How to monitor remote employees and increase productivity is a question we are often asked by those managing remote workers. Where you manage a remote workforce, understanding the dynamics and how you influence them is a key part of your role. Your remote workers must maintain a productive mindset that fosters success. This is achieved by engaging employees and removing the potential feelings of alienation of working away from the office.
Keeping your employees in a productive and consistent working state is an essential part to success. Disengaged and unmotivated employees aren’t likely to share your mission for success. But how do you track productivity levels? Monitoring is one approach. It can help encourage healthy productive habits. However, some people view employee monitoring as intrusive. They may also consider it an act of spying on the employee.
To eliminate feelings of distrust, we must combine effective leadership skills and technology to increase productivity without alienating your team.
As a leader you can look at using technological tools to stay in touch with the tasks being worked on. Taking time to find software that promotes productivity and communication is a good idea.
Team communication is necessary to ensure engagement in a remote work environment. Communication based on tasks, growth and vision should be regular. Keeping your team in the loop with your goals as well as directing and celebrating achievements. Any opportunity to create a positive, engaging conversation within your team aids in the centralisation of your remote team.
Communication is extremely important when explaining employee monitoring to employees. You need to explain the productivity boost when employee monitoring is in use gives your employees necessary insight and transparency which will help with your engagement efforts.
Honest communication about monitoring creates trust between you and your employee. Should your employee run into an issue, they will be more inclined to contact you rather than struggle on their own. Instilling a trusting relationship between you and your employees is necessary to an engaging, happy workplace. This ethos will also help the remote employee not feel so alienated.
It’s important to maintain your availability as your remote employees are possibly logging hours different than your own. Setting the positive example of productivity gives employees something to follow.
With the right technology you can send updates, share targets and goals and the wins. You can also actively keep team members informed on how you are using the monitoring software to track employee productivity. Furthermore, to avoid alienating your team, use the productivity monitoring software yourself, if you can. Actively share reports with your team to foster openness and support the claim for using the software. Leading by example will positively influence productivity, stay on task and deliver quality work.
Remember, increased productivity only comes if your employees understand why they are being monitored. Failing to disclose why you are monitoring your employees can create distrust, disengagement and less likely to feel like a part of the team. Express that employee monitoring is necessary to track productivity, better align your tasks and their urgency levels and assess company strengths and weaknesses. Use it as an aid to support your accomplishments.
If you have a mix of remote and office-based employees, ensure everyone feels equal and heard. Try having:
- the office-based staff dial in from their own workspace, so everyone has the same experience
- use skype with video or other technology. It is a great way to be inclusive of all members on your team.
- ensure remote staff visit the office from time to time to interact face to face with office staff
Remote workers must be engaged and purposeful in their interactions. Without the random hallway conversation, remote workers need to have purposeful interactions with other members of your team. The opportunity to stay connected, build relationships, and feel like they are part of a larger team, working towards a purpose can be lost if you do not engage and connect your remote worker to your community at work.
What to do Next
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Metis HR is a professional HR Consultancy based in the North West of England supporting clients across the country. Metis HR specialises in providing outsourced HR services to small and medium-sized businesses. Call us now on 01706 565332 or email us to discuss how we may help you.