The Key to Managing a Remote Workforce Amid COVID-19 Challenges

As COVID-19 started sweeping its way across the nation, companies embraced the remote workforce concept. In some cases, the drastic change was mandated by state or local governments. In others, it was conscientious decisions made to keep employees healthy.

Permanent employees, temporary workers from staffing agencies in Solon, Ohio, and everyone in-between are starting to work from home. This creates unique challenges for managers, especially those who haven’t previously overseen a remote workforce.

While the situation is daunting, it is possible to navigate these COVID-19 challenges and remain productive. If you want to know how to manage your new remote workforce, here are some tips that can help.

Create a Structure and Define Expectations

Working remotely is a dramatic shift for many professionals. Direct oversight usually isn’t part of the equation, and this can lead to issues if employees aren’t sure how to spend their time.

By taking a moment to create a clear structure and to define your expectations, you can set the right tone. It lets employees know what needs to be completed and when first and foremost. Additionally, it allows you to dictate when workers need to check-in, how they should communicate, and more. This adds a degree of predictability, which can make the situation less intimidating or confusing.

Have Multiple Communication Options Available

When everyone is working remotely, you need several communication options available. Along with traditional approaches like email, make sure to add solutions with robust feature sets, like collaboration software. The goal is to have text-, voice-, and video-based methods readily available, as well as helpful capabilities like screen and file sharing. That way, employees can choose the approach that best suits their needs at any particular time.

Create Opportunities for Socializing

Many people feel disconnected from their teams when they work remotely. The lack of face-to-face interaction can create a sense of distance, harming morale, and collaboration.

While you can’t get together in-person for watercooler chats, do make room for socialization. Have channels in your messaging software that can be used for non-work-related chatting. Start work calls by catching up on each other’s lives outside of work. Schedule multi-participant video calls so everyone can talk and see one another.

The goal is to find opportunities to share and socialize. That way, a sense of belonging is maintained, and your employees won’t feel as isolated.

Be Empathetic and Encouraging

It’s important to remember that not all employees will adapt quickly to working remotely. If a worker is struggling, try to be supportive and encouraging. This isn’t a paradigm they chose, so you need to be empathetic. Reassure them that you appreciate their efforts and see if there is anything you can do to help. Be patient, especially near the beginning. That way, your team knows you are behind them, even if it’s taking them some time to adapt.

Do You Need to Expand Your Team to Remain Productive During COVID-19?

Vector Technical Inc. – a leading staffing agency in Solon, Ohio – works diligently to help area businesses navigate workforce management challenges, including those created by COVID-19. Let our skilled staff find the experienced professionals you need to remain productive during these difficult times. If you want to secure some of the best Ohio job seekers, request an employee today!