In recent years the number of people working from outside the office has increased dramatically. Huge advances in technology have enabled businesses to connect remotely and develop their process around workers’ increasingly busy and complex lives. It is not always convenient or possible for all team members to have a physical presence in the office and if executed correctly working remotely should maintain, if not maximise, the productivity, success and happiness of businesses and their people.
Working remotely is all about building a routine, just like you will have done when you started working in the office. Establish which tasks you will aim to complete that day and time-budget for maximum efficiency.
Typically there are more distractions when working outside the office; perhaps you are taking care of small children or have important home maintenance issues to attend to, but this does not mean that your productivity should suffer. In fact, knowing in advance that these things may take up some of your attention should motivate you to plan more effectively and really push through tasks in periods when you can be completely focused.
With today’s technology, you can, in theory, work anywhere - but there a few key environmental factors which will really help to boost your productivity. Though working from the depths of the sofa may be tempting, do not underestimate the importance of a good sized desk and a comfortable chair. Having a designated work space where you know you can concentrate will really improve your focus.
A common issue people raise about remote working is that they feel they are less able to contact colleagues when they are not physically in the office. To address this, clear communication should be at the forefront of your mind when you are working remotely. Set up a team group chat at the beginning of the day informing the applicable individuals of your schedule; which tasks you will be working on, what your aims are for the day and when you will be available to contact.
Check in regularly with your team and let them know when you are stepping away from your computer. No one wants to ring a colleague who’s working from home with an urgent problem, get no answer and have no explanation for why they are unavailable. You should aim to be “just a click away” not “out of sight out of mind”.
Working remotely is still a fairly new initiative and not all companies offer this privilege, so don’t abuse it! It is in everyone’s interest to prove that working from home really is a viable option for the future so stay motivated. Follow the tips above and support colleagues who choose to work remotely to ensure that the future of working is as life-friendly as possible.
Flexibility is essential to modern day working and if these steps are followed working remotely can really help businesses achieve a good work life balance and boost the happiness and morale of employees.