We are compiling telecommuting tips, resources and strategies that employers and employees can utilize to stay connected as we all navigate this COVID-19 situation. The majority of this information has been provided by the Association for Commuter Transportation.
- Communication – Leverage existing communication tools to connect with your manager and co-workers. Use existing technologies to chat, e-mail, and video conference often. Text messages and FaceTime can be just as helpful in staying connected. Reach out to others as well to break up the day so you don’t become isolated, professionally or socially.
- Schedules – Write down your daily tasks and prioritize them based on deadlines. Share progress updates internally to increase productivity and complete work on time. Keep your daily home routines as close as you possibly can to normal, make schedules for yourself and your children and stick to them as much as you can.
- Stay Active – Get dressed! This will help you get moving first thing in the morning and maintain some sense of regularity. When you travel to an office every day, you are likely walking from the train station or walking to lunch. Be sure to incorporate a home workout, yoga practice or walk around the block into your day.
- Change Your Environment – A change of environment within your home work space can keep you energized and productive throughout the day. Move to a different desk, light a candle, or play music you might hear in your company lobby or in the elevator. Also, work in a separate space at times when you need to, free from distractions, family members and temptation to be easily distracted. Be up front with family members when it is okay to interrupt and when they need to leave you alone to focus.
- Create Focused Work Time – Using technology tools for chat and video calls can interrupt productivity. For head-down focused work time, put up an away message, send a note to your team and manager and focus in on something specific. Take short breaks as well to help maintain work engagement, particularly if you are doing work that requires more concentration.
- Plan, But Be Flexible – If schools and businesses close and you are not alone in your house, plan to take shifts for childcare and adjust your work schedule. Setting clear expectations for work and home will be important. Additionally, not all your teammates may be able to work remotely. Be prepared to jump in and complete tasks and provide input on projects you might not normally work on. It might be beneficial for employees with really young children might try to use flex time to do work when the kids are napping or after they go to bed.
It is also necessary for employers to identify problematic areas that can potentially negatively impact work productivity in a telework environment and assemble solutions to assist with resolution.
Please reach out to our staff at any time for assistance with telecommuting or other travel demand management issues.