The Corona pandemic is spreading globally and becoming more alarming than ever. In the United States, many events were forced to cancel such as the Facebook F8 conference because of Covid-19. Companies like Twitter and Square – according to CEO Jack Dorsey – also ask employees to work from home. As Covid-19 pandemic is getting worse, more and more companies is implementing work from home strategy, some countries even make it a must.
Work at home? At first, anyone can be very happy because of excitement. But be careful, you may fall into the trap of isolation and distraction.
“Thanks to COVID-19, I can work from home this week! Or maybe not.”
Teleworking or working from home today is no longer a new form but it does not really bring a sense of security for managers. Many questions were raised: “How will employees be supervised when they cannot be seen?”, “Is professionalism maintained in pajamas?” ….
However, every problem has two sides. Besides the instability, of course, there are many opportunities. Teleworking if built and managed successfully, can be seen as an opportunity for organizations to build trust and increase employee productivity. This is also considered as an initiative in managing personnel to attract talents and reduce the costs for the organization. There will be jobs that are unsuitable for remote jobs as well as those that require workers to be present at the office. But on the other hand, some jobs have the flexibility to be able to perform well in many different places. To work at home effectively, you need to follow certain guidelines:
If your company asks employees to work from home, here are some tips from someone who has 10 years of remote working experience, helping you balance work and life in the days of avoiding epidemics.
But please notice that it is just personal experience, it may not be true for all.
Guide to work from home
Make a schedule
Working from home means that you get up whenever you want and work whenever you can. Flexibility is a great advantage when you work from home. However, you still need a specific schedule to complete the assigned task as well as a clear demarcation between work and home life. You should try to work at a fixed time of day.
There is a separate working corner
Boundaries are important when working from home, to help you both get the job done and make sure it does not affect your own life. You should have a separate working corner at home instead of working in the kitchen or living room. Keep your room closed until you finish your day’s work.
When working from home you may be more distracted than at work: neighbors come over to play and “gossip”, your child cries, you are fascinated by an attractive television program … This obviously affects the productivity and efficiency of your work. Therefore, you need to minimize distractions in every way such as meeting your neighbors at a more appropriate time, not working separately during a fixed working time … Create a professional working environment even at home.
Make a to-do list
A to-do list is great whether you are working from home or at work. But when working from home, you can often confuse work and privacy. So, a to-do list in order of priority will help you know what you need to do and the tasks you have completed. Just 10 minutes to list before the working day, your work will be much simpler and more effective.
Many times when working from home, it is easy to forget that you are at work, especially if you do not really like your work. But try to create the habit of a professional employee: a neat desk, dressed without being too formal but not too sloppy, answering the phone politely … Professional habits not only help you be effective in the present but also work when you later work at the office.
Building relationship network
Working from home does not mean separating yourself from society. You can still build and develop online relationships, make friends, post current status on social networks, communicate, exchange information with colleagues, friends and of course, indispensable. meeting face to face. You will not feel lonely, at the same time be updated with knowledge about the work, receive ideas, useful tips.
Build a work from home plan
The development of technical technology has helped to reduce part of the pressure on working in big cities where workers can work from home and limit the time to move to the office. Not just because of Covid-19, work from home is the trending movement for companies in this digital world.
In the United States, 31% of remote workers were in 2016 and 43% in 2017, including workers who work fewer than once a week. This data shows that gradually, many workers need to work remotely and businesses have gradually standardized the process to serve this demand.
Identify the right people – the right jobs
The first task of planning and managing employees who are working from home is to decide whether the staff is qualified enough and the characteristic of the work can be done from home. There will be employees who are fit for doing work anywhere outside the office. According to Gallup analysis, more than half (about 55%) of jobs in the United States can be done by working from home. There will also be employees who are more comfortable with being in the office each day than being able to flexibly work in other places. In the Best Practices for Managing Teleworkers report: Changing Attitudes, Changing Ways from Frost & Sullivan has the fact that many employees do not feel confident enough about the performance of working at home or anywhere that is outside the office.
Develop effective programs
Once a decision has been made on the development of a teleworking method, Human Resources managers should keep in mind the following:
In order to achieve the expected results, when building a team of remote workers, it is necessary to agree on the rights and obligations between workers and businesses.
