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Working Remotely Due to COVID-19? Here’s What Business Owners Need to Know

If you’ve been forced to unexpectedly close the office due to the recent outbreak of Coronavirus, you may be apprehensive about how you’re going to keep your business running like clockwork without having the usual face-to-face contact with employees.

You may be in the fortunate position that your team can continue to work on a remote basis as you oversee their activity. If you have never run your business remotely before, it can be difficult to know how to do so effectively.

In this guide, we’re going to provide some useful tips for business owners to take into consideration on how to successfully run a business from the comfort of their own home, without unnecessary hiccups.

  • Set clear expectations

As you’ll be unable to assist employees by sitting down and talking through the task list, it’s important to set clear expectations and guidelines of their tasks. 63% of companies don’t have a remote working policy, which can lead to complications and limited productivity. Being clear and concise with your instructions and informing the team about what is happening across different departments of the company will boost collaborative working and limit confusion.

  • Be available

Make sure you’re willing to offer an open flow of communication with your employees so that they feel comfortable in asking for help and advice when they need it. If they’re unable to contact you when problems arise, problems can occur, which may result in lost time.

You may be happy to stick to traditional emails that are answered on an as-and-when basis, but if you’d prefer to answer queries rapidly, a live chat option may be best. Less formal chat platforms include Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp Business; however, Slack and Chanty are designed specifically for remote teams, allowing employees to communicate on group chats, send attachments, and conduct voice and video calls.

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  • Use an HR platform 

When it comes to certain tasks such as payroll, time and scheduling, and even hiring employees and freelancers, being out of the office can prove problematic. You may even have had to make cuts to your staff as a result of the financial stress of COVID-19. Luckily, these tasks can be managed on specialized platforms, such as HRIS Zenefits, from the comfort of your own home. The advantage of this platform is that you don’t have to worry about hiring external workers to temporarily take care of these responsibilities.

  • Cloud-connected tools

Making sure that all your employees can stay connected is essential for remote-based working. Cloud computing is a vital component of completing tasks on a day-to-day basis, as documents can be accessed and shared easily between team members. You may already have this form of technology set up for your business, but if not, it’s certainly time you researched the best platforms to suit your company. There are several options to choose from, and they all have different benefits, including the likes of:

  • Sage Drive
  • Office 365
  • Dropbox
  • AutoEntry
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Milcah Lukhanyu
Milcah Lukhanyu
I cover tech news across Africa. Drop me an email at [email protected]

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