try taking it outside and get some fresh air. In addition, keep regular lunch, snack and mental breaks away from your desk — it’s even more important to keep a clear line of work / life balance when you’re working from home.
With the current climate surrounding the Coronavirus outbreak, it’s important to care for your mental health as well through the use of reputable, factual sources. The links below are the best places to get accurate, informative information and keep yourself up to date as the situation evolves.
If you’re interested in learning more about our remote working policies or for help on establishing your own, fill out the form below.