Working in group
When managing a remote worker system, Human Resources managers need to build a remote workgroup with a combination of support among members. Developing a work path for the whole team and requiring consistency in time and work progress.
If team members work directly with customers outside, make sure to ask for transparency and timely support for customers.
One problem that makes telecommuting less efficient is technological problems. Those who do not work in the office require the support and stable connection of online platforms. Before building an effective remote team, make sure that there is ongoing support from your business’ technical department.
By working from home, managers can nurture their employees’ respect for management and vice versa.
The result is the most reliable indicator for remote work. The overall assessment can only be based on the results that employees perform, so it is necessary to set the goals and set the requirements clearly.
Development of a teleworking program
Teleworking brings a lot of flexibility to employees as well as an inevitable development trend. Human resource managers need to have appropriate development directions and benefit both ways for both employees and organizations. At the same time, maintaining flexibility comes with regular assessments and modifications to the implementation as needed.
Brief translation from SHRM.ORG
In order to accompany the journey of internationalization of human resource management skills of personnel workers in Vietnam according to international standards, SHRM Vietnam and the PACE Business School have studied and implemented the training program. “International Human Resource Management” (referred to as “IHRM”).
How not to procrastinate when work from home
It sounds a bit funny but that is the truth. I know it is hard to roll out of bed and turn on my laptop to work on time everyday, not to mention changing into the formal pajamas that I usually wear to the office.
But the truth is that only by doing so can you send signals to your brain that you need to work.
“Dressing up” is a way to signal to the brain: we need to work!
Waking up on time, personal hygiene, changing clothes, grooming, breakfast … do exactly as scheduled every morning before you come to the company. Because if you ignore everything and sit at the table in pajamas. You will feel like you are only checking the transient work. Therefore, do everything as if you still have to go to the office like a normal working day.
There is a separate working corner
Do not ever work in bed! Also, do not work on the sofa. In short, do not work in a place where you can easily lie back and lie down at any time. But if you do not have a lot of options, leave your laptop on the table, do not leave it on your lap. This will help you focus.
Choosing a working corner depends on your interests and conditions. Maybe you will have a great working angle with the view. But if not, it does not matter.
Find a corner just for work to create the office atmosphere.
I myself choose a table near the kitchen counter to work. The problem is to set aside an area of your home to work alone, you will focus and get better at work. Do not forget, when working from home, you are at home, but at home to work. Equally important, no matter which working corner you choose, keep the space clean and tidy. This helps increase concentration and inspiration when handling tasks.
Working from a different place
Every few days, I spend my time sitting in a coffee shop. This is how I change the wind to avoid feeling a bit more urgent, it is important to feel a bit “human” when video calls via Zoom or Slack are difficult to completely replace.
If you spend 100% of your time at home, I bet there will be a time when you tend to procrastinate and want to go crazy. But with this epidemic situation, this seems impossible.
However, if possible, take a stroll around the house when you have time. Sitting in one spot all day is easy but quite harmful to your health. Sitting at a computer screen all day also makes you tired.
Taking pets for a walk is an effective way to relax.
If you have pets, take them outside for a walk. In case you have a cat or fish, try talking to them occasionally (it sounds a little crazy, but it helps relieve stress). If you feel stressed, keep the bosses at home, rub your stomach, scratch your back, and play with them, which is also very helpful for clearing the mood.
Know how to arrange work
My colleague, Adrienne So, also works from home and shares a lot of good experience in setting up workplaces for video conferences. A lot of things that sound like little light for Zoom meetings and foot-swapping also significantly change the way people see you.
Texting more often
The truth is, working from home so often sometimes makes colleagues feel strange from you.
I think the best solution in this case is to use Slack more effectively. Interact with people who seem to be unrelated to your work, send them funny messages, for example.
Enhancing exchanges through working tools to offset geographical distance.
This will probably never replace the chat time with friends with coffee or beer in the middle of the day. But at least remind everyone of your presence.
However, if things do not work out through text messages, just pick up the phone and talk to them directly. You also know how texting sometimes makes things look ugly.
