Metamorphosing into the Era of Remote Working

Metamorphosing into the Era of Remote Working

For the longest time in history, a workstation was referred to as a cubicle space of 6' x 6' or 8' x 12' or as much as the floor area occupied by your office. Then came the pandemic that blew this traditional form of working and forced offices to be set up at home in accordance with the social distancing norms. Work from home as a concept wasn’t born in the pandemic however, the compulsion to implement it drastically sped up the WFH phenomenon globally. 


A report by FYI states that 91% of employees actually prefer working from home. This could have varied reasons ranging from the absence of commutation to and from work, flexible hours of work, or being able to actually see and spend time with family, which was a luxury earlier, thanks to our fast-paced life. 

Even though it may seem like a blessing for employees, it can be quite a challenge for HRs of companies to manage remote teams that are scattered across the city or country. 

The Pandemic Effect:

By definition, a pandemic refers to a problem being faced on a global level. Therefore, the world we see around us has undergone a drastic transition, the effects of which will be seen in the days to come. This is in reference to not just the way we conduct work but also the way we lead life and interact with one another. Hand sanitization and masks are now as essential to us as breathing to survive. 

Additionally, we are surrounded by the fear of being caught in the trap of this virus, making it easier to become anxious and sometimes even frustrated at the inability to step out of our homes. This is then served with a constant flow of negative news, adding to our already existent woes. 

Purely, from the standpoint of work, workforces across the world are affected due to the pandemic with employees facing the brunt. They either have their salaries being reduced to 50% of their incomes while others are having a tough time adjusting to working from home. Flexibility in the working hours also leads to having no fixed hours of work, which can merge the lines between the employees’ personal and professional life.

Roadblocks to Transition:

Shifting the base of workplaces from actual offices to homes of employees brings with a set of challenges that may not have been faced by businesses as yet. Since the onset of the pandemic was a sudden change to the otherwise routine work life, companies are befuddled and it thus results in experiencing certain roadblocks along the way.


  • Project Management

Managing a remote team is the biggest challenge that businesses face. Without a physical presence, communication can also result in misunderstandings, making work processes slower than they usually would have under normal circumstances. Even so, project managers or team leaders are responsible for the fulfilment of tasks and deliverance of projects on time. By making use of remote management softwares, managers can delegate tasks and keep in touch with the progress being made by the employees. This helps achieve tasks and fulfilment of projects on time. 

  • Keeping productivity in check 

Working in an environment that is fueled by an atmosphere of people towards the same goal can be exhilarating. In contrast, working from home means that one must manage both work and home at the same time, which is double the pressure than most employees face on normal workdays. Amidst all of this, being productive to fulfil daily tasks can be daunting, to say the least. Moreover, employees may not even feel as productive working from home since the atmosphere is one of comfort. 

  • Glitches in Collaborations 

Collaborating on a project from various locations of the city can cause unexpected challenges

that may not have been considered earlier. A scattered team is more challenging to work with, compared to just walking over to their cubicle or cabin in case of any query, request, or simply conducting meetings when required throughout the day. All of this results in delivering work late and at times of poor quality. 

  • Relaunch of HR focus areas

Since offices are transitioning to be set up in the personal space of employees, HR’s too need to renew the ways they look out for their workforce. 

  • Engagement Programs

Even though majority of the workforce may prefer working from home, there are some that may find it difficult to cope with it. In such situations, it is best that HRs design plans, webinar sessions, and engagement ideas that keep the employees motivated towards work. At times, creating engagement sessions that are for fun and completely unrelated to work may also do the trick since it helps them relax, which can be rejuvenating. 

  • Check-in meetings

With remote working, fixed working time is no longer a possibility. Being available for work at all times can be stressful for employees. Therefore, checking up on your employees even for 5 minutes to understand their state of mind can make them feel lighter and appreciated at work. Remote working is more stressful for the mind than the body, and this can cause even more of a hassle than having to travel to work. 

  • Reworked HR policies 

Many offices are now deciding to move to a permanent state of work from home, even as the pandemic is brought under control. When this situation is put into motion, HRs may have to rework their policies regarding employee attendance, leave status, and the ways to log in their working hours. The work from home scenario is quite different from working in the office, therefore HRs must keep all of these aspects in mind while redrafting the HR policies. 

  • Best Practices to Adopt

As much as remote working can be a challenge of sorts, digitalization has eased out the creases that may occur when people work from different locations at the same time. With various applications and software, remote working is certainly manageable. Some of the best practices that you can undertake are as below: 

  • Remote Management Software

HRs across businesses must inculcate HRMS software for Remote Employee Management. This software helps supervise the work done by employees ranging from timesheet management to track an employee’s daily tasks to their online attendance management. 

  • HR Platform for Remote Teams

Working remotely means that HRs need to find methods through which they can track the work done by the employees. This can be solved with the help of managing tasks through various applications that are designed to not let productivity down in such scenarios. Some of these being Asana, ProofHub, or HiveDesk. These applications help you assign tasks and keep a check on the kind of work being done by each of your team members so that you are on top of the tasks under progress or being completed by your team. 

  • Providing teams with equipment 

An employee working from home needs adequate tech to function smoothly and efficiently just as they did at work. In order to do this, HRs and businesses need to help employees set up their home office and provide whatever help may be required to make that easier. Providing the right technology is one part of that equation. If possible, provide your remote working staff with a tablet or smartphone to remain connected.

Conclusion 

According to a report by Upwork states that companies have accepted and are making amendments for the adoption of remote working amid COVID-19 scenario. This is likely to be the norm even for the future as 32% of the managers, according to the report, have noticed an increase in the level of productivity within their employees. It is also believed that this trend may be followed since the future would involve Gen Z as part of the workforce who thrive on a digital field and are comfortable to work from anywhere at any time.