With more and more companies adopting work-from-anywhere policies, HR practitioners need to develop new skills to manage and engage employees in a variety of locations. Whether your company just started letting employees work offsite or has had a dispersed workforce for years now, there’s always more to learn.
This week’s 5 for Friday is full of articles to help HR with managing remote workers.
- HR Technology and the Remote Worker. Tribe HR: “With the growth of the knowledge economy, technology has become an enabler to the growing phenomenon of telecommuters or remote workers. From electronic time cards to video conferencing and GoogleDocs, the technological tools for connecting with and managing employees in the field abound. Creating effective virtual teams, however, involves a lot more than providing cool technologies and a good broadband connection. Remote workers face a number of challenges as do the companies that employ them. Both structured and ad hoc communication with remote employees, for example, becomes critical.”
- The Benefits and Challenges of Remote Teams. Econsultancy: “The biggest benefit of remote working is the very fact that employees like it. Remote working can be a great way to attract digital workers in a competitive market, as well as increase retention and improve staff morale. The benefits in terms of childcare also helps attract more experienced members of staff who have family commitments, and women who often bear the brunt of juggling work and family. Reducing commuting also puts more money in employees’ pockets, effectively increasing their take home pay. This makes them more expensive to other companies who may seek to headhunt them without offering remote working.”
- Working Remotely Can Open Up Your Business, But Beware Of These Challenges (VIDEO(. The Huffington Post: “It’s undeniable that working remotely offers employees more freedom, but does the flexibility make it harder to strike a successful work-life balance? On a recent HuffPost Live segment, host Nancy Redd asked remote workers how they bring the office into their living space without letting work take over their lives. Anne Hornyak, an account executive at Sparkloft Media, said it took some time before she realized she was working too much and needed to allow time away from her home office. ‘I’ve learned to close the laptop, get to a living area of the house instead of the working area, just to dissociate myself from that,” Hornyak said.’”
- Remote HR: How to Manage Employees Across the Country. Resource Nation: “Set specific job requirements. That doesn’t mean micromanage your remote employees. Instead, you need to communicate specific goals and work criteria that will meet your company’s long-term goals. For jobs that are more flexible, you can set deadlines and checkpoints to ensure jobs are being completed. For production-based employees, let them know you expect to see outlined production numbers regularly.”
- How to Keep an Eye on Employees Working Remotely. Philadelphia Business Journal: “Telecommuting employees thrive in any work environment when two of their most important needs are met. First, they need to feel as if they are valued and respected within their organization. Second, they excel when management invests in them to help in the trajectory of their career. Both of these needs can be accomplished by offering coaching for all employees as well as mentoring services. You’ll be investing in your employees and, in turn, they will be more invested in your organization and its success.”