Do not watch TV
You are not as good at working in noisy spaces as you think. If you indulge yourself that you only watch a little bit, you will get addicted. This applies to games and books – except for music. If you are not doing anything in the office, do the same at home when you are at work.
Selecting a playlist at home makes you more motivated.
Prepare junk food
At work, you feel hungry. You wander around in the kitchen looking for something to eat. It is a great reason to justify being “lazy” and “procrastinating” when working from home. Prepare healthy snacks and keep them at hand on your desk.
Similarly, you should cook leftovers for dinner to have food for a few more meals a week. But if possible, change dishes often or use the delivery service to avoid feeling bored or spend several hours out to eat.
Turn off the device
The thing that reminds me most of the time when I was working in the office was when I moved to work (actually when I was working, it was my least favorite thing). The traffic was awful, the streets were very crowded and the weather was erratic. But at least you have a clear divide between work and vacation. This boundary no longer exists when you work from home.
I have not thought of any good solution. Turning off Slack – or the tool you use to work – may be one way. People are less likely to text you if they find you are not online.
Fold the computer, get rid of work tools is how you set the boundaries of work – life.
Or you can find a gym or an extracurricular activity for you to leave the house for a certain period of time and choose it as your boundary.
Top 7 remote working tools
TeamViewer connects people, places, and events around the world based on the widest range of platforms and technologies so as to improve support and secure remote access. This is one of the best screen sharing software that is capable of creating easy screen sharing easily from a distance. For personal purposes, this software is free while it is paid for any commercial purposes. It is easy to use and installation is also easy to perform. Usually it is done by establishing a personal connection between two desktops that allow you to use it in responsive mode.
TrueConf Video Conferencing Software
TrueConf is a modern, easy-to-use remote work tool that provides professional video conferencing services to remote meeting participants. The software is compatible with any device and with any operating system such as Windows, Mac, Android and iOS. Using TrueConf software, you will receive smooth and high-quality online meetings with images quality up to 4K and vivid, high quality sound. It is also important that the software provides interactive tools and system features, creating an environment conducive to organizing online meetings, where the image and sound quality is clear. The software allows you to share documents, share screens, send messages to meeting participants.
So TrueConf Video Conferencing software is the combination of everything you need so you can connect with colleagues, partners, wherever you are.
This is a remote working tool that you cannot ignore, imagine it as a “chat room” for all employees in your company. You can create each item together or individually so that each person can participate in different projects of the company.
The biggest advantage of Slack is that it is cross-platform (computers, Android, iOS) so everyone in your company can chat with each other regardless of what device they use.
Trello is an easy-to-use tool for remote workers. It can help you organize your work and break it down. If you are looking for a tool that can help you track and monitor your work easily, you should try Trello. It has a tag feature that helps keep track of your project and get work done.
With dropbox – sharing software, saving data on the network allows users to synchronize data between computers, mobile devices with each other. Through dropbox software you can share all files with colleagues, friends, relatives or store data without worrying about losing.
Hootsuite is a tool to get business results that you can measure. The social media management platform allows you to create smarter workflows, scale across your organization, and deliver viable ROI.
Google Drive is a Google service that helps you store online in the cloud and share files and other folders for everyone. You can quickly upload important data from your computer to store on Google Drive or create folders, documents, spreadsheets … on Google Drive. And you can also access data on any device, you will have free storage space up to 5GB when you use Google Drive.
The benefits of using remote work tools
– A recent survey found that many employees working remotely feel that they have superior performance and with the support of many technologies they have a better relationship with employees at the office.
– Reduce the traffic load, if companies have policies for employees to work at home, the traffic congestion during peak hours at work and after work will no longer occur.
– Working remotely helps employers save significant costs for real estate or other types of network, electricity, water, air-conditioning services charges …
The remote working tools discussed above are 7 tools for you to refer to when working from home, becoming a tool to help you complete the job successfully and effectively.
5 essential characteristics of working from home employee
Working from home with employees is also a challenge because it is difficult to find a person who meets all the necessary factors to be able to work remotely. Talking about the challenges of working with remote employees, CareerLink’s Recruitment Consulting Manager shared: “The most important thing is to find competent people, know how to organize and above all, be responsible with their work. “
Below is a list of the most important qualities you should consider when hiring remote workers, please refer to it!
