How Can Companies Prepare Workers to Work from Home?

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For many people around the world, working from home sounds like a fun and adventurous experience with no rules and no one to answer to at home. It means waking up late, watching movies, and working in their pajamas—no pressure!

Unfortunately, the harsh reality is that that couldn’t be further from the truth. Working from home requires a higher level of discipline and responsibility to achieve the same results as those going to work. 

The Covid-19 global pandemic has necessitated employers to turn to work from home business models in a bid to stop the spread of the virus. Large corporations were among the first to make that move. A recent survey showed that more companies are considering the work from home route in the coming days, especially with a steady rise in the number of Covid-19 infections. 

However, reports show that majority of workers were not adequately prepared for the switch. Statistics record unprecedented low levels of productivity. According to economist Nicholas Bloom, the shift to work from home has caused a global slump in productivity hence threatening the global economy. 

One might attribute this to the culture of supervision in the workplace. With limited supervision, fewer workers have the discipline to meet targets and carry out their day-to-day duties.

So how can companies prepare their workers for the new work model?

  1. Policies play a crucial role in dictating the behaviour of employees. A thorough breakdown of policies regarding the new system is essential before sending people to work from home. Staff must have a clear understanding of the expectation and ground rules. For instance, what are the working hours? Does the company permit the use of public Wi-Fi for data security? What equipment is critical to the job?
  2. Companies should also invest in e-commerce solutions to help in easing their transition to online business. These can include tools such as Simple SMS for bulk messaging and SMS campaigns, which can help increase revenue for companies or Simple PABX call center solution, which enables companies to manage communication both within and outside the organization.
  3. Training is critical for a healthy transition for workers. Companies should prepare training sessions to help employees transition smoothly to the work from home model. Such training includes orientation to reliable online working modules and software. For instance, the company can train workers on how to use the new software or products implemented in the modern working system.
  4. As mentioned earlier, a lack of supervision has resulted in low productivity worldwide. Companies can use a wide range of tools to help their workers improve their productivity when working from home without supervision. These include the use of deadlines and incentives. Having deadlines for specific tasks helps keep workers on track regardless of their working situation. On the other hand, incentives can increase motivation. Depending on the nature of the job, different incentives such as bonuses can motivate employees even when working from home. Employers can, therefore, use reasonable deadlines and incentives to ensure that workers meet the company's objectives.

The shift to working from home is gradually becoming the new normal and seems to stay here. Companies, therefore, need now more than ever to find ways to help increase productivity while keeping their workers safe.




By Christine Njoki - Published 3rd Jun 2020, 04:22pm

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