Working home isn’t a new concept but before 2020, it was fairly alien for many employees and employers across almost every industry. Needless to say, two years on from the pandemic (when working from home was at its highest) and people are still getting used to this working style.
If you’ve been offered a remote role or you’re giving hybrid working a go then it’s important to create a routine and setup that meets your needs so you can be as productive as possible. To make working from home a success, you’ll need some basic guidelines and principles.
Let’s quickly cover the matter of working and hiring remotely, then get to 8 dos and don’ts that you should keep in mind to make remote work successful.
Will Remote Work Suit all of Your Employees?
Working remotely is not for everyone, and not everyone is cut out for office jobs. If you are running a fully remote business, hiring candidates who are specifically looking for this type of work may be the best solution. The benefit of remote work is that your employees can be located anywhere in the world. An employer of record provider like Remote can offer an employer of record (EOR) service, which allows you to hire and pay employees from all over the world in order to find the exact right person for the job.
You can help your employees be as productive and happy at home as possible with the right support, tools, and guidance. Although it may take some getting used to, there are numerous advantages to remote work for both your employees and your business, so it’s worth getting it right!
4 Things You Should Do
Let’s start with the things that will improve the way you work from home. If you’ve never worked remotely before and you’re unsure what to try or your current setup just isn’t working, here are 4 very useful tips you can give a go!
Have a Good Work Setup
Everybody’s work setup will be different depending on the type of job you do and the space you have available but there are some general recommendations to consider. Generally speaking, a ‘good’ work setup should have a desk, comfortable chair, and computer in a quiet space where you can concentrate.
Avoid putting your laptop on a coffee table, for example, where you can easily cause back pain and make your job a lot harder. If you’re struggling to find a dedicated space to work at home don’t be afraid to ask your employer for support as many companies will be happy to supply you with the right equipment.
Take Regular Breaks
It’s always important to take breaks away from your screen. When you’re working in an office your day is often broken up by meetings, going over to people’s desks, or simply popping to the kitchen for a coffee but it’s not quite the same at home.
Breaking up the monotony of work with short breaks can prevent procrastination and keep you productive. Why not take a walk around the block? You’ll return to your desk feeling refreshed and ready to continue with the day.
Plan Your Time Carefully
Although working from home comes with its own set of perks you are still doing a job so planning your time carefully is key. If you’re easily distracted then use a task planning tool or your online calendar to plan out your day or the week ahead so you aren’t sitting there not knowing where to start.
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Being able to tick off your tasks is a great way of staying on track. You’d be surprised how quickly the time passes when you’re working at home so you’ll want something to show for it! Use your Friday afternoon to plan for the following week and on Monday you’ll be all set.
Be Present Online
Remote work means video calls, instant messaging platforms and emails are probably your main form of communication with the rest of your team. That’s why being present online is key. Always keep these tabs open so you don’t miss important messages and calls.
It’s also a good idea to update your online status when using instant messaging. For example, change it to ‘on lunch’ or ‘in a meeting’ so your team knows what you’re doing if you’re late to respond. Being completely absent online could arouse suspicion and suggest that you’re not working at all so always stay active.
4 Things You Shouldn’t Do
Now onto the things that could make working from home more difficult. Everyone has days when they aren’t feeling super motivated whether they’re at home or in the office but avoiding these four things will help.
Feel Pressured to Work Extra Hours
Just because you are working from home doesn’t mean that you need to work extra hours. It’s not uncommon for remote employees to feel guilty or a need to work beyond their normal hours to replace the time spent commuting but doing so can result in a poor work-life balance.
This blog from Remote suggests that a healthy work-life balance means being able to effectively do your job while having enough time to do the things you enjoy in your personal time such as socialising, relaxing, or doing the hobbies you love. In fact, Portugal has legally banned employers from calling, texting, messaging, or emailing their staff outside of working hours to reinforce healthier life-work balances. Sometimes you may need to work an extra hour or so to catch up on work but try not to make it a habit if it’s not required.
Sit in Your Pyjamas
The temptation to sit in your pyjamas and work can be hard to say no to but doing so will only put you completely out of work mode. If you’re used to getting up, showered, and dressed in the morning ready for your commute you should try and continue this at home even if you do put on some comfy clothes.
No one is expecting you to wear formal clothes at home but save your pyjamas for bedtime! The way you feel will impact the way you work so if you make the effort to get dressed in proper clothes and feel ready for the day, it’s much easier to get things done rather than feeling sluggish.
Always Keep Your Camera Off During Video Calls
Video calls are an important part of staying in communication with your team or getting in touch with clients so make your presence known. Different businesses have different thoughts on turning your webcam on but as a general rule, it’s best to keep your camera on during internal calls (if everyone else is too) and avoid hiding away during external meetings.
Of course, do what makes you feel most comfortable but sometimes that face-to-face contact can make you feel more connected to the team especially when you’re working from home.
Work Through Your Lunch Hour
Similar to the pressures of working beyond your normal hours, the same can be said for working through your lunch hour. There’s no need to have lunch at your desk or work through your lunch break completely just because you’re at home.
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Taking 30 minutes to an hour for lunch will prevent you from experiencing burnout. It’s important to refuel, rest and have time away from your screen so you can go back to work feeling refocused.
Give our top tips a go and make remote working a more enjoyable and productive experience. With an improved setup, a better work-life balance and mindset, you’ll get a lot more out of working from home no matter what industry you’re in.