Across the globe Google searches are being performed on ‘how to efficiently set up my employees to WFH’ or ‘how to run a company remotely’.
While the information on working from home is plentiful, many of the articles are pre-Coronavirus and their tips are less applicable when the whole management and IT teams are also quarantined at home with no one to oversee a transition from the office.
Are your customers at home trying to figure out how to keep their company running remotely? Let’s help them get started.
Technology to set up a remote workforce
1. Communication Solution
The first step to setting up a remote workforce is implementing a communication solution. Unified Communications software gives employees all of the tools they need to effectively communicate individually and in groups, for example:
- Telepresence allows the team to see who is online and available. This is not just about accountability at work, but also about keeping a headcount of employees during a global health crisis.
- Videoconferencing is almost as effective as sitting around the table at the office. It takes some getting used to, but the face-to-face interaction will be great for the business and the team spirit.
- UC offers many other features that are valuable to a remote workforce like individual and group chat, callback, drag-and-drop conferencing, and more. See Features and Tools that Support Productive Remote Working for more on this topic.
Setting up a remote communication solution from home shouldn’t be any harder than from the office. Help your customers through the process by giving them a solution that just needs to be downloaded and installed.
2. Project Management Software
Now that your customers have their teams back in consistent and effective contact, they need another tool to support collaboration and productivity. A project management system like Wrike, Slack, or Jira allows teams to create workflows that are essential to working remotely.
A good project management software will allow users to create long and short-term projects, set goals and deadlines, monitor progress, and share materials needed for completion.
Similar to the communication software, anyone should be able to set this up from a home office or the dining room table. They can get a few demos on the different options, choose the one that is a best fit, and download it and go.
3. Mobile app
Finally, you can give your customers an extra layer of convenience and continuity with a mobile app. Mobile UC apps take most of the collaboration tools from your communication software and put them right on your mobile phone.
The COVID-19 pandemic did not give any of us much time to prepare for working from home, so many people lack a strong Internet connection, their office hardware, and a quiet place to work.
A mobile app like gloCOM GO lets users stay connected if the Internet goes down or if they have to shut themselves in the bathroom just to get a few minutes of peace and quiet.
Once you give your customers the technology they need to succeed remotely, you can also educate them on how to use these tools to make their team productive.
Strategies to set up a remote workforce
1. Establish a workflow
Micromanagement with a remote workforce is a lost cause, so teach your customers to use their collaboration software to establish a workflow with clear goals and deadlines. They shouldn’t worry about when or how the team is getting things done as long as the deadlines are met.
2. Establish a hierarchy
A clear hierarchy is important for remote workers that may be unsure of who gives approval on what, where to send that question about their next paycheck, or how to request a few days off to get their personal lives organized.
Establishing a hierarchy so that employees know where to turn and how to initiate contact is important during the crisis.
While this is an uncertain time and some control and productivity are naturally going to be lost, if we look at the bright side there are advantages to remote workforces (see our post on Advantages of Hiring Remote Workers).
We want to help. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get in contact with someone who can help you get started.