You’ve read all the stats about telecommuting. You know that while it’s a crucial component of creating a work-life balance for your workers, allowing them to work from home is an even bigger benefit for you as the boss. But if all of your employees have worked in the office up until now, you may need a little assistance in order to get your program in place. Here’s how to create a work-from-home program within your company.
Trust Your Employees
In theory, you know that allowing your staff to telecommute is a win/win for both the team and the company as a whole. However, it is important to embrace all the elements of managing a distributed team.
For example, you’ll need to accept that your employees may be unavailable at various points in the day as they tend to personal matters (e.g., a kid’s chorus concert, an aging parent’s orthopedic appointment, etc.). After all, that’s the point of allowing your staffers to have a flexible schedule.
So you have to be able to trust your employees that they will get the work done; it may not always be on your schedule, but it will get done.
You know the expression, “Go big or go home.” Well, the same holds true for allowing your staff to work remotely.
Don’t Pick Favorites
If you cherry pick a few employees to telecommute, you’ll create chaos within your company. A better option would be to devise a plan to let your entire team work from home. That way, you’ll avoid the inevitable feelings of favoritism that will come with letting some (and not all) staffers work from their home offices.
It may take longer to implement a department-wide work from home strategy, but it will definitely create a stronger (and happier) workforce.
While you may have some staffers who have experience working from home, others may be new to the telecommuting game. So it’s up to you to let them know what you expect from them.
Schedule Weekly Meetings
You should never assume they already know what to do. While your employees will probably be doing the same job, you may need to tweak it a bit in order to make it work well as they work from home. In order to achieve this, you should create some metrics by which you’ll be measuring their performances—and then share it.
Schedule a meeting to go over what your needs are, and allow your employees to offer their input as well. Employees typically benefit from a clear-cut list of measurable metrics to evaluate their performance, which in turn helps employers evaluate performance.
After you’ve held meetings with your staff and they’ve begun to work from home, you’ll need to check in with them.
Equip Employees With the Right Tools to Work From Home
In order to ensure your employees’ success, you’ll need to equip them with the right tools.
While they most likely have their home offices set up, they will still need a way to communicate well with each other. So make sure they have the proper software and programs in place to be able to share ideas, documents, and even victories with each other.
You may avail some work from home programs which can help facilitate the flow of information—and more importantly, keep your employees connected to each other and the organization, too.