If we could peek into the future to see the impact that COVID-19 will have on business culture, the need to successfully run your company with a remote workforce is a foregone conclusion.
What was once a growing trend just got a boost of rocket fuel. And while we can’t predict the future, the need for businesses to be able to operate remotely is real, and flexible working will become a requirement to attract and retain top talent.
So, what do we really mean when we use the term: remote workforce?
A remote workforce solution provides secure, controlled, and centralized access to all business functions. It is a business solution that consolidates and optimizes all areas of your business to allow the business owner to work however you feel best suits the business and gives you the flexibility to quickly change that when the need arises.
For close to ten years now our technology solutions team at Revolt has successfully managed a remote workforce.
Here are a few lessons we have learned when working with a company to design remote workforce solutions:
Set clear and strategic goals.
What are you trying to accomplish by establishing a remote workforce? Perhaps you want to increase productivity, improve team morale and retention rates? Maybe you are looking to cut overhead costs and need to reduce or repurpose your office space?
Questions that I ask when we are taking a client through the discovery process include, do your teams need to collaborate? What are your company goals? What technology do you feel is working well and what is not working?
Often times a CEO will want to be able to let their employees work from home, however, when they are making a remote workspace solution decision, they are not thinking about how this weaves into the larger strategic company goals.
A well-executed remote workspace solution can solve multiple pain points on a company’s strategic plan.
Know how quickly you need to move.
Are you able to operate at all? Do you need to get up and running in days or weeks or months? The answers to these questions will help guide how to move forward.
I have seen many companies piece together free remote services just to get back running. In the short-term we do what we need to do, but we have to take the time and reflect what this means to our company. Most of the time, this patchwork causes more challenges. Security becomes a major concern. How do these tools increase risk to your company? Another challenge we see is companies trying to replicate what they did in the office, via these new tools. This isn’t remote working – remote working is a new skill and your team needs to learn and adjust to working remotely.
If this sounds familiar, it might be time to talk to a technology partner like Revolt. Thanks to our strong relationship with Microsoft, we have been able to get companies up and running on secure remote workspace solutions in just a few weeks.
Over communicate with your team.
I post a weekly letter in Microsoft Teams to communicate to the entire company about where we are based on our goals, what’s going on this week, what’s top of mind. Everything I know, they know.
Information levels the playing field.
When managing a remote workforce it is important to post the information you want to communicate to your team in a place where they can access and absorb the information on their own schedule. This is a big lesson I have learned.
Your team looks different now, people could be working around the clock. Communication looks different. We have more communication and fewer meetings.
No one misses meetings. Meetings are now more actionable; here’s what’s broken, and let’s fix it, type of meetings.
People do miss each other. Something we started more recently at Revolt is every Thursday at 1pm we have an open video call where anyone who is interested can jump on and talk about what we are doing in our personal lives. The social connection built during those casual times makes the team stronger.
As business owners, you have the ability to improve your company, decrease overhead and increase productivity and ensure you can operate under any circumstances.
With companies like Twitter, Zillow, and Amazon extending their work from home policies through the end of 2020 and in some cases forever, what has become clear, is that we will not be going back to business as usual. We are living in a new normal and making sure your business is ready and flexible to adapt and succeed in the “new world” is paramount.
Want to figure out how to get started with a remote workforce solution specific for your business? We are here to help.