There are more and more remote workers as flexible working becomes the norm for many employees. Learn the challenges of engaging employees who work from home in 2014.
Remote Workers Employee Engagement Strategies
There are lots of different types of flexible working for employers to consider. Yet, this is becoming a growing trend in employment.
Office Angels sees remote workers in particular becoming part of the everyday by 2036. This is due to a growing need for autonomy from workers and cost savings for employers.
The Telegraph even reported that those who work from home are more productive. There are, however, significant challenges in employee engagement. Here are the top three and how to tackle them.
Microsoft for Work argues that remote workers suit organisations whose managers don’t micromanage. Moreover, the work that does not require significant face-to-face or in-office time is preferable.
New technologies allow greater ease for remote working but employers need to think honestly whether it will work for them. It’s about a balance between company and employee needs alongside costs and practicalities.
If employees are constantly commuting to the office for an hour or being questioned on every decision this will make flexible working less engaging and more stressful for staff.
Therefore, organisations and employees need to first come up with a plan for how often staff need to be in-house. Whether this is a yearly meeting, monthly, bi-weekly or three days a week.
They then need to agree on their communications tool. This may include, e-mails, Skype, IMs and social media. This will give staff the work / life balance they want whilst ensuring that standards of work are maintained.
Using Existing Employee Engagement Strategies
A call to say “thank you” or “good work”, vouchers for online or sent via snail mail and discounts can go a long way even long distance. Whilst, offering something a little different or extra can increase staff retention as they may not get the same treatment elsewhere.
Remote workers will particularly appreciate discounts on new technologies, for example. This can improve their working environment and improve productivity.
It can be difficult to encourage staff motivation and team building with regards to remote workers. That’s why when employees are in-house it’s important to create an engaging and productive environment.
There are many ways to motivate staff at work and break the ice though this is not always possible with overseas workers. Therefore, other technologies can be used in its stead.
Internal social media like Yammer are useful but even mailing lists can be put to good use. You can reward teams by congratulating them in your mailing list. Similarly, you can celebrate the work anniversaries of teams and individuals to help them feel valued.
To find out the specific needs of remote workers for any organisation online employee engagement surveys can help create staff engagement initiatives.
(Main image from Lander Consultancy)