Strategies to Improve Working From Home
Remote work has swept the nation since the rise of the pandemic. Although things are starting to go back to “normal,” remote work seems to be here to stay. In fact, many companies are considering switching to remote work permanently. An Upwork study found 41.8% of U.S. workers are still working fully remote. This number is expected to go up as more and more businesses switch to remote work.
From isolation to a lack of structure, many employees face challenges working fully remote. These challenges can negatively affect employees’ mental health, productivity, and feelings towards their job. To combat this, here are some strategies you can implement to help boost the satisfaction of your at-home employees.
Establish Social Points
Loneliness is one of the biggest struggles remote workers face. For many, work is one of their main forms of social interaction. Being isolated from other employees causes workers to feel alone and depressed. This can be especially hard for more introverted employees that rely on natural conversation to interact with others. To help this, set up social points. This can be as simple as scheduling catch-up meetings, study halls for people to work virtually together, or doing a morning coffee meeting to kickstart the day. If you have employees close by, consider renting meeting rooms or office space to allow employees to interact with one another. By fostering socialization, employees can build meaningful connections and interact with their coworkers.
Burnout has increased more than ever among employees. Working, eating, sleeping, all in the same place can drive anyone mad. To help prevent this, encourage your employees to practice self-care. Remind them to take breaks or to go outside once in a while. Taking a second to relax and get a breath of fresh air can be just the reset an employee needs. Make sure to check up on your workers and find out ways you can help them achieve that work-life balance.
Being remote can decrease performance confidence, which can cause increased anxiety in workers. Now more than ever is the time to recognize your employee’s efforts and achievements. Give your workers a safe place to express their stress. Have communication channels for people to come with questions or concerns–this could be a mentor meeting or even a simple optional office hour. Set up goals for your employees outside of their every-day-tasks to stimulate personal growth. Having goals outside of work tasks can help boost morale, knowledge, and a sense of belonging.
Supply the Essentials
Give workers the tools and technology they need to work from home. If you don’t want to supply directly, offer a remote bonus to help your employees pay for office supplies and essentials. Provide classes or videos so not-so-tech-savvy employees are able to work from home smoothly. Have a plan of action or a person employees can contact if there are technical issues. With plans and packages in place, your workers can feel more confident and prepared if problems arise.
Offer Relocation Assistance
If you do have plans to go hybrid or just want to consolidate a location for your workers, consider offering relocation assistance. Financial stress often leads to a decrease in job performance, and the main cause of this is poor money management. Help support your workers’ decision to move by providing them with financial planning resources. Knowledge is power. Giving employees insight on things like home credit score requirements and how to properly budget can be a great stress reliever for your employees. You could even go as far as giving them a relocation bonus or help pay for the moving costs. Offering assistance like this will show your employees that you care about their well-being and will help to mitigate financial stress.
The world of business is changing, and to stay ahead we must adapt. Remote work may not be forever, but it is the current state we are in. During these times it is important to listen to your employees and work with them to come up with the best solution to meet their needs.