How to Effectively Manage a Remote Workforce – Top Tips
Remote work took a sudden spike when COVID-19 hit the world and many organisations needed to adapt to the “new normal”. Organisations deployed different workforce models consisting of either a hybrid model (work from home and the office) or remote model (work from home). This meant that the traditional office environment and the way in which organisations needed to manage their workforce had to change. However, businesses soon realised that they needed the right technology, management style and policies in place to effectively manage their remote workforce. Below are some of our top tips to effectively manage a remote workforce.
1. Evaluate Applications and Fully Integrate Software Tools
A remote workforce will bring ineffective collaboration software tools to the surface. These software tools are not well-integrated and employees will find bottlenecks while working remotely. This will hamper employee productivity and your workforce will not be working efficiently or effectively.
When a remote employee downloads the standard business applications they use, they may discover that some of the apps are slow to use or don’t work at all. They may also need additional permissions to access these apps which slows them down. Remote employees then turn to alternate solutions using cloud applications that are unsupported by the organisation.
There are tools that can be used to identify where the inefficient systems and processes are. Intuate Groups Workforce Productivity Analytics solution, for example, can provide insights to help your organisation discover where these bottlenecks occur. With this tool you can identify which applications are actually being used and which applications are redundant. This results in streamlining business operations and reducing licensing costs.
2. Modify Operational Policies to Include Remote Work Considerations
Many organisations have not put formal remote working policies in place and standard communication tools are used with little to no adjustments for remote workers. During hybrid meetings remote workers experience being talked over, experience IT issues and realise that conversations might be happening in person which they are not made aware of. This leaves remote workers in the dark and makes it difficult for them to fully engage.
Digitizing paperwork and centralizing communications should also be noted as a problem area for remote employees. New software and workflow process implementations may need to be put in place to ensure project collaboration can be managed by both on-site and remote employees. This will create a more flexible environment for all employees.
With our solution you can test what operational processes are causing bottlenecks with your remote employees. Our solution comes with User Activity Behaviour Analytics which will provide you with digital insights to easily understand employee workflows. Leveraging on this information will assist you in identifying key areas that need to be adjusted for remote workers.
3. Track Productivity to Understand How Work is Completed
Monitoring and measuring productivity of a remote workforce is tricky without a proper solution in place. Organisations need to do this in order to get analytical information which is vital in making business decisions.
Measuring employee’s productivity is complicated because the definition of productivity is different for employees in different roles and varies by organisation, industry and department. Benchmarks need to be defined in order to get accurate insights from your employees.
With the right Workforce Productivity Analytics solution these benchmarks are used to measure employee outputs which can be measured, analysed and improved. Our solution allows you to assign “Productive” and “Unproductive” labels to applications and activities. This will allow you to view how much time was spent on productive work and which employees are spending too much time being unproductive.
4. Prevent Cybersecurity Risks from Open Perimeter Devices
The growing volume of remote workers has extended the security perimeter past what many organisations can handle. The safety and security of an organisation’s internal network is as important as safeguarding the externally facing firewall from cyberattacks. Remote employees, contractors, freelancers and third-party suppliers have access to an organization’s IP, customer data and other sensitive information as part of performing their day to day jobs. Organisations have put security policies in place to try to secure the data, but complications arise when identifying insider threats and careless use of sensitive data.
There are many challenges in detecting breaches which are not limited to only what happened and how it happened but what was the intent of the breach. Employees, on a day to day basis, share sensitive information without malicious intent. But, how can you actively manage this, uncover risky behaviours and also ensure that preventative and corrective measures are in place? Our solution will do this for you and work proactively to block access to websites that have malware. If our software detects a website of this kind, an alert will be sent to the administrator and the site will be blocked.
5. Eliminate Employee Burnout from Work/Life Balance Issues
Many remote workers find themselves working longer hours more than they ever did. They switch between work and personal priorities throughout the day. Many employees prefer this as they have flexibility, but majority say that that the fine line between work and personal life has become blurred. Organisations that collaborate with teams across different time zones require longer and unusual working hours in order to accommodate all business needs. This can cause remote workers to attend meetings during late hours of the evening among other things. This is where the struggle comes in with balancing your work and personal life which could make employees unproductive due to excessive hours or even burnout.
Our solution allows remote workers to track not only the hours they work, but understand how to work smarter and achieve the same results in less time. Employees will be able to see spikes in their productive hours and identify unproductive gaps where time can be spent better. This tool can also be used as coaching opportunities making use of the data insights. This coaching can drive engagement, change staffing levels and redistribute project tasks to optimize the team’s performance and prevent burnout.
With our solution you can effectively manage the challenges of having an efficient remote workforce. Gain visibility into how your organisation works, fix operational processes and leverage the data insights to improve the productivity of all your employees.
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