With all of us continuing to work our way through the pandemic, many of our clients and companies we are talking to, are trying to develop their business model for 2021 and the years ahead. One thing that is clear, is that the future working model will never be the same as it was in the past. Employees will expect flexible working and whilst there will always be a need for office space, many organisations know that blended working practices will be the norm.
Over the last couple of months, companies have been introducing HR Transformation specialists, Organisational Development Consultants and Employee Engagement professionals into their businesses to work through their whole employee proposition, from onboarding, to performance management and a refocus on cultural values.Naturally, it has become an integral part of the role for HR too and we are seeing an increase in a requirement for HR professionals who have a strong background and focus on operational excellence.
The question is though, how can your business adapt effectively to remote working? Also, how can it take advantage of the many benefits remote working has to offer, such as reduced costs and a more productive workforce?
To support your businesses as it embraces remote working, we’ve assembled the key things needed to make the shift a resounding success.
Boost your culture and morale
It can be a challenge to preserve your culture when you ‘go remote’. However, get it right, and you’ll create a culture that can be more productive and happier than its office-based counterpart.
Here’s how to make this a reality:
- Train your staff to communicate with one-another using online tools, and to collaborate effectively in this new environment. Regular workshops are key here.
- Ingrain business values and clarify goals wherever possible. With a shared mission and set of values, you’ll consolidate your culture and increase productivity.
- Maintain social events and space for office chit-chat using software, such as Microsoft Teams. Also, build a ‘culture calendar’ and pack it with online quizzes, online 1-1s, and other fun group meetings that nourish your culture.
- Preserving morale and continuing to build your culture is key when you make the shift to remote working. But, to do so, you’ll (naturally) need to use the right software.
Implement the right tools
With the right applications, your business will elegantly bridge into remote working. Video conferencing, project management, productivity software – there’s a solution for each that will empower your business.
However, how do you go about finding the right software and then bring it into your business?
Consider the following:
- Audit your existing applications and subscriptions. Microsoft 365 has a wide range of tools that you might not be using.
- Consult with technology and remote working specialists and get their input on what software solutions will suit your business needs.
- Test software and find what gets results for your business. Consider polling your staff to find out what they enjoy and works for them; also, use analytics software to assess what’s working.
- Provide your staff with resources and support
- When things move online, you’ll need to digitize resources and information so staff can get their work done. You’ll also need to clarify how staff can get support when they need it.
Building and consolidating a resource library will empower your staff so they can move forward by themselves. This central resource will also help new hires to quickly (and autonomously) upskill themselves.
When staff need support from others, it’s important to give them clear guidance on who they should contact and how. Then, they can use tools like Microsoft Teams to immediately get the help they need. Here’s our guide for getting the most out of Teams.
Make your business a remote working success
Covid-19 has pushed businesses to embrace remote working in order to survive. But remote working isn’t a new trend. Companies have implemented and benefited from remote working for years. Indeed, in 2019, 61 percent of global companies allowed their staff some sort of remote working policy.
So, whilst we know human contact and office space will be so important too, we can all make remote working a success, and by using the right applications, focusing on culture, and providing staff with resources, we will be well on our way.