Remote work has become de rigueur in the past year. That’s because of a pandemic that has wreaked havoc on the rest of the world. To curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus, businesses have been advised to either stop their operations or send their employees home. Of course, the latter proved to be the more practical option. After all, no business can survive after a prolonged interruption in operation.
The whole situation became a blessing in disguise for most employees. If we are to consider relevant statistics, they show that workers prefer WFH arrangements. In a survey conducted by Growmotely, findings revealed that 74 percent of respondents expect WFH to become the normal state of employment. Those who don’t want to go back to the office account for 97 percent of surveyed professionals. And 61 percent of employees prefer to do their jobs remotely.
While remote work seems to be favored by employees, managers have to contend with the challenges of such an arrangement. Thankfully some technologies provide a solution to these challenges.
A fast and reliable network is essential to deliver remote work. This is where 5G cell networks come in. This year, these networks are rolled out in more areas. Soon 5G will have enough coverage to serve as the main source of people’s internet connection. It promises speeds 100 percent faster than 4G.
While it won’t be cheap to provide all employees with 5G connections, there’s a way to strategize its use without eating into your business funds. For example, you can beta test by providing 5G connectivity to your key employees. That way critical video conferences won’t be derailed by faulty connections.
Cloud computing has become the go-to information-sharing technology for companies regardless of size and industry. That’s for obvious reasons. For starters, it provides quick and safe access to relevant data. All members of the organization, in or out of the office, get to deliver their job responsibilities seamlessly.
Leading cloud solutions include Microsoft Office 365. It incorporates IT solutions, server maintenance, and security infrastructure, among others, into one robust system.
IM and VR communication
Thanks to video conferencing software like Zoom, teams working from different places can collaborate. The same goes for instant messaging apps like Slack. These technologies make it easy for organizations to be on the same page even if team members are not in the same location.
Soon will be seeing more VR communication applied to business operations. As of this writing, VR communication tools are still in the beta phase. But we can expect them to be made available to the larger market in no time. If you’re already satisfied with Zoom meetings, imagine how VR communication would feel like.
Remote training tools
This is one of the most pressing challenges faced by managers and HR teams amid the pandemic. Onboarding new employees used to require physical interaction. But that’s out of the question in the past year or so. Thankfully, remote training tools came to the rescue.
Webinar apps such as BigMarker make information-sharing convenient by allowing organizations to record training sessions and modules. Meanwhile, training tools like Tuple make it possible to demonstrate systems without requiring participants to be physically present.
Employee monitoring software
You pay your employees well. You provide them everything the law requires and more. It only follows that you demand the utmost reliability and competency. However, with remote work, it’s a challenge to assess how employees use office hours.
This is where employee monitoring software comes in. These subscription-based tools allow you to track what your employees are up to from the time they clock in. For example, some capture scheduled screenshots. Those let you see whether your employees are not wasting their 9 to 5 on Facebook or Twitter. If you’re planning to implement remote employee monitoring, make sure to consult with all stakeholders in your organization first.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caught us all off guard. And we had to be quick on our toes. We had to adapt to the situation with creativity. Remote work is one way we’ve adapted to living under a pandemic. What was once unimaginable for businesses became the norm. And it’s safe to say that even after the pandemic is officially over, remote work will be here to stay.
Managers should look at this as an opportunity instead of a hindrance. Instead of stressing over not seeing employees’ every move within office hours, you can rely on technology to ensure everyone’s doing the work they are paid to do.