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5 Simple Ways to Make the WFH Experience Better


A couple working from home
Image: Bangkok Click Studio -
As organizations enter their second (or third) month of conducting business remotely, many are finding their groove. But after addressing the pressing technological needs of their workers, ensuring that they can work from home (WFH) safely and securely, the challenge for key stakeholders like IT and HR then becomes how to make the experience better, even enjoyable.
During a webinar hosted late last month by Zoom, the cloud video services provider whose product has become a household name since social distancing began, a panel of IT executives shared some helpful tips for creating a better WFH experience. They include:
  1. Give employees the tools they need for success — One of the biggest tips that all the speakers agreed on was making sure that employees have the right technology to work from home. In the case of Uber, if employees felt comfortable doing so, they were even able to take home their in-office monitors, computer accessories, and other devices to ensure that they had the tools to do the jobs, said Shobhana Ahluwalia, Uber CIO.
  2. Communication is vital — The IT executives universally agreed on the need to communicate freely and openly. As employees adjust to the new normal of WFH, they’ll need new resources and reassurance. Everything from sharing best practices to using all-hands meetings to discuss remote working are great ways to engage and assure employees, said Brian Kirkland, CTO at Choice Hotels International.
  3. Find creative ways to combat isolation — With this shift, many employees are feeling socially isolated and disconnected from their coworkers, Kirkland said. To combat this, promote virtual activities like birthday celebrations and bring- your-dog-to-work days to help employees feel connected, he recommended.
  4. Create a WFH taskforce to develop best practices — As organizations plan their workplace strategies, it's important "to capture the expertise of your employee base," said Bryan Ackermann, managing partner and former CIO for Korn Ferry. Since this is the first time many of these organizations are doing remote working in mass, a taskforce that meets periodically to discuss what they’ve experienced can help develop WFH best practices, Ackerman said.
  5. Relax and be authentic — In many ways, there is a new video meeting and WFH playbook, Ackermann said. Any stigma about WFH is gone, and the stress over video meeting propriety is disappearing. Now isn’t the time to be bothered with video meeting faux pas of the past, like having a family member interrupting a meeting, a dog barking, or some other distraction, considering today’s atmosphere, he added.
As organizations continue down their WFH paths, new lessons will surely be learned, and workspace strategies will be adjusted. If COVID-19 has taught us anything it’s to expect the unexpected and be as flexible as possible.