Remote workers can be a valuable asset to your organization. Remote workers and working from home are increasingly being used by all types of organizations. Just like the rest of your team, it’s important to find the right fit. You need to find a remote worker who meets the job requirements but also fits within your company culture, even if they aren’t in the office every day.
1. Create the Right Environment
Your organization needs to fully embrace a remote-friendly workplace. It starts with recruiting and it’s then followed up by having the right processes, technology, and practices to support your team of remote workers. They cannot be an afterthought or be treated as a secondary group of employees. You can’t just leave them to their work and have them report back occasionally. They should be treated just as important as the employees who are in the office each day.
2. Hire the Right Remote Workers
A key to retaining your remote workforce is to hire the right people. Not everyone is cut out to work remotely. You need a certain level of independence, reliability, and self-motivation to make it work. When recruiting, it’s important to not only look for the right person for the job but the right person who can do the job remotely.
3. Get the Technology Right
Remote workers need even more access to the right technology and tools to do the job. They need external access to all tools, resources, and programs to do their job effectively. You should also have the right collaboration technology in place to make it easier for you and others to integrate remote workers into the fold. Video meetings, internal instant messaging, and other digital tools can help remote employees more effectively integrate themselves into the company culture, even if it’s via the internet.
4. Ramp Up Communication
All managers, project leaders and employees need to foster an environment of strong communication. It can be easy to forget to include a remote worker in a quick meeting or overlook the importance of having conversations with them on a regular basis.
How you communicate also needs to be considered. While email may be the default, it’s still important to pick up the phone and have real conversations with your remote team. Plan video staff meetings and find ways to include them in team building activities.
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