As the coronavirus patients are still increasing, companies are now forced to ask their employees to work from home. Thus, people are forced to do self-isolation to reduce the risks of contracting the virus
To help make it easier for people to work from home, some traditional companies like Amazon, Apple, Google, and Microsoft have been preparing for the outbreak.
They offered improved teleconferencing tools to their clients for free. In other words, it’s better to understand the benefits, best practices and potential safety risks involved with remote work. This helps make the transition as seamless as possible.
Even though telecommuting has become more mainstream in recent years, only 5% of employees work from home at least half of the time. It’s no wonder to think that many of the employees who have been asked to work from home due to the coronavirus may have little to no experience of it.
Only 29% of Americans can work from home, including one in 20 service workers and more than half of information workers
This means, while servers are still manning the restaurants, the technology sector has effectively gone remote.
But a work from home policy offers a variety of benefits to both the employee and their employer. These includes:
- Remote work can lead to increased productivity, which ultimately continues the business operations
- Employees become less distracted compared to an office setting
- Since employees don’t have to deal with the hazards of commuting, they will experience less stress. Lower stress levels lead to higher morale.
- With remote workers, companies can acquire less overhead and operating costs to keep their business running smoothly.
Create A Work From Home Program
Introducing work from home program can be a bit tricky. Therefore, companies should create specific guidelines and goals to make sure all employees understand what is expected from them when they work remotely. The key elements of work from home policy includes:
- Creating a workspace: Employees should find a dedicated workspace where they can focus on their work with minimal distractions.
- Having conventional technology: It is very important to set up a computer, working email, phone conferencing apps, and stable internal connection. These are all tools that employees need in working from home.
- Using a secure connection: Employees should have a secure and reliable Wi-Fi network and operate with a trusted virtual private network (VPN). The VPN makes transmitted data encrypted to protect it from tampering and interception.
- Implementing communications programs: To cut some slack, always stay in touch with employees who work from home. You could use conferencing and management tools via Teams, Skype, and Slack. It is important to get in touch with your employees. Since there are times that they will feel isolated from the rest of the team. Keep them in contact via phone, email, messaging, or video conference.
- Setting goals and expectations: This is a very crucial part of making a work from home policy. These expectations and goals should be laid out and explained well to the employees. The policy should include instructions for an employee’s daily work schedule, qualifications of workspace, instructions for reporting documents, and protection of company information.
- Testing the work from home program: Even if the situation is very urgent, you should take things slowly by creating a trial period for your employees. Take time to evaluate its effectiveness for a week. You can adjust the program based on your findings
- Trusting your employees: Your work from home program wouldn’t only depend on you. It is very crucial that employers need to have trust in their employees. Overall, you should be confident that they will get their jobs done even if they are not working on site.