Working From Home for the First Time
Posted on March 10, 2020, by Devyn Hinchee
Owing to the recent Covid-19 outbreak employees all over the world are working from home for the first time. In some cases, entire companies are implementing work from home policies and procedures. In other cases, people are being asked to work from home if they’re feeling ill. Even in areas where the virus hasn’t hit, Human Resources departments are building strategies to make working remotely accessible for all of their employees as a precaution.
For many of these employees, working from home is an entirely new experience and some are feeling nervous or unhappy about the changes. Others are feeling like this could be the start of their company being more open to remote work and it, therefore, has a lot of pressure to be a successful experiment.
As a 100% remote company, HiringSolved employees are very used to working from home so we wanted to share some suggestions to make this transition a little easier for all of the newcomers!
Build a schedule
“Stick to a schedule! I hit the gym first thing in the morning and try to get lunch at the same time every day, this way I organize my work around it.” – Laetitia Ouadah
Building a schedule helps you to craft a workday similar to what you’re used to in an office. Set aside time to have meetings, have coffee breaks, to go to lunch, and to get certain tasks done. Don’t forget to stop working at the end of your day! If you’re adjusting from an in-office job, keep your schedule as similar as possible so you aren’t trying to deal with too many new things at once.
Get ready as if you’re going to the office
“Leave the house early in the day for something. I hit the gym first thing. Leaving early and returning helps me focus for the rest of the day. Rolling out of bed and going directly to my desk gets old fast.” – Jeremy Roberts
“Shower before working! I’ve seen a difference in productivity when I get ready as if I’m going into an office. It can be hard to be productive in pajamas, in my opinion.” – Dan Wieder
Keeping up the mentality of working by getting dressed and ready for the day just as you would before going into the office can help you stay in the work mode you need. If you normally work out in the mornings, keep doing that! If you normally go on a walk with your dog and then get ready for the day, keep it up! Getting up and moving can help you be ready to sit down to work whether you’re at home or in the office.
Have a Designated Work Area
“Make sure you have a designated work area. There’s nothing wrong with working from your couch at times, but you need a spot you can go to when distractions are around (significant others, family, pets) and focus is needed.” – Dan Louks
Ideally, you have a home office that you’re able to work in to truly separate work from home. Sometimes that isn’t the case. If you don’t have a separate working space, be sure to communicate with the people in your house about the separation of work and home life that you’re going to need while you’re working from home.
Build a communication strategy
“The biggest pitfall for new work from home employees stems from a loss of communication. Remote work can be hard but if you keep the lines of communication open, you should be able to handle anything!” – Devyn Hinchee
Make sure that you and your team decide how you’re going to stay in touch during the remote period. Whether it’s catching up on Slack or building in daily check-in calls over Google Meet, there will be a communication solution for you. In the new remote period, it’s better to overcommunicate than to feel like anything is getting lost in the cracks.
“Have a plan if your home wifi goes down at your home office. I see it as a respected honor to be trusted to work from home, so I always make sure my work environment is conducive to being very productive.” – Heather Thomas
It’s very possible that something will go wrong; wifi could go down, there could be construction on your road that makes it impossible to have calls, your computer could break without IT there to fix it, etc. Work with your team to decide the best course of action should something go wrong. Having a plan ready is the best way to mitigate any sort of interruption that could occur.
Ultimately, working from home is about doing what you do at work, but at home! The difficult part is that it’s a change to routine and communication processes. To be successful you need to be ready to adjust to the changes and we have no doubt that you’ll do a great job. We hope that you stay safe and healthy during this time!
If you want to hear more from us about working remotely, check out this episode of The HireCast!