Working remotely has become a fairly utilized concept, especially now during the COVID 19 pandemic. More businesses than not are giving it a go, and it seems to have been successful for many of these businesses. With the current social distancing guidelines still in place, businesses are realizing more and more the value of remote workers.
Having remote workers has been equitably cost saving for employers, as much as it is for the remote workers themselves. Cost savings for businesses has reached an estimated amounts ranging in the billions for employers. Employing remote workers reduces or eliminates overhead costs, including real estate and operating expenses. On average, having full time remote workers saves an average of thousands of dollars annually per employee (Global Workplace Analytics – Costs and Benefits).
The Insights of Remote Work
Sure, remote working sounds beneficial, but is it really all it’s cracked up to be? There are the good points, of not having to rush around in the morning getting ready to go to your place of employment. On a typical work day, you would get yourself showered, dressed, breakfast made and eaten, find your cell phone, lunch and car keys in hand, and you’re ready to beat morning traffic driving to work.
Yes, you know what it takes to be a good employee working physically in the work place. You’ve been doing it for what feels like forever! But, do you know what it takes to be a good remote worker, and what resources are out there to help in accomplishing being that good remote worker you would strive to be?
There are many benefits to working remotely. Although it has been acknowledged that working remotely can be “lonely,” “boring,” or “mundane,” statistically, 98% of current remote workers would prefer to continue to work remotely on a permanent basis. (State of Remote Work 2020)
Qualities That Make a Good Remote Worker
The best remote workers shine above the rest with their dedication and commitment to a job well done, whether it be physically present at their place of employment, or working remotely. As a remote worker, it is recommended to keep your usual morning routine. Keeping your morning routine will help you keep the work mindset.
Then, there are the important traits and skills of being a good remote worker. Those traits and skills are:
- Personal Discipline – This is the ability to be able to stay motivated and focused on working throughout the entire time you are “on the clock.”
- Motivation – This is the ability to be able to keep a clear and positive mindset, and steady strive towards reaching goals and deadlines.
- Organization – This is the ability to keep files, documents, any working materials and responsibilities organized.
- Collaboration Skills – These are distinguished by the ability to share and receive information, and to be able to work well on a team with other remote employees and those in a place of authority.
- Time Management Skills – These are distinguished by the ability to manage time in a remote setting and adhering to scheduled meetings and deadlines.
- Communication Skills – These are distinguished by the ability to be an all-around good communicator. Communication is always key to keeping others informed, and to staying informed yourself.
Available Resources for Remote Workers
By now you’ve probably decided that you’ve got what it takes to be a top of the line, successful remote worker! So, what are your software options? Remote workers need to have suitable equipment to work remotely, such as a laptop or desktop computer, company cell phone, printer, and scanner. These are a few examples of what may be required for a remote worker to perform effectively and maintain productivity. There are software options as well that are beneficial for remote workers. A few examples of software options for remote workers are listed below:
Google Docs – A cloud-based storage solution, allows employees to keep their files and documents in one centralized location, allowing team members access for collaboration.
Zoom – Zoom is a remote video conferencing service that keeps remote employees and employers connected through phone calls, conference rooms and video chat. Whether on location or working remotely, it provides online meetings, cross platform messaging, file sharing and video webinars.
Slack – A tool that provides solutions for communication difficulties with remote workers. Slack allows for real time conversations with employees, it integrates with Google Drive, and directly sends files and chat notifications.
Todoist -Helps employees stay organized, and keeps to-do lists in one place, along with task and deadline reminders to keep employees focused and on point.
What Can Employers do to Keep Remote Workers at their Best?
With the trend of remote workers increasing, a two-year study conducted by Stanford University found increased productivity, higher retention, and less stress to employees who work remotely. The study also found that these employees were less likely to call out sick, and there was a 50% decrease in the turnover rate of remote employees. (https://remote.co/10-stats-about-remote-work/) . That being said, employers have a responsibility to remote workers to keep them engaged and performing at their best, without direct in person supervision.
To help remote workers perform well, employers should establish daily check in times with all of their employees. Daily calls should be scheduled at foreseeable, consistent times. These calls can be one on one, or a team call, depending on the level of collaboration required. Remote workers need to know they have a resource to ask questions, express concerns, and know they will be heard and understood.
Remote work is on the rise, so it’s important to stay focused and to know what it takes to be a good remote worker. Also, it is always beneficial to research and learn about the resources that are available to assist you in being a good remote worker. With the right mindset, motivation, and resources, it’s easy to be not just a good, but a truly successful remote worker!