Connect with your teammates and be more productive
There is no better time than now to talk about the benefits and challenges of working from home. No matter how unpredictable the world can be, you should understand the stability that accompanies telecommuting options. We all know that working from home allows for greater work-life balance and eliminates stressful commutes, but what else can it do? Let’s break down the challenges and how you can stay connected with Microsoft Teams.
Adjusting to remote work and learning
Around the world, millions of people have been impacted by the COVID-19 outbreak. It has affected how we work, how we socialize, our family life, and our community life. It hasn’t been easy. But teams are still connecting. Still collaborating. Still getting work done.
In the face of COVID-19, there are countless stories from businesses who are using Teams to connect and thrive in inspiring ways.
This sudden, globe-spanning move to remote work will likely be a turning point in how we work and learn. Already, we are seeing how solutions that enable remote work and learning across chat, video, and file collaboration have become central to the way we work. There has been an unprecedented spike in Teams usage, with more than 44 million daily users.
It’s very clear that enabling remote work is more important than ever, and that it will continue to have lasting value beyond the COVID-19 outbreak. Tools, like Teams, help organizations, teams, and individuals stay productive and connected even when they need to work apart.
Challenges of remote work
When employees are allowed to work from home, it’s a given that regulations will have to come into play. Each organization will have to take the time to think about how long they expect employees to be online and engaged, when breaks are appropriate, and how they should be keeping in contact. With remote work, communication is key. It’s best to go over this now with your team before the need for flexible hours leaves you scrambling to put rules in place.
It’s important to be aware of the fact that telecommuting boils down to trust. How much do you trust your colleagues? How much do you trust yourself? You really have to give up a bit of control and ensure that you know your employees are getting the work done even if they’re out of sight.
Alternatively, remote workers themselves may feel they aren’t being trusted, either. When you’re not in the office and sitting amongst your peers in a conference room, it’s difficult to know how much you’re being heard. Talk through your hesitations through with your colleagues. Make sure they know you’re concerned about voicing your opinion, and make sure you’re able to communicate throughout the day. This will help remedy any concerns you’re having about working apart from your team.
Microsoft Teams can help
We understand that the workforce is becoming more dispersed. This is where Microsoft Teams comes in. Microsoft Teams allows users to stay connected around the globe. Customers, partners, and teammates can all stay in touch flawlessly with Teams due to its ever-evolving capabilities. Let’s talk about a few features:
Chat as You Please – In Teams, you’re able to always keep the conversation going through group chats and one-on-one instant messaging. Whereas it may sometimes take an entire email chain for you to get the answer you’re looking for, Teams allows you to simply contact that person – or your team – directly with a quick question. This allows remote workers to stay in the loop without missing a beat, and keeps the rest of the team informed as well.
Video Conferencing – Microsoft Teams also has video conferencing. Video conferencing can help remote workers with the concerns they may be having around seeing colleagues face to face by virtually putting everyone in the same room.
Manage Channels – The “Channels” feature within Teams allows you to dedicate a shared drive to specific topics. This way, you can have separate channels for things like Events or Public Relations and include the necessary team members in each.
Shared Calendars – Teams allows you and your colleagues to view each other’s calendars so everyone can see when you have availability. This means you can easily invite others to your meeting, block off conflicts, and schedule deadlines without having to inform your team of these changes.
Document & Project Management – Some of the best benefits of Teams are its management features. Teams allows users to manage projects and documents so everyone can easily share the important files they need to. Plus, you and your team are able to clearly see each other’s upcoming deadlines and the work you still have to finish, so everyone stays on the same page.
Businesses shouldn’t fear change. For today’s changing world, embracing change means enacting the processes and technology necessary to allow employees to work remotely. All kinds of events can disrupt an employee’s access to the office – perhaps they’re traveling to another country for a sales meeting, or they’d like to keep up with the rest of the company while they care for a newborn child.
With so many reasons to work from home, organizations must create a roadmap that will allow them to acquire the assets and knowledge necessary to persist in this changing world. Once these measures are taken, your team can stay productive and collaborative – no matter the circumstances.
About Plow Networks
Headquartered in Brentwood, Tennessee, Plow Networks is a Total Service Provider (TSP) with several distinct business practices that, when consumed together, offer our clients a unique, best-in-class experience. We give organizations peace of mind, valuable time back and the economies of scale that come with having one technology partner that is focused on exceeding their expectations with every engagement.