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Across industries and business spaces, the essence of great company culture is transforming. Flexible work has become the new status quo as employees seek to fully control the relationship between their professional and personal lives. Already, 4.3 million Americans work from home for at least half of their workweek, mirroring a 140% increase in the global remote workforce since 2005.
The massive surge toward more accommodating work benefits comes with the widespread adoption of digital alternatives to your company’s business tools. Designed to sync their users across organizations, digitally transformed workspaces provide both in- and out-of-office workers a place to collaborate, communicate and share information widely. Without daily opportunities to touch base in person, businesses have realized that these tools are imperative to connecting remote team members and breaking down informational silos.
Here are a few ways to migrate to digital workspaces that can help your teams work whenever or wherever they feel most efficient:
Whether you work on a two-person or twenty-person team, you’ll fail to deliver on your projects without a proper plan in place. Regardless of whether your workforce uses flex time or stays in the office, most businesses do not have a strategy for executing on their anticipated deliverables within budget and time constraints. This has led to a meager 30% project success rate within most organizations.
Task management workspaces are one way that you can align your on- and off-site resources at both the granular and global levels of a project. These tools are a worthy investment for companies that struggle to optimize remote productivity, keep virtual employees engaged and allocate the correct number of resources.
The visual layout of upcoming due dates, daily assignments and time entry features give remote teams a simplified space for viewing what they need to work on, as well as the tasks that others on the team are tackling. Supervisors can also use these platforms to check in with each remote member of their team without having to chat or call them individually.
Task management systems also play a strong role in guiding and growing team spirit, which is no easy feat when your fellow employees are working all around the country. Each ticket in the system gets assigned to one person or a group of people, which promotes a sense of ownership of the work you deliver. Of course, this also reduces the possibility of having certain assignments slip through the cracks.
Voice over IP
One of the primary challenges that full-time remote personnel face is the lack of opportunities to differentiate their home lives from their professional ones. Without the physical separation of home and office, employees rely on other ques to toggle between work and home— whether that be working in a different room from where they relax or using a company-provided phone for business purposes and their cell phones for personal use.
However, it can be difficult for businesses, especially smaller ones, to provide their remote staff with quality business phones and other hardware tools needed to make professional calls— meaning that their home numbers now become their work numbers, making it increasingly challenging to separate the two mindsets.
Voice over IP networks, or VoIP, is an innovation that provides remote employees with the ability to use personalized business numbers from their home devices— whether it be their cell phones, computers or tablets— giving remote workers more separation between work and home life. VoIP numbers also tend to be a more affordable option for businesses, as there’s no need to provide each employee with phone equipment.
Because it uses the internet to connect its users, VoIP is just one example of the value that cloud-based workspaces can provide flexible work environments. Cloud workspaces give your flex workers equal access to their business numbers and contacts, keeping your team accessible regardless of time, distance or personal schedules.
What’s the difference between an engaged workforce and a disengaged one? More often than not, cultivating a happy, productive culture within your business results in drastic improvements to your overall return on investment. Engaged employees have higher production levels, lower turnover rates, and have a positive effect on their coworkers. On the other hand, disengagement costs the American economy up to $350 billion in annual productivity losses.
The solution? For many, gamified workspaces offer new avenues for collaboration, innovation and overall employee engagement. As the name suggests, gamification software develops games around your team’s everyday workflows. Achievement badges, leadership boards and integrated chat rooms all help your teams experience a sense of accomplishment after tackling big projects.
While many gamified workspaces rely on healthy competition to draw out the best performances of each person on your remote team, they can also be a great platform for collaboration and team camaraderie. This is because team-based games, by their very nature, encourage constant communication and creative problem-solving while also giving your team opportunities to sharpen new skills. Gamification delivers key insights from the employer’s perspective as well, allowing you to mine information on total productivity levels as well as individual employee proficiencies. This can help you identify the personal motivations and inhibitors for each individual you work alongside, which can be challenging perspectives to gather outside of traditional office environments.