Make your employees happy with a remote work policy and watch your business grow
With the economy still a roller coaster and small businesses trying to do more with less, one way to offer your employees a valuable perk without breaking the bank is by allowing them to work remotely. Working from home is considered a valuable perk by 80 percent of employees, according to statistics cited by the Telework Research Network; in fact,36 percent of people say they’d rather work from home than get a pay raise. For businesses, remote work has been proven to cut costs, improve productivity and help retain employees.
If you’re considering remote work for your business, here are some questions to answer:
Who can work from home?You don’t have to offer everyone on staff the option, but you can’t let one member of your sales force work from home and not the others.
Will employees have a set work-at-home day or will it be flexible? How far in advance will remote working days be scheduled? Some companies have everyone work from home one day a week, which cuts down on utility costs at the office.
How will you stay in touch?The basics still work here: instant messaging, email and phone are among your best options. If employees need to interact with groups, consider conferencing tools like GoToMeeting. Project management and collaboration tools like Basecampcan help keep everyone on your team on track no matter where they are.
What tools will you provide?These days, most employees can use their own computers to work from home, but if your work is sensitive, or you want to make sure the computer is strictly to be used for work, you should provide laptops, smartphones and other tools. Also consider software needs and capabilities; you’ll need to be sure everyone is compatible both in and out of the office.
How will remote workers access information?Using cloud storage solutions like Egnytecan simplify this by enabling your team to access information wherever they are.
How will you ensure data security and how will remote workers back up their information? You need to ensure the same level of security both in and out of the office to protect sensitive company and customer information.
How will you measure results?Many bosses worry that remote employees are goofing off. Create measurements—such as the number of jobs completed, calls made or customers served—and track them to ensure employees are being productive.