For many employees, the shift to working 100% from home has been a challenging one. Many are working alongside their spouse with limited office space while others have their children’s homeschool schedules to manage in addition to their work responsibilities. Some may be caring for at-risk family members or struggling with isolation if they live alone. Working from home with little notice due to COVID-19 has its hurdles, but employers and employees can take the following steps to maximize their productivity.
- Create a general schedule for everyone. An employee’s work schedule no longer exists in the insulated walls of their work building. They need to outline what the new daily routine will look like to include sleep schedules, work hours, school obligations, meal times, outdoor/recreation time, screen time, and more. Employees may need rigid hours or flexible time slots to make a schedule work for their family. However, having a basic plan for how the day will unfold can help keep everyone on track and keep chaos to a minimum.
- Accept that work will be different than it was before. Trying to force an office building-oriented routine onto a working-from-the-kitchen-table scenario will fail every time. Employees will only be able to complete a certain amount of work if there are several other people living at home with them. Limited office space, a significant increase in the relative volume level, limited access to previous resources and tools, and a host of distractions will drastically overhaul the appearance of a typical workday. Employers and employees will need a significant degree of flexibility to avoid burnout.
- Schedule work hours and stick to them. Having other people around such as a spouse, extended family members, or children can derail a workday without much effort. It’s important for the employee to establish clear work hours and let everyone know they are unavailable to chat or play during that time frame barring emergencies.
- Outline a weekly work plan. With more things competing with employee’s time while working from home, outlining a plan for each day can help. Having a schedule lets employees know exactly what they need to do when they sit down at their computer rather than wasting rare uninterrupted time figuring out where to start. Several online project management tools can help with this.
Finding ways to improve productivity, engagement, and morale can help reduce employees’ stress, the likelihood of burnout, and attendance problems. To learn more about managing attendance with a remote workforce, contact the experts at Actec.