Now that we our lives are global, more and more businesses are seeing the benefits of having a virtual office: reduced operations cost, happier staff, and increased production to name a few. On the flip side, there are a few problems that arise from working remotely.
Remote workers face problems that are not usually seen in a traditional workplace. So if you want to make the most out of your business and motivate your remote workers to their fullest, watch out and prepare for these trouble spots:
1. Training is tricky
If your remote workers have recently transitioned from in-office to a remote working place, you better brace yourself for difficult training sessions ahead. It will take more effort on your part, as well as patience, because the only form of communication that you’ll have with your employees will be thru emails and IMs.
To clear up any misunderstandings and issues faster, assign knowledgeable support staff that could provide guidance with your new remote employees. This way, they will feel that they have a mentor whom they can always call for help.
2. Issues on hardware and software compatibility
Not all people are technologically inclined and having a remote work setup can be frustrating, especially when issues on hardware and software arise. Without any IT support staff nearby, productivity time will be drastically affected.
It’s best to practice being proactive and provide your employees with guidelines for fixing issues. You can also provide tutorials and FAQs on how to properly use the tools that you will provide. This way you’ll save your remote workers downtime and the hassle of dealing with hardware and software incompatibility.
3. No social life
The office is one big social space for many people and the transition from on-site to remotely working can be a shock to newbies. Having a new work environment all to yourself will be a new experience, plus it takes some time to accept the fact that they’ve lost the social aspect they’ve always been used to.
To save your staff from the loneliness of working alone, organize regular staff event so that they’ll get the chance to know the other people they’re working with in the cyber office.
4. Rewards are somewhat intangible
Most remote workers feel their worth being disregarded and their efforts unnoticed because of the cyber barrier in remote workplaces. As a supervisor, make them feel valued by giving them positive feedback to increase their morale.
While a tap on the back and a verbal praise is next to impossible in a remote working place, spending time to make a customized short email on their job well done will suffice.
5. Promotion can take a long time
Working remotely can be a big challenge for those who want to climb up the ladder of the workforce. With the work distribution, they will feel more often than not more like a tool to get the job done without their abilities being noticed. This is especially true when companies also employ on-site staff.
As the employer, it is your responsibility to make it clear that promotions are performance based, so that remote staff will feel they are as visible and valuable as on site employees.
While remote working provides numerous benefits, there are also problems that need to be dealt with. This way, the distribution of workload will be easier and your work staff will be happier and more productive and satisfied with how you handle the business.