Perhaps the most common fear among employers when it comes to letting their employees work remotely is that productivity levels will drop. However, if we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times: remote workers are more productive than in-office employees.
However, if you’re not one to rely on stats, there are ways to determine for yourself whether or not your employees are getting their work done as efficiently at home as they would in an office. Curious how to assess your remote employees’ productivity levels? We’ve got a few ways that you can check-in to make sure that they aren’t checked-out.
There’s nothing wrong with a deadline. In fact, it can be one of the most useful tools for helping employees prioritize projects. Every task that you assign to your remote workers can be tracked by deadlines, making it quite clear whether or not work is getting done on-time, before its deadline, or long after it was supposed to be finished.
It may seem simple, but keeping track of deadlines can be an easy and effective way to make sure work is getting done in a productive manner.
If you’re trying to get a little more of a zoomed in view of what your remote employees are getting done during the workday or work week, asking for regularly scheduled status updates may be the solution. Whether you want to know what the employee accomplished that day, week, or month, you can ask him or her to keep track of everything and send over a summarized list of updates as often as you choose.
Asking for regular status updates helps keep employees accountable, as well as helps keep them on track for finishing up any larger projects that may have otherwise thrown on the back burner.
Participation is key, especially if you’re a remote worker. It’s easy to sit back and hang out in the corner when you’re working from home. Keep an eye on remote workers who you think aren’t fully investing themselves in the company. Do they reply to group threads? Are they participating in Slack channels? Do they speak up during group video calls?
Of course, a quiet remote worker is not the same as an unproductive remote worker (and remember, many remote workers are often introverted). However, if your employee never seems to know what’s going on during conference calls, doesn’t respond to group emails that ask for responses, and never peeps up in business chat channels, you may have a non-productive worker on your hands.
You don’t have to play watch dog as an employer, and by asking your remote employees to monitor their own productivity, you won’t have to. Sending out weekly surveys or jumping on regular video calls can be a great way to gage how remote employees feel about their own productivity.
These types of dialogues can also lead to finding ways that you can help to improve remote employees’ ability to work from home. Conversations are important, and when it comes to productivity, if you want an honest answer, you may just simply need to ask the source.
Noticing that you’ve been getting higher sales since letting your sales team work from home? Seeing more creativity in the work the art department is sending to you now that they’ve all gone remote? Take note of how the work quality and sale statistics change as a repercussion of allowing your employees the opportunity to work remotely.
Nothing speaks louder than the actual facts, and sometimes it may only take standing back and taking a good, hard look to see how productive your remote employees are being and how things are actually changing within your company.
This article was originally published on Remote.com