Traditional workforce teams are supported by strong leaders, effective systems and processes, and a supportive office environment. Supporting a remote workforce requires a slightly different approach. While strong leadership and effective systems are still important for remote teams, they work from home in an environment only they can control. In order to be effective, remote workers need access to top-notch tools.
The bottom line is that effective employees produce better ROI. To get significant results in your organization, support your remote workforce with these essential tools.
- A condensed digital workplace suite
Corporate surveys have revealed that the average employee uses ten different digital applications to complete a day’s work. On the surface, it might seem fine because we’re all used to using multiple applications to manage productivity, but it’s actually a major productivity killer.
In a 2017 survey, more than 43% of employees reported feeling frustrated because of information and app overload. Regardless of the source, frustration and overwhelm significantly thwart productivity.
To prevent ‘app fatigue’ and the subsequent overwhelm, equip your remote team members with the digital workplace suite from Happeo. Happeo unites all of your employees, content, and tools on a single platform. Using Happeo creates the supportive office environment employees need to thrive.
- Ergonomic office furniture
Ergonomic furniture helps prevent musculoskeletal injuries, which are unfortunately increasing now that more people are working from home.
When you’re running a physical office, it’s easy to fill it with ergonomic furniture to support the health of your employees. When your team is made up of remote employees, they’ll be using their own office furniture, which may or may not be ergonomic.
You might be wondering why it’s any of your business what kinds of furniture your employees use. There are two main reasons you should be concerned. First, remote employees are subject to the same rules and regulations as on-site employees. That means if a remote employee is injured on the job, they can collect workers’ compensation insurance or file a personal injury lawsuit against you as their employer.
The second reason you should care is because remote employees are especially prone to repetitive stress injuries, including carpal tunnel syndrome. A worker with carpal tunnel misses 27 days of work on average. That’s more days missed than workers who get a limb amputated.
Support your remote workforce by supplying them with the same ergonomic tools you’d provide for them in the office. That might consist of an ergonomic chair, a desk that converts from sitting to standing, a standing mat, or a laptop riser in lieu of a standing desk.
- Subscriptions to educational course websites
Many employees have a strong desire to learn and grow in their field. Keep your employees learning with a subscription to sites like Coursera and Lynda. Give each employee a monthly allotment to spend on courses that require individual payments. The more your employees learn, the more valuable they’ll be to your organization.
Any courses or subscriptions you buy for your remote employees will be considered a business expense and should be a tax write-off.
- Professional training
Pay for your remote employees to attend pertinent professional training courses in your industry. These courses might be seminars or conferences held in person or online.
Employees committed to their careers constantly pursue professional training to build their skills. It’s a wise business move to cover the cost since you’ll benefit from everything they learn. Paying for training is also an easier way to provide ongoing training your employees without having to devote your time and resources to that training.
Remote teams are here to stay
The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed thousands of employees into a work-from-home situation, and that’s not going to change anytime soon. Employers are finding major benefits from having a remote workforce, and many don’t have plans to bring everyone back into the office. That’s good news because not everyone wants to come back into the office. According to Gallup, nearly two-thirds of employees forced to work remotely because of the coronavirus say they’d like to keep working from home.
Even after the coronavirus pandemic is over, adjusting your systems to support a remote workforce will remain a necessity. By providing your remote team with the tools outlined in this article, you’ll be ahead of the game.