work from home best practices

Remote employee engagement: How to get the best out of your team

Even before the recent push to work from home due to Corona virus, many businesses were hiring remote employees.

In recent years, remote working has become the norm rather than an exception. A significant number of companies are now offering their employees a chance to work from home. Individuals are also choosing remote work since it gives them flexibility. It also ensures that they save time spent on their office commute. Remote working gives employees an opportunity to take care of personal matters, such as caring for family members.

Why employees prefer remote work

However, there are also certain challenges, especially for employers. They need to make sure that their remote employees are engaged and motivated to perform to the best of their abilities. So what can employers do increase engagement of their remote employees?

This blog will help you understand how to increase engagement of remote employees, improve efficiency and reduce probability of turnover.

Increase Participation of Remote Employees

The first way is to make sure that your remote workforce is actively participating in the business. Most organisations don’t involve remote workers in key decisions. This is a critical mistake.

Remote employees feel left out and disengaged

Every organisation should consider opinions of their remote employees whenever possible. One way to do that is to hold web-based meetings regularly. This will have three major advantages for your business.

The first advantage is that your remote workers will feel that they are fully involved in your business. This will drive up their engagement, motivation levels and loyalty towards the company.

Second, increased participation may help you get useful ideas and suggestions. It is not uncommon for a remote worker to have a broader view of the workings of your organisation. They could provide valuable inputs about your strategy or decision-making.

The third benefit of increased participation is that it helps in team building. Holding regular web meetings will improve communication between remote employees and other team members. This helps them in bonding together and may help your business in realising hidden synergies.

As you can see, increasing the participation of your remote workers could go a long way in ensuring that they are engaged and giving their best.

Setting Goals and Conducting Reviews

Another way to keep your remote employees engaged is to ensure that you are tracking their progress on the job. Companies often make the mistake of ignoring the professional development of their remote employees and remain focused on the office staff.

Remote workers also have development needs. They also need training from time to time. They also need to feel important. Therefore, every employer should focus on their personal and professional development. One way of doing so is to set performance goals for your remote employees. You could set short-term goals, which are tactical, and also long-term goals, which are more strategic. Both these sets of goals will ensure that your remote employees have something to work towards.

Further, goal setting is not the only aspect of engaging your employees. You also need to conduct performance reviews from time to time. These reviews will help your employees in tracking their own progress and also ensure that they keep developing their skills. If a remote worker is lagging the performance targets, then you could always take the help of training sessions and mentoring activities to get him back on track. This is a great way to engage your remote employees, while also making them much more productive.

Choose the Right Platform to Communicate with Remote Team

To engage your remote team, it is vital to choose the right communication platforms. There are various such platforms available in the market. Your business needs to choose the one that fits your needs. You should choose communication platforms that allow you to send documents, make video calls, and share screens. Such multi-dimensional platforms can go a long way in ensuring that your remote workers are always connected with you. Nowadays, most communication platforms also have their own mobile apps. Your remote workers can download the app and stay connected to the rest of the team from anywhere.

Lack of the right communication platform may reduce your team’s output and work quality. This is because remote employees often need detailed instructions about a project. If your communication software allows you to share all details seamlessly, it will make your team more efficient and effective. Choosing the right communication platform may also allow you to keep track of the work you have assigned to each team member, improving the task delegation process.

Assist Remote Employees with Time Management

One of the biggest challenges faced by remote workers is that they may not be able to manage their time well. To avoid this situation, coordinate with them and assist them in managing their time. Remote employees often need somebody to guide and provide them with time estimates so they can plan out their daily schedule.

Another major benefit of helping them with time management is that you will also be able to meet the deadlines set by your clients. This can also help you in improving your client relationships.

An employee time tracking software like HiveDesk  can help you in tracking and monitoring your remote employees’ work. It will also help you in keeping track of their daily work. If you notice a problem with a remote employee’s  output, you can use the screenshots to provide constructive feedback and training. Remote employees also benefit from it as they can see how they spend their time and where they can improve.  Time management is an extremely important aspect of remote working, and you need to take control of it.

Build Relationships with Your Remote Workers

It is easy for an employer or a manager to build a rapport with office workers. This is because they meet daily and have the time to know each other. However, the same is not true with remote workers. This is because employers rarely meet remote workers. Most times, remote employees never meet their managers in person.  What should an employer do to engage remote employees and build better relationship with them?

First, it is extremely important to understand that remote employees are also an important part of your team. If you take an interest in them, you will get to know them better. You will also know the key challenges they face in their day-to-day lives. The best way to do so is to spend a time with them while they are on-boarded. You can schedule audio or video calls during on-boarding to know them better.

Second, building relationships with your remote employees will help you in getting the best out of them. If you invest some time in understanding their situation, it will also help you in understanding their strengths and weaknesses. You could then assign them tasks that are better suited to their strengths.

Third, it is human nature that individuals will go the extra mile for the someone they care about. If your remote workers get a sense of your concern towards them, it will motivate them to outperform for your company. In certain cases, they may even go out of the way to deliver projects on time. To reap such benefits, you need to schedule regular one-on-one audio or video calls with them. This step will go a long way in ensuring the mutual development of your remote employees and the organisation.

Summary

To sum up, engaging your remote employees can help them outperform in their work. This will also ensure that they feel a part of your company and help you in maximizing your profits. Engaged remote employees are happier in their personal and professional lives. To achieve this, you need to use strategies such as increasing their participation via meetings and setting measurable goals.

You also need to follow up on their progress from time to time. This will make them feel that you are genuinely working towards their professional development. You also need to choose the most appropriate communication platform that provides seamless communication and allows you to keep track of the work. Further, it is also vital to assist remote workers in managing their time.

You need to build relationships with your remote workers so they go the extra mile for you. Using strategies covered int his blog will not only help you in engaging your remote workers but will also help you in building a strong team environment.

Bring transparency and accountability.

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