With each passing day, coronavirus spread is increasing all over the world. Till now, there are total 170,438 Coronavirus cases & 6,526 deaths out of which 77,790 recovered. To contain the coronavirus spread during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic many organisations are recommending their staff to work from home; now also being known as WFH, for their safety. As more and more companies implement work-from-home policies due to the spread of COVID-19, employees are now asked for trying to be just as productive without their normal routines and resource which they get in the offices while working. While working from home sounds like a luxury in theory, it's certainly no vacation and being productive is easier said than done.
But to get the same productivity from work from home, some specific strategies & technologies need to be used. Every job is different and the amount one is able to achieve will vary between career types, employers and internal policies, but there are some key strategies to working from home when it comes to getting your tasks done efficiently. Now, remote working or the practice of working for an extended period outside the formal office, is growing steadily in popularity, by making use of various digital tools from Web conferencing and e-mail to mobile collaboration applications and virtual event platforms. Some of the best strategies & tools to use are –
Create a dedicated Work Space
As an employee, one needs to create a dedicated work area at home even if it is temporary during this Coronavirus outbreak situation. It can be a separate room or the space at home where others won’t disturb. Although it's convenient to stay in bed or to your sofa but to get in that work mode, it is always better to create a dedicated work space. A separate workspace is healthy as well as keeping to your regular work routine, even though you are not in the office. If you don't have a desk, one can use the dining room table which can make you feel like you're at an "office.” This helps you maintain good posture, avoid distractions, and leave your work behind at the end of the day.
Make sure you have Strong Internet access
Internet access is the most important thing which needs to be taken care of. When you work at home, one is bound to have a strong internet connection as most of the work or task assigned to you will be over the internet. One could use Wifi/Data Card/Hot Spot for the network connectivity. Having a robust internet connection is required for video conferencing, chatting which makes you an active participant. If by any reason the bandwidth is low, make sure that other insignificant or unnecessary devices are not connected. If your connection is really that weak, one must prefer audio calls than video calls. If required, one must buy necessary accessories.
Stay Connected with colleagues
If you work on a team, it is essential to keep in touch with the other team members. For this purpose, one can use WhatsApp or messaging platform like Slack so that people get update for the quick task. One can also stay connected with team members with the help of email communications. Any queries, inputs must be discussed with others. Besides email and messaging programs like Slack, it's a good idea to set up regular check-ins via phone or video conferencing like Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom.
Also Read: How to Remotely Manage your Workforce?
Get used to Video Calls
Working from home means a lot more video calls. On the tech front, video calls can make a remote work day feel more connected. Video calls are crucial as teams like to see each other when they collaborate. For this, one needs a good webcam and headset to make for a comfortable quality experience. Using your built-in webcam and basic headphones should work well enough but if you want to upgrade the experience, investing in a webcam or headset is a good idea if the worker's base computing device does not have one. In some organizations, 720P is the minimum acceptable resolution for quality results, for which one may need to get a webcam. A high-quality headset or headphones with mic are must for phone or web conferencing. Apart from this, using an appropriate software for web or video conferencing is really important. There are many software available out there like Skype, FaceTime, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Webex, Zoho & so on. Accounts are free for the basic plan in Zoom if your company does not already have a corporate one. Zoom is packed with features and is fast with clear audio and video. Some can also go for other software tools such as Skype, FaceTime, Google G Suite and countless other systems. Now these companies are making many features free and lifting the limitations to cope with coronavirus outbreak.
Make use of Google Docs and Sheets
As one cannot personally go interact & update the status or progress about the assigned task, it is advisable to use Google Docs and Sheets to keep the records and store the data. Google Docs and Sheets let teams collaborate with one another. There is one more tool named Zapier which is web service having many features like vice typing which increases the productivity.
Prepare for Distractions
Needless to say, working at home comes with the high possibility of distractions. Working from home is never as same as working in offices. One must realise that at home we can’t be always be alone. There might be kids and other family members. But one has to learn to deal with these distractions as the quality of work should not be compromised at any cost.