Be proactive at work
One of the reasons why employees try and do their best at work is because they have a supervisor who checks the work closely and gives prompt reminders, but when working with the employee who is far away, that is not the right choice. Although employees love to be checked and instructed regularly because they will have less pressure, not all feel properly motivated and this will affect their productivity. As an employer, you need someone to be proactive because they do not need reminders to work.
Good writing and communication skills
Working with remote employees, you certainly cannot lack tools such as email, chat applications … That is why you need someone with good writing skills who can convey the message. Their words are clear, concise and easy to understand. That way, they and the people in the team will understand which tasks need to be prioritized and which deadlines should be met.
In most cases, teleworkers do not like the limitations of working hours but they still need to have enough discipline to meet deadlines and manage time so as not to slow down the overall schedule and take responsibility for his actions. Once you assign a task to them, you need to make sure that they will finish with good quality and on time.
Understanding of technology
Remote work would not be possible without modern technology and this also means employees need to know all the equipment and applications needed to complete the job or communicate with you. Needless to say, they need to know how to use video chat to make it easier to communicate, how to handle a computer problem when there is no IT always “attached” as in the office …
The ability to decide and solve issues independently
Although you should definitely open communication channels whenever possible, sometimes remote employees may be in different time zones, so there will be limited contact time between the two parties. If something goes wrong now, it is certainly not a big deal if you hire someone who can make your own decisions and fix your problem without having to consult your everything.
Finding a teleworker can be even more difficult than finding a workplace worker. However, if you are successful, they are likely to bring more value to your company, while also reducing overhead costs, which is a good reason to increase your motivation.
10 Useful Tips To Conduct Long-Distance Job Search
Internet – infinite source of information
It can be said that using the Internet is the smartest choice to find a job for yourself. This is where most employers post information about job opportunities. With access to news sites like Craigslist, Indeed, CareerBuilder, you can seize the opportunity to work at any location, anywhere in the world. In cases you are looking for an internship, there are new internship portal for interns like Internsg, Oppshares,…. for your reference.
Flexible job search
If your application is unsatisfactory, try your luck with the relevant fields. Sometimes you move to a new working environment, but the achievements and certificates you earn are not always recognized.
Pay more attention to where you live
Use Google and Yelp to get information about where you intend to move to work, so register on the official website of that city, so you can access their internal recruitment information.
Creating personal information on social networks
There are countless jobs you can find on social networks and your friends on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter are always happy to recommend you a suitable job. Please share about where you are going, maybe you will directly or indirectly get useful information from friends, all questions will be answered quickly, which is really helpful.
Select an appropriate phone number
You should have a contact using the number of the city you live in, sometimes employers only care about native speakers, or at least they will give this group a significant priority.
Limiting the provision of information on accommodation
This may seem unreasonable, because you always want the employer to be able to contact you, but based on the above, perhaps you should only provide your specific contact information for employers when you participate in the face-to-face interview.
Go to job centers
Do not be afraid to underestimate the support of job-hunting organizations, they are always provided with the best skills to help you find a good job. Take a bit of time to sign up, and you will probably quickly get useful advice.
Freelance, contract-based, temporary jobs are not a bad choice. They help you to be proactive in arranging a schedule, work freely and still have income in the pursuit of long-term goals. But pay attention, a Freelancer must always know how to market themselves, make an impression on employers.
Change now if you really need it
Maybe you quit your job for a legitimate reason, like a low salary or over-stressed job, but sometimes the reason is simply that you want to change for personal reasons. It could be moving on to doing things you really enjoy, have an interest in, or have dreamed of before. If something prevents you from changing to a better job, it is just your own lack of effort.
Choose the right jobs
You can send 10 applications and receive up to 5 job offers, but that number can be 100 and 1. The difference comes from the way you choose the jobs to apply for. Aim for the positions that really fit your abilities, setting over-set goals is one of the reasons you fail. In addition, you should try in all areas that you can work, so the likelihood of getting a job will be much higher.
It can be said, looking for a job is like you are working, especially when you are looking for a job in another city. The most important thing is to be patient and patient – “Practice makes perfect”.