Implementing a work-from-home policy can reap benefits for your employees and your company. Studies show that employees are happier when they work from home. Two-thirds of employees would rather work from home and 36 percent would choose it over a pay raise. And, companies benefit by retaining those employees they've worked so hard to hire and keep. But before you implement a remote policy, ask yourself these four questions:
Do You Trust Your Employees?
Some managers feel that if they can't see their employees, their employees aren't working. In reality, working from home allows your employees to work for long stretches, uninterrupted, whenever the mood strikes. Businesses lose $600 billion a year in workplace distractions. But, it's still important to set expectations. Iron out how many days a week an employee can work from home, what hours they will work, how they'll submit projects and how they can be reached. Setting expectations now can help avoid future conflict.
Can You Make Remote Employees Feel Like Part of the Company?
Remote employees can feel isolated at times. Being off-site, they miss out on experiencing the company culture. For some companies, remote workers share their lives on Instagram to help them connect and build empathy within teams. Help build camaraderie within your own organization by creating virtual hangout spaces. Include your remote employees in meetings and casual get-togethers. Don't forget to recognize your remote employees' efforts and achievements either with a quick note or a shout out at a department meeting.
Can You Provide Seamless Communication Tools?
Communication between remote employees and the rest of the staff can be a challenge. Everyone on the team needs to be on the same page about projects and problems and your remote employees can't walk to a fellow employee's desk or run into them in the hall to share information. Plus, without open, easy communication, your remote employees could miss important information. Chat groups, emails, phone calls and video conferencing go a long way towards making your remote employees feel like they are down the hall, not across the state, country or world.
Do You Have Adequate IT Infrastructure in Place?
Contrary to what you may think, security isn't your biggest IT concern. In fact, 90 percent of those charged with security in large organizations feel that home-based workers are not a security concern. Your IT employees are likely more concerned about employees who take work out of the office, without the proper training or technologies in place. An adequate IT infrastructure should give remote workers, and even traditional workers who travel, safe access to the company network, software and data. These types of changes are easy to achieve, for example cloud-based services like Google Drive and DropBox make sharing easy, but should be in place before you implement your policy.
BirdDogHR Complete Talent Management Software is completely mobile-compatible, allowing employees to easily and safely access information anywhere, anytime. Contact us or schedule a demo today for more information.