There is no denying that the disruptive events of the last two years, with distancing restrictions being enforced due to the coronavirus pandemic, have pushed individuals to change many aspects of their lives.
This applies to businesses as well and the working practices they employ. Nowadays, there is a new normal – complete remote working or the hybrid paradigm combining online with offline. These working practices have started as a way for companies to adapt to pandemic restrictions but have now become a standard way of conducting business, as everyone started to see the advantages.
This being said, it is of the utmost importance for start-ups to offer flexibility to their employees and already established companies to remain relevant in this day and age while providing a work environment that is adaptable and flexible. Otherwise, you risk losing talent who prefers working remotely either completely or from time to time.
With the help of technology, these new working practices are not only possible but can also boost productivity and motivation among most employees. Indeed, to accomplish this, businesses must have a clear strategy, utilise digital tools and prioritise open communication. Essentially, for companies and employees to be able to perform well while working remotely or using the hybrid paradigm, there is a need for a culture of adaptability and flexibility embedded at the core. Only this way can you find a balance when it comes to doing business activities virtually.
Having said this, it is interesting to see how companies can effectively make this transition that can be beneficial for both the business and their workers.
So, how have companies and employees adapted to these new working practices, and how can they maintain productivity remotely to thrive?
Prioritising Open Communication with Digital Tools
One thing is sure – without open and transparent communication, it is highly unlikely for your business to perform well while using new working practices incorporating remote work. The only way of accomplishing this is by making use of efficient digital tools that allow for video conferencing or instant messaging in real time. Therefore, for companies to retain and boost productivity, it is of the utmost importance to prioritise this aspect first and foremost.
It can be a challenge to boost teamwork and maintain the overall productivity of the business when you are adopting remote working practices. But with the right tools, this can be achievable. So, review the communication tools you used to utilise only when necessary or research new fast ones that can provide seamless communication. This includes being able to make video conference calls and use chat features effectively between team members.
Adopt A Forward-Thinking Approach and Embrace Innovation
Truth be told, innovation nowadays should lie at the core of a company, regardless of the industry and the focus of the business. With technologies rapidly evolving and emerging, it is of the utmost importance to keep up with these changes and adopt a forward-thinking approach when it comes to doing business. Unpredictability and uncertainty can be worrying, but being adaptable and open-minded to change can help you survive in the business world. Once you do this, you will soon be able to thrive.
Therefore, it is vital to embrace innovation. Only this way can you adapt and perform well while working remotely or employing a combination of online and offline working practices. Innovative strategies can mean anything from using digital technologies to adopting a thinking-outside-the-box approach.
Listen To Your Employees’ Needs and Remain Flexible
One way that companies have managed to adapt to new working practices is by listening to their employees’ needs. A survey regarding the future of hybrid working has revealed that 72% of executives see the flexibility of remote or hybrid working as essential and would consider changing companies where this benefit is offered if their current role was not flexible enough.
Considering this, there is no doubt that it is crucial to listen to your employees’ needs. Because a growing number of them prefer these new working practices, providing flexibility while remaining flexible yourself as a business owner has become a must.
Looking at other companies that have managed to adapt effectively to this lasting trend, there are many ways in which you can adopt remote or hybrid practices that benefit the business and the employees. For example, an activity-based approach focuses on the activity and performance of a company’s talent rather than the location from where it is done.
Adopt A Working Practice That Fits Your Business Needs
Another noteworthy mention when considering the implementation of remote working practices is the fact that you need to take into consideration your business needs. Why would you implement a hybrid approach if the business you conduct can be entirely done remotely and you can hire candidates from various countries?
Hence, it is necessary to have a clear idea of the needs of your companies and whether it is beneficial to combine online with offline work. If specific meetings are better held in a physical space, you shouldn’t promote complete flexibility across all departments. This can also create confusion among employees if they are unsure when they can work from home and when it is required to come to the office. This being said, you should ask yourself which model your business fits best – complete remote working or the hybrid paradigm.
Facilitate The Process of Remote Working
Companies that have been successful at adapting to remote or hybrid working have been mindful of the fact that this process needs to be facilitated for their employees. Indeed, depending on the company’s budget, you may not be able to provide equipment to all employees who work remotely from the beginning. So, this aspect should be carefully planned when deciding to become a flexible company in line with employees and industry demands.
This being said, it is vital to support your employees in setting up a proper remote workspace with essential equipment such as laptops. It may even be necessary to provide a high-quality desk chair that benefits posture when working long hours. Essentially, the features and tools you would offer in an office space should be provided even if employees work remotely. Indeed, this is a business expense, but don’t overlook the fact that you will be able to save a significant amount of business finances as you don’t have to pay rent for an office.