The news is pouring in from all over the world. There are more cases, more deaths, and more closures every day. As of the time of writing this article, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has ripped through 165 countries and all 50 states. Almost 200,000 people have been infected, and almost 8,000 have, tragically, lost their lives.
As a result of the aggressiveness of this virus, businesses all over the world have sent their workers home to try and stay healthy while remaining productive. The hope is that by biting the bullet now and taking these drastic measures as early as possible, we can avoid a far worse sweep of the virus in the near future.
This is, of course, changing the way the average worker goes about his or her day. Instead of grinding gears over a long commute, fighting for fridge space in the break room, and sitting through dull meetings, they are getting started with their work while still in their PJs, enjoying a slow breakfast, and reading the emails that those meetings were converted to.
Since working from home is a different environment, it requires a different set of methods in order to maximize one’s workflow efficiency. Let’s walk through some tips for getting your team through this outbreak in the most effective manner possible.
One of the first things to go out the window during a drastic workflow change is accountability. This is especially the case when your whole team is going to be working from home. When you can’t just waltz to someone’s office to check on their progress or have quick meetings to measure project success, it’s easy for some people to lose that sense of responsibility that holds a team together.
One of the best ways to maintain accountability is to have quantifiable goals against which your team can be measured. Simply having numbers to hit is a good way to get people to stay on task.
Set a Schedule and Stick to it
Your biggest enemy when it comes to working from home is timing. When faced with the freedom that comes with not having to come into the office, a team can sometimes begin to let their personal plans bleed into their work time. You need to ensure that your team is working when they say they will be and that they aren’t neglecting work time by getting distracted or making plans for the middle of the workday.
There is no shortage of tech that can help with this, from online time trackers to scheduling platforms. Utilizing these programs can lock your schedule down and keep it from being manipulated. We’ll touch more on work-from-home tech later on.
Since many schools are out, many people have no choice but to share their home workspace with their kids. While this can certainly be disruptive, particularly on conference calls or video chats, it’s not like it’s their fault. Be patient, delegate work accordingly, and do what you can to work around these disruptions, rather than letting them cause conflict and slow down productivity.
Communication is Key
Communication is one of the most important aspects of business. When your team is working from home, your biggest communication asset (chatting face-to-face) is completely erased.
Your main goal on the first day of working from home should be to bring communication back up to par with what your team needs in order to work effectively. There are a number of ways to do this. The best software that we have found to foster communication between your workers is Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams allows for just about anything your team needs in order to work together remotely. Video calls, video conferences, instant messaging and even file sharing occurs with ease in a streamlined manner. Additionally, using Office 365 allows for collaboration and work sharing that is unmatched by any other software. There’s a reason these are two of the most popular softwares on the planet.
Get Your Tech Up and Running
In 1918, the world was struck by the Spanish Flu. It decimated the European population to the tune of about 50 million, causing worldwide panic and, ultimately, economic strain which took the world decades to recover from. Some people have tried to compare that pandemic to the current coronavirus.
Of course, the world is a slightly different place now than it was in 1918. For example, we now have running water almost everywhere, soap that would shock an early 20th century doctor, and medicine that would be declared witchcraft by the huddled masses. We also have a far more white-collar world now, which means that, through the use of technology, we can continue doing our work, providing for our families, and contributing to the world economy.
Unfortunately, because of the speed and tenacity with which COVID-19 struck, many businesses were not prepared for a purely work-from-home operation. Businesses everywhere are looking for help in getting migrated onto remote softwares and regaining some sense of productivity. ZAACT is one of the key players in this arena. We give your business the training, tools, and coordination it needs to maintain workflow in these troubling times by helping you migrate your company to a work-from-home solution, such as Microsoft Teams and Microsoft Office 365.
These tools are invaluable when it comes to a distributed team. And with ZAACT’s help, migration to these tools is easier than ever. Get started by contacting us to get a free consultation.