Nowadays, remote workers are a greater part of organizational make-up than at any time in history. While this move is one that suits the busy lifestyles and the capricious nature of today’s workforce, a State of the Digital Workspace report from Igloo in 2009, demonstrates the real challenges associated with engaging remote workers.
According to the report, 70% of remote employees feel left out of the workplace.
This sense of isolation can be detrimental not just to productivity and the quality of their work, but also a worker’s mental health. Needless to say, this can lead to one, big HR nightmare: Rising attrition rates as a result of dissatisfied employees.
In our post, this week, we dive into this all-important topic and help you identify a few simple and effective methods of engaging remote workers. Good news – they’re easier than you think!
Any modern workspace that employs remote workers needs to establish open and clear lines of communication. While frequent video and audio calls are a must – for weekly or daily check-ins, depending on your requirements – chat programs are a handy way of staying in touch on a daily basis.
By being easily accessible to these types of employees, you give them a sense of connectedness and security that’s important to keep them engaged. Many applications like Slack and Hangouts are a great way to bring remote teams together and ensure that everyone is on the same page.
For workers in different time zones, make sure there’s always someone ready to provide them with support if they need it. While remote workers may not be physically present, they’re equally important to the workplace as much as any other employee.
As we move towards the #FutureOfWork at full speed, onboarding is becoming more of a priority for employers. These help individuals acclimatize to the work environment, their colleagues, and the nature of their work, itself.
By making these initial activities memorable and interactive, you instill important ideas and values in your employees. Moreover, onboarding is a great way of engaging remote workers because it helps them feel like an important part of your company.
Another way to make sure that remote workers feel like they’re an important part of your company is to entrust them with real responsibilities.
This can be a scary process, especially if your company depends on deliverables from your team to get the rest of your operations moving.
If you plan this process properly, however, you can identify which of your remote workers are most suitable for greater responsibility and have a plan in place to ensure that there are sufficient checks and balances to ensure that things don’t go awry.
Another way to make sure you’re engaging your remote workers is to personalize your management to a style they respond to.
With remote workers, every word you communicate and any decision you take can’t be wasted. By understanding what their behavioral styles and attitudes are, specifically with regard to the workplace, you will know what to say and what to do to get the results you want.
The question then is, how can this be done?
Even with employees who are physically present, understanding them at this level isn’t easy. What you need is a workplace psychometric test that dives into a range of DNA behaviors that yield personalized insights on each employee.
With these insights, you understand what individual employees’ communication styles are, their fears, interests, and needs in the workplace. Using these, tailor how you interact with the people you manage to get the maximum result, every single time.
Employee engagement is one of the most crucial determiners of organizational success. With remote workers becoming a more important part of many organizations, it’s up to each manager to ensure that these employees feel like a valuable part of their company.
By following the tips set out above, this doesn’t have to be the monstrous challenge it may have been in the past. Good luck!