HR

Remote Working: How To Manage During Coronavirus Crisis

Linh Pham

April 15, 2020

Coronavirus is currently on the top of concern worldwide as a result of the fact that its impacts are spreading in all aspects of the socio-economy, disrupting all activities from daily life to work at offices. In order to avoid the spread of the dangerous virus,  a lot of businesses have taken the remote working plan into account and carried out methods to manage the performance of employees when they’re not coming to the offices. 

So, “how to effectively manage remote working teams during the coronavirus crisis” is the hot question that many team leaders have currently. This article may help you to conduct jobs as effectively as possible despite the crisis outbreak.  

 

Remote working – the new trend during coronavirus outbreak

To ensure the health and security of employees under Coronavirus pandemic, a variety of companies have required their staff to work from home but ensuring the productivity of work. Welcome to the new normal, where managing a remote working team is a skill you’ll rapidly need to learn.

Social media platform Twitter has urged its employees to work from home, as part of its efforts to limit the further spread of the coronavirus. Tech giant Google and investment bank JP Morgan are also among the companies reportedly testing out remote working policies as a precaution. 

And in Vietnam, since the “war” against Coronavirus entered the second phase, a series of companies in many industries, from big brands such as Vingroup, Vinamilk, AB Inbev, Nielsen, Tiki,etc to start-ups have officially applied remote working. Since then, there is a need for having an effective way to manage remote working teams because direct management is impossible. 

 

How to keep teams well-managed while remote working?

1. Establish daily check-ins

A woman doing teleconference with her remote working team

In every work environment, creating a daily check-in routine is an important way to set priorities and foster connections. Instead of face-to-face greetings at offices, a morning check-in via video chat, phone call or instant message can create an atmosphere of discipline while working from home. These check-ins can be one-on-one or held among small groups. You may follow many styles of check-ins such as via an attendance app or a virtual meeting via Zoom, etc. Revamped meetings that adapt specifically to remote workers can help you maintain productivity.

2. Create motivation for the enthusiastic support

Don’t forget timely compliments and rewards

For outstanding results, give more specific compliments to employees in private conversations and/or on the company’s general communication channel. This is also an opportunity for employees to pass on their work experience to colleagues, encouraging the will of both sides to strive. When employees report that they have completed a task, do not save simple encouragement such as “Good job!”, “I have received it.” Thank you!”. Furthermore, a reward is also an effective means to stimulate employees’ willingness to support.

Give usual care for your team

Do not make the work time be full of work. Team leaders can also make use of lunch breaks to care about their staffs’ daily lives during COVID-19, how they prepare their lunch or how about their families’ health, etc. Creating time and space for workers to talk about news, hobbies, and other topics — just as they would have done in the office — helps them relieve stress and feel better connected.  It is essential to create a cozy and relaxing work atmosphere. 

Inspire remote working teams to build their dedicated workspaces

Remote working from home

Dedicated workspaces can help free employees from the normal distractions from home life. Understanding many parents’ needs to be at home with their children due to school closures, an office away from family can allow you to maintain focus and stay on task. Even if this office is a temporary makeshift space — such as a guest room, basement, attic or walk-in closet — this can help you mentally separate work from home.

Be flexible

Staff working hours should be more flexible. Because, in a given time, your employees have a lot of ongoing work. Trust your team and give them the freedom and flexibility to get the work done on schedule and most effectively. That is good for your team in a long term.

3. Helpful remote teamwork tips

The major difference between working at offices and remote working is the indirect management that may not facilitate leaders to well manage their teams and conduct the work productively. There are some effective tips that team leaders should follow to ensure work progress despite not coming to offices:

  • Break down into individual jobs, set specific deadlines, and assign them to individuals, not to the whole group
  • Set up the flow chart and follow the process from the smallest jobs
  • Continue to make periodic work reports
  • Remain effective remote communication
  • Share the meeting agendas and take note on cards to ensure every employee can catch up

Especially, communication in remote work – if done improperly – will lead to the break of the flow of information, “inconsistency” means that work efficiency is significantly reduced.

So how to effectively communicate during remote working?

The most type of communication in teams is a meeting for discussing internal jobs or,  in other word a “video call”. A short meeting can be videotaped, edited with distractions and shared with everyone in the company. Video meetings don’t need to be time-bound. Often enough, Trello team members will simply co-work over video on Friday afternoons, chatting (or not) when it feels right.

 

Supporting tools for remote working teams

Tools to use for remote working

As the name implies, these are tools to help your employees collaborate on their daily work, while managers can easily control the progress and workload. In Vietnam, a variety of popular applications you should bear in mind as followings:

  • Trello: was built based on the method of intuitively work management following items. Its strength is appropriate with medium and small businesses, easy to use and to intuitively keep track. 
  • Asana:  is a to-do list management software and Kanban model, suitable for the model of inter-functional groups or large companies. Asana has outstanding features such as good communication, visual reporting, but a high cost
  • Jira: is an application for tracking and managing bugs / problems in projects, best suited to technology companies. Jira’s outstanding features such as extremely detailed decentralized functionality, modular systems and auxiliary development toolkits allow for extremely high customization and integration.
  • Base Workflow: is a software for managing and automating business processes At a reasonable cost, Base Workflow owns an advanced decentralized system and custom data for each step, allowing linking processes. Besides, inter-departmental collaboration and integration are great.

 

Additionally, you can get insights about Vietnamese businesses during the Coronavirus pandemic collected and conducted by Viettonkin team.

To sum up, remote team management has never been so easy, especially when this sudden change due to Coronavirus broke out. However, the above suggestions will be useful for leaders and make the operation management of the team become simpler and more effective. If any difficulties have still existed, our Viettonkin is always a powerful hand for you.

 

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