How to Transition to a Remote Workforce

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in remarkable ways. One big shift it has caused over the last two years is the transition for many companies to having a fully remote workforce. While it was once a necessity to keep everyone healthy and safe, it turns out that having a remote workforce has other benefits as well. 

Companies that embrace remote work have found two major reasons to do so: It attracts top talent with the flexibility remote work provides and lowers a company’s overhead. Employees today aren’t like the Baby Boomers of years ago. They want flexibility and the ability to find better work/life balance. For employers, you’ll find remote work is also budget-friendly. Without needing to pay for adequate office space and office supplies, you can save thousands of dollars a year. 

If you’re looking to transition your workforce from in-person to remote, here are some essential steps you need to take to make the transition smooth and productive. 

Step One: Show Your Employees Empathy

Change is difficult for most people, especially for people who are “set in their ways.” 

Honor this sentiment and approach your transition with as much empathy as possible to show employees you understand their plight. Make communication a priority in this situation, and check in with employees frequently to see how they are adjusting and what support you can provide. Regular communication will help employees feel like less of an island. 

Understand that it might take some time for employees to manage the distractions that working at home can bring. Many may have a spouse working from home, small children, or the thousands of distractions we all have from laundry to package deliveries. Give your employees time to adjust as they rework their schedules to tune out these distractions. 

Finally, provide the necessary technology they need to have a productive and successful work environment. If you want your employees to be successful, you need to set them up for it. With remote work, that means providing technology – whether software or hardware – to get the job done right. 

Step Two: Use a Centralized Platform for Work and Communication

Speaking of technology, purchase a platform that will keep all employees connected. If you want your team to remain productive and communicative, ensure you are giving them the right tools to achieve this. 

Invest in a platform that will allow team members to talk with one another, share documents, and store projects. Find a platform that allows for group chats and direct messaging so team members can continue to communicate with one another as if they were in the same office. 

Instead of meeting in the conference room every day, find a platform that allows employees to collaborate with one another from home. 

Step Three: Find Ways to Measure Success Differently

With in-person work, measuring success was often based on the employee’s physical presence. In a lot of cases, success is measured by the number of hours an employee puts in.

Remote work requires different metrics to make sure your team is on target. Establish clear key performance indicators that employees should individually and collectively be working toward.  Shift to a mindset where employees reaching personal and team KPIs is more important than the amount of time they spend in front of their computer. 

Step Four: Create a Reporting System

Managers and directors must be aware of progress being made toward KPIs. However, being remote can make this more of a challenge. Create a policy that each employee provides management with a detailed status of their projects regularly. This procedure can involve written updates, quick messages through Slack, or Zoom meetings with the team. Also, consider if you want to know daily, weekly, biweekly, or monthly specific progress they are making toward individual and team goals. 

Step Five: Continuously Communicate

At first, working remotely can be a shock to the system and make an employee feel alone in their work. However, clear and consistent communication is key to keeping the team feeling like they are working together. 

Platforms such as Slack can help employees stay connected to management and one another while working from different zip codes. You can also utilize virtual newsletters or videos to communicate company information to all employees so they always feel “in the loop.”

Establish a communication schedule so employees know when they can hear from you to just check in and see how things are going. 

Ready to go remote?

If you’re looking for the best remote workforce, look no further than Epic Placements. We have pre-vetted hundreds of potential candidates looking for the flexibility of remote work. Contact us today to find the perfect candidate for your remote work open position.

Are you looking to work remotely for a company? Contact us today to discuss how we can find you the best remote position for your skills and experience.