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Top Tips for Staying Productive when Remote Working

As the saying goes:

Work isn’t a place you go, it’s a thing you do.

There has been a trend, for several years, of more staff working away from the office.  The coronavirus outbreak has accelerated this change in working practice around the world as companies help to protect their staff from exposure.

As your organisation transitions to a more fluid approach to the workplace and adopts remote working, it is essential that productivity levels are maintained.

At igroup, our success is based on flexibility. Our team are encouraged to work remotely to ensure that they deliver the best possible outcomes for clients wherever they are.  If you’re currently in the process of moving to remote working and are worried about the impact it might have on operations, read our tips to find out how we use structure, technology and communication to stay effective.

Have a Workspace

Modern offices are ergonomic and designed to keep staff productive.  When working away from business premises it’s essential to have a space that’s free from distractions and offers the amenities you need to get things done.

A comfortable desk in a quiet area where you can work uninterrupted is essential.  It might be tempting to work from a coffee shop for a change of scene, but this can be a bad idea – lots of people moving around you are distracting and unreliable wi-fi connections can interrupt workflow.  It is also disruptive to have background noise on any calls.

Keep an At-Work Mentality

If you’re used to “going to work” every day, then you’ll have a routine that’s structured around that.  Many people find it really useful to retain elements of that routine.

Just because you no longer have to commute to an office, try to stick to the same morning routine – get up at your usual hour, and wear office attire (this is particularly important if you’re still going to have meetings, even if they’re as video calls).

One great tip if you’re remote working is to go for a half hour walk before you start your day.  This helps to create a distinction between being “at home” and being “at work”.  It will also help to keep you fit!

Structure Your Work

On any given day it’s important to know what you’re going to get done.  Setting a to do list for the day is helpful.  It’s satisfying to cross things off as they’re completed and helps to keep you motivated.

A morning call with your team and an afternoon round-up where you discuss your plans for the day and catch up on work completed is a great way of ensuring that the usual workload is being met and that any projects you’re working on stay on track.

Take Breaks

Very few people maintain 100% focus over a full day, and while working at home can be less distracting than the office, it’s still a good idea to take regular breaks to recharge your energy and regain your focus. 

Remote working shouldn’t be an excuse to slack off and an unreasonable amount of time unavailable isn’t productive, but you should still take time away from a screen to rest your eyes and grab a coffee.

Supporting your colleagues when working remotely is important – agree a break schedule with your team so that phone lines are covered properly, and work can continue.

Be Accountable

The most important aspect of managing a remote workforce is trust and accountability. 

One of the most effective ways of keeping productivity levels high is with a buddy system where staff pair up and keep each other motivated.  This isn’t a case of surveillance, rather support whereby staff keep each other accountable and provide cover if one is on a break.

Use the Right Technology

If you’re working remotely, it’s essential that you’re able to access all the information that you need to get your job done.  A solid internet connection is essential – if your remote working space doesn’t have one, you might need to resort to using a hotspot from your phone.

In terms of software, an integrated productivity suite like Office 365 that includes collaborative tools is increasingly important.  A fully developed Intranet and document management solution supported with services like Teams that help staff communicate through video, voice and chat means that work can continue remotely without interruption to document access or colleague support.

Want to find out more?

If your business is in the process of transitioning to a remote working system, please contact igroup on 0203 697 0302 and we can help you ensure that your systems are sufficient.

Call now on 0203 697 0302 to speak to a member of our team

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