Answer from Sarah, PHR, SHRM-CP:
Managing remote employees can certainly be a challenge. Here are some of the practices we recommend:
Set measurable goals around quality of work. Whether employees get their work done to your satisfaction is more important to your bottom line than whether they’re always at their workstation. Make all the resources necessary for employees to do their jobs remotely easily available. These may include phones, computers, extra monitors, video conferencing software, and instant messaging apps. If you need employees to have fast internet speeds, consider subsidizing the necessary costs.
Create and communicate a work-from-home policy so everyone knows what’s expected of them.
Talk regularly with employees about what’s working well and not-so-well. Encourage them to reach out to HR or a manager if remote work is causing any difficulties or challenges.
Hold all meetings virtually, even if some people are working in a company office, so everyone is equally able to participate. This means having employees who are in the workplace login from their individual computers and not be in the same room as their other in-office colleagues during the meeting.
Promote a good work-life balance by making sure remote employees know when their workday ends. It’s very easy for employees working at home to spend more time working than they would in an office environment.
Sarah has extensive Human Resources experience in the legal, software, security and property preservation industries. She has a Business Communications degree from Villa Julie College (now Stevenson University) and a master’s certificate in Human Resources Management and a Strategic Organizational Leadership certification from Villa Nova University. Sarah is also a member of the National Society of Human Resources Management and has managed the HR function for small startup companies to mid-sized/large organizations.