Getting employees off on the right foot is essential to their success while working from home. As an employer, you must choose employees who are likely to thrive in a remote setting – either from your existing staff or by recruiting new talent to join your team. Before their first day of remote work, be sure they have the equipment and support they need.
Check that employees have what they need at home. If they were in the office, you would make sure they had the technology, supplies, and ergonomic set-up required to perform their job effectively. If they give frequent presentations, they may need specialized equipment. Too often, employers with remote employees assume employees will have adequate equipment at home. If you use technology to measure biometrics or track keystrokes, be sure you are compliant with federal, state, and local regulations.
Whether you are hiring new people, bringing on temporary employees to fill the gap, or shifting in-house employees to remote work, there should be a consistent onboarding program. It will help smooth the employees’ way into this new experience. The process should include your expectations of them, how to use any required equipment, who they report to and how often they will be expected to check-in. Don’t underestimate the importance of communicating your company culture. Introduce them to as many team members as possible to make them feel welcome. Go over what hours they will be expected to work and how to track and account for their time. Provide a list of people who they should contact if they have questions or technical problems.
Some companies’ work product is not meant to be seen by non-employees. Put controls in place for the security of confidential materials. Inform employees if they are not permitted to share equipment with any family members or housemates or whether they must password protect devices used for work. Employees must also know the importance of keeping their systems secure by conforming to company policies regarding anti-virus software, malware prevention, and Single Sign-On (SSO) strategies.
Remote work can blur the lines between work and home. Employees can believe they are doing the right thing by putting in extra time – answering emails after the kids are in bed, working on the weekends, etc. Well-meaning employees can put you in a bind. Provide a clear policy about tracking their working time that complies with state and federal laws in your area. If permitted in your state, have employees sign off on a document detailing your expectations. Update your expense policy if it is different from working on-site.
Be sure that employees understand your expectations as far as how and when they work. If you want them to work specific hours or reach specific goals, let them know. If you expect them to communicate regularly or on a schedule, make that clear. Guide by providing templates or self-monitoring tools. Remote work is here to stay, and how the experience starts can set the tone for the company and the employee. If you want your remote workers to stay with the company and be engaged and productive, it’s worth the time you put in upfront to ensure their success.
PrideStaff is here to help.
Our new whitepaper, The Remote Work Experience: What Employees Want You to Know, will help you recruit, train, and manage remote workers effectively. Download your free copy today!
Laying the proper groundwork and recruiting the right people in the first place can ensure your team is set up for success. Our national staffing firm can help you find the right talent and help you get them off to the right start. Contact your local PrideStaff office today to start a conversation.