With the pandemic continuing to affect business worldwide, remote work has become not only a necessity but a productive, flexible, and empowering way to work. Companies are having to decide how to incorporate remote work into their new normal for the long term.
Some businesses have decided to permanently allow employees to work from home, while others are moving to a blended work environment as soon as it is feasible. Either way, remote work in some form or fashion is here to stay, and companies need to prepare for the workplace of the future.
So, what should previously office-bound organizations expect as remote work takes center stage?
Remote Work Will Impact Recruiting and Retention: Hiring and recruiting employees who live beyond your normal prospective employee pool may now be within your reach. On the other hand, with so many organizations moving to remote work, the competition to hire these employees may become harder. Fortunately, you can increase your odds of recruiting and retaining excellent talent by creating a robust remote company culture.
Create A Robust Remote Company Culture: In some ways, company culture at an in-person office is easier to establish than in a remote work environment. But when your company is entirely online, the face-to-face interactions that dictate so much of how it “feels” to work somewhere are gone. This doesn’t mean you can’t create a remote work culture.
Have a plan on how you will onboard new employees:
- Create a welcome video from the CEO.
- Give new employees a swag-bag with company logo wear.
- Pair the new team member up with a “buddy” who isn’t on the new person’s team to meet someone outside of their department and get a whole new perspective of the company.
Keep Up More Casual Communication Habits: If you usually catch up with colleagues in person before a big meeting, do the same before dialing into a group conference call when everyone is remote. If you normally chat with your admin assistant first thing in the morning, do the same remotely by IM. You should confirm receipt of messages, check in with people when you start your day, and end your day. Try to follow the same rituals and habits to maintain relationships and a sense of normalcy.
Results Will Matter More Than Hours: Emphasizing outcomes over hours with your team is the new frontier of remote work, and the benefits of trusting your employees to get their work done when and how best works for them far outweigh any potential downsides. When it’s all said and done, an employee’s ability to complete quality work and move tasks and projects forward is much more indicative of their performance than how many hours they work. And when they feel trusted and empowered to do their best work, they’ll be more productive, happier, and more engaged team members.
Remote Work Is Here to Stay
There’s no question about it—for most companies, remote work is here to stay for the immediate future. Whether companies have plans to remain fully remote or are just until they have a better idea of what the future holds. Going into a remote work environment with eyes wide open will prepare companies and their employees for long-term success.