Tips to Working from Home Efficiently

Managing Teams Remotely

Dileepa Ameresekere

With the outbreak of COVID-19, many organisations have opted to allow their staff to work from home. This can be an easy transition or difficult challenge depending on the type of work your business does and also based on the state of your IT infrastructure.


Technology

Moving your infrastructure to the cloud (i.e online hosted solutions) has many advantages and probably the most important is that your entire workforce becomes agile and is able to work from any location. Some of my clients have already migrated to cloud solutions and that is paying dividends because they were very quickly able to mobilize their staff to work from home without extra IT effort.

Having your IT stack (emails, file server, user account management, chat and collaboration) hosted can reduce your overall IT costs too as you don't have to worry about depreciating hardware and maintenance costs like keeping software up to date, backups and other tasks you would have to get a traditional system administrator to do on a daily basis.


Collaboration

Online platforms are build for collaboration. Of course nothing can beat face to face however the way of the future is working online so the sooner you can start testing different platforms until you find one that works for your organisation the better it will be. Microsoft Office 365 and Google's G-Suite are fantastic solutions for online collaboration and come with everything you need including video conferencing.


Training

Online platforms like Office 365 and G-Suite are designed to be easy to use and pickup though if you want to have your staff trained then there are build it help and online videos to get you started. If you are new to these platforms then have a watch of some You-tube videos on either platform to see which platform might work best for your organisation. If you need assistance with training or need advice on which platform to choose then please contact us and we are ready to assist.

No doubt some organisations that have shifted to online solutions will seriously consider remaining post COVID-19 and that will be fine. The more you can have your staff trained and leverage the different features of online collaboration platforms your organisation will be the better for it.


Accountability

Managers may wonder if their staff are being productive from home and the truth is that in most cases staff working from home won't be as productive as being co-located. However, the most important thing is to make sure your staff are safe and with transmission rates increasing around the world, having your staff working from home and sticking to strict social distancing is really important.

If your organisation has adopted an agile methodology then teams can still have virtual stand-ups and keep up to date on what everyone is doing and what they plan to work on. However, if your organisation is new to agile or have not adopted something like this then feel free to contact us to find out more about finding a good agile coach for your organisation.


Socialise

Rules around mandatory social distancing has very negative impacts to our mental health because we don't normally isolate ourselves for weeks with no physical human interaction so in these unprecedented times it is difficult to adjust our minds so quickly to the new temporary way of life. Socialising online is very important and everyone needs to make extra effort to keep in touch and check up on each other. There are many video platforms available including WhatsApp, Zoom, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Teams etc to chose from.


If any of what you have read interests you or you would like to find out more then feel free to contact us and we would be delighted to assist where we can. We also have experience migrating our clients onto Microsoft Office 365 and Google G-Suite so if either platform interests you or if you would like to find out more about which platform would best suite your needs we can assist.