The COVID-19 crisis has upended businesses around the world, prompting many organizations to shutter their physical locations and have employees work remotely. This, of course, has changed the way people perform their jobs and introduced complications.
If you’re a business owner or leader, you may be wondering how you can continue to support your employees in the face of a challenging situation. Fortunately, software companies like BairesDev are providing solutions for keeping your staff committed, engaged, and productive during the global pandemic.
Continue to Have Face-to-Face Time
For employees who are used to seeing their managers and coworkers in the office every day, not having that face-to-face time can be jarring. That’s why leaders should continue to have meetings and team get-togethers regularly, perhaps even more often than usual, given the lack of contact they’ll have working from home.
There are many video chat platforms that enable teams to check-in, such as Zoom, Skype, WebEx, and Google Hangouts. Given the massive increase in usage and high demand for these resources, many of them are offering limited free usage or trials.
Explore Methods of Collaborating Digitally
Collaboration shouldn’t fall by the wayside just because you’re working remotely. You might already use project management tools to ensure that everyone is on task and working together effectively, but if not, consider Trello, Monday, Asana, and Basecamp, among other software. Using different methodologies, these tools allow you to assign tasks, track progress, and communicate with team members.
Need to share files? Try cloud storage solutions like Dropbox, where you can ensure that the team members can access documents, photos, and videos, and share resources. You should also use communication tools like Slack to keep everyone apprised of the goings-on.
Provide Opportunities for Socializing
Remember that it’s not just work that has changed in light of the pandemic: your employees are also missing out on social contact. Coworker lunches, company happy hours, and even just casual chats in the breakroom are no more.
You can help keep morale up by providing opportunities to socialize remotely. In addition to having meetings on Zoom, for example, you might have virtual happy hours. Is it someone’s birthday? Have everyone contribute to an eCard or pitch in for a flower or candy delivery.
You can also initiate fun activities like Water Cooler Trivia, which can integrate with Slack. Not only will your employees get to test their knowledge, but they’ll also learn fun facts about their colleagues. Try hosting virtual book clubs, too.
Help your employees get through this by sharing important resources. These will look differently depending on your industry and the work you do, but in general, everyone could use materials about health and wellness, especially now. For example, you might send the CDC’s advice for coping with the ramifications of the outbreak.
You could also modify your wellness program. If, say, you reimburse gym memberships, you might allow employees to use the reimbursement in other ways, such as toward running shoes or at-home fitness programs. Email regular health and wellness tips, and consider hosting webinars with this advice, too. You could even offer a membership to apps like Headspace, which offers mindfulness meditations to cope with stress.
This is a difficult time for everyone, so it’s important to be patient with your employees and accommodate them as much as possible. Some of your employees are dealing with their children being at home while trying to simultaneously work remotely and must accommodate everyone’s schedule. That means they might need to share laptops and equipment and can’t always attend Zoom meetings and complete projects in as timely a manner as you might like.
Many employees may also be experiencing financial stress. One way you can help alleviate the burden is by offering on-demand pay options. Usually via an app, on-demand pay allows employees to access the wages they’ve already earned before payroll is processed. There are many examples of apps that facilitate this, such as Paylocity.
The impact of the coronavirus pandemic has been far-reaching. During this period, you’re no doubt facing enormous challenges of your own. Still, it’s essential to take care of your employees and keep morale up. Most of all, remember to exercise empathy. Work with your employees to find solutions to the difficulties they’re facing.
When we emerge from this unprecedented time, you want your employees to look back on the experience and remember how you rose to the challenge and supported them through it.