The past couple of years have seen tremendous change in the telecommuting world as the number of remote workers shot up (and still expected to keep increasing), tremendously. For this reason, hiring and working remotely have had their own fair share of challenges.
However, a site such as testGorilla has made everything remote-working easier for both employers and employees, helping businesses continue to thrive, even in the virtual world. In this article, we point out some of the challenges of working remotely and bring to you some of the best expert tips to improve.
Challenges Faced Working Remotely
Remote working could be super lonely. Moving from the traditional working offices and settings to working completely alone in your bedroom or home office could take a toll on your performance and productivity. Most people underrate the power of the coffee and lunch breaks, the jokes and laughs at the office, and the social interactions.
While telecommuting poses the risk of removing the sense of social interaction and community, these have proven to positively impact productivity in terms of support networks and computer activity tracking. When employees feel isolated, it takes a toll on their way of working. And adapting to working from home also takes some time, when you are used to your colleagues at work.
Alongside working in an isolation-like environment, invisibility is another major factor that affects working remotely. Being out of sight could be hard to even notice good work. Ask about 30% of full-time remote workers and they will tell you they haven’t reviewed their successes with their managers in most likely more than 6 months.
And failing to receive recognition could bring a dangerous effect on remote workers. It doesn’t just affect self-esteem but also has an impact when it comes to considerations for promotions. In most cases, remote workers don’t get the same treatment and judgment as those in the office.
Most remote work, especially during the early days of transitioning from the traditional office settings to telecommunications, find it hard to manage their time effectively. Not because they are lazy or poor time managers but because of the change.
It may take a while to adapt to the fact that you don’t have to be in the office by 9 am, or you don’t have to check the ‘office schedule, and that you have to make your own schedule. It also messes up with your brain; you have to figure out the times you are most productive at home.
In the end, you get to waste a lot of time trying to figure things out all over and tackling your job from a different angle. However, it becomes easier with time.
Tips for Improving Remote Work
None of the challenges mentioned above can’t be worked out. If well-managed, sooner or later you start to enjoy the full benefits of remote working as the employee and the employer too. Here are some tips;
Keep it Visible and Regulated
Everyone wants to be recognized at the company, whether they are working in the office or a full-time remote worker. With advancements in technology, keeping everyone together and on the same page has never been made easier. As an employer, the best thing to do is invest in some tools to keep everything and everyone in check.
Some tools are great for recording everything your employees are up to and what they are working on to a private timeline that can be shared amongst the rest of the team. You can see all the time they spend working at different times and especially the overtime hours they sacrifice. By seeing all this, it will be easier to build more effective schedules.
Build a Community
There is a reason why most companies invest in team buildings. The benefit of interacting with one another and strengthening the bond between employees while they are out playing games and engaging in non-office activities definitely reflects when they get back to work.
The same should happen even with remote workers. Not necessarily team building activities but creating a community and setting some time for this community to interact on a face-to-face basis, engage in multiple activities, and bond would go a long way in improving remote working.
Have the Right Set-Up
For telecommuting, those working at home may find it hard to focus, especially if they haven’t mastered some strong time-management skills. All the other activities around you could steal your focus; loud music from your neighbor, kids playing around, sirens and traffic outside, and more.
The key to overcoming this is having the right setup, in the right place, and at the right time. You want to figure out the time you have the most focus and you are most productive and leverage on that. You also want to make sure you have all the necessary tools and working equipment to help you work seamlessly.