Gone are the days when business operations were limited to within the actual four walls of a company. Nowadays, thanks to cloud computing and other technologies, companies can cost effectively run their operations from the comfort of a virtual office.
Even though a virtual office’s operations go on online, there are still people behind the company’s operations. These people are made of flesh and blood, and same as with working in a physical office, virtual office workers can be overworked thus leading to less productivity in the workplace. Thus, same with a physical office, managers in a virtual office have to learn to organise the workplace and engage employees in a manner that drives them to give their best towards accomplishing organizational goals, as well as motivates them to remain productive without unduly straining them.
Some of the common tactics being used by some of today’s successful virtual companies to keep up the productivity of their employees while minimising their workplace stress include;
- Increase accessibility
The employees of a virtual office typically operate from a remote location. Since the employee can only access the company via online means, it is best if the employee can access the company’s platform at any time of the day and with ease. Problems with accessing the company platform or accessing needed information from the company can cause complications for the employee. This can impede productivity and lead to tasks not being delivered within the desired time frame. Thus, to ensure an employee can get his/her job done on time and smoothly, unhindered access to the company platform and necessary information should always be guaranteed. A quality hosting service and cloud based systems can effectively help solve such issues.
- Improving communication
Managers in a virtual office should make employees in such an arrangement feel at all times like they are part of the company through steady communication. This can be accomplished by having virtual staff meetings on fixed dates, as well as by sharing updates concerning the company within a reasonable time. Also, have real-time messaging (RTM) integrated into your office communications. Several software companies can help you set up this tool. For example, Agora.io‘s RTM uses an intelligent SD-RTN network to transmit messages to different channels. This way, employees won’t feel the communication gap and can brainstorm with colleagues.
- Effective scheduling
A number of virtual companies offer their employees a significant amount of flexibility when it comes to work hours. By letting employees work at hours that let them put in their best, managers will likely be able to gain more from such employees. Naturally, deadlines will still matter in such a scenario, but flexible scheduling will give employees an opportunity to work within the provided time frame at their own pace.
- Holidays and incentives
Virtual office employees need holidays just as much as non-virtual employees do. By giving employees paid holidays to rest and recuperate at reasonably frequent intervals, employee productivity can be maintained. Financial incentives and other types of incentives can also be used to drive virtual employees to attain or surpass company targets.
- Necessary tools
Employers need to provide certain basic tools to their employees regardless if they are virtual staff or otherwise. With the right tools, employees can accomplish their duties more effectively and with better results. The key is to ensure employees always have access to the latest and most effective tools to help them stay productive regardless the circumstance.