Working from home might be what your business has to do right now but it’s nothing new. Businesses of all sizes and descriptions have been choosing to work remotely for ages. A recent survey by hardware company Owl Labs revealed that businesses offering remote work have a 25% lower employee turnover than businesses that don’t.
Employees clearly prefer to work from home, but it’s not just them who stand to benefit. When you open up your business to remote work you save on overhead expenses, hire from a global pool of potential employees, decrease your environmental footprint and maximise staff productivity. That’s your triple bottom line (people, planet and profit) sorted.
Okay, so everyone loves remote work, but how do you get it right? We’re so glad you asked. This is how we support our remote workforce and ensure that our business succeeds. Feel free to steal our winning formulae
Communication is critical for a successful remote team. Your employees will need to over-communicate to be more productive without the option of face-to-face interactions. Open and enthusiastic communications between workers will encourage them to be more proactive and to feel included in all aspects of the business. Technology is a lifesaver in this regard.
There’s a wealth of tools available that go beyond email to promote communications for your remote workforce, so take full advantage of them. Platforms such as Slack, Jive, Yammer and Microsoft Teams keep your employees connected and engaged throughout the workday. They are completely customisable for your business objectives and available on desktop, mobile and online.
Solving daily business challenges will look a little different when your team is working remotely, but different can still be good. We already know that remote work boosts productivity. And one of the ways this happens is through real-time, tech-driven collaboration between employees and across departments. Siloed work structures are an issue that affect many businesses and placing more physical distance between employees has a strange way of breaking down these barriers.
From brainstorming sessions to video conferencing and actual output, there are many ways to equip your employees with the necessary tools to collaborate seamlessly. Office 365 and Google’s G Suite are designed for real-time collaboration on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. They also include powerful video-conferencing applications in which teams can share their screens and literally get on the same page.
Company culture is one of the main issues that business leaders are wary of losing because of remote work. If your team isn’t physically together, can it still be as awesome as it is in the office? We think your team can be even more awesome if you leverage the digital resources at your disposal and combine them with some creative thinking.
We mentioned Microsoft Teams as an example of a useful communication tool to achieve business goals, but it can also be used for more informal purposes. Watercooler banter is an underrated factor of office culture and you can keep it alive by creating a Teams channel for your remote team to discuss anything outside of the scope of work. Employees can share Netflix recommendations, recipes for quick meals and wellness tips.
You can also use video-conferencing tools like Zoom to encourage your team to gather informally. They can do at-home exercises together in the morning to get those endorphins going or have a virtual lunch table once a week. Keep things voluntary and fun and you’ll be surprised at how your work culture is capable of adapting and thriving.
The all-important fourth C
The first three Cs that make a remote team successful will be impossible without the last C – cloud technology. Employees need secure and reliable access to their business-critical data and applications while working from home – and no one understands this better than we do. That’s why STS dedicates itself to offering industry-leading cloud infrastructure to support remote workforces of all sizes.
Our cloud storage and back-up solutions are engineered for modern businesses with dynamic teams. They deliver the reliability to do business anywhere while protecting you from data threats. You can scale your capacity as the needs of your business evolve and empower your staff to use cloud technology to perform at their best from the comfort and safety of their homes.
Find out more about our edge-to-core solutions and how they can assist your business by downloading this informative guide.