Facebook, Apple and Twitter have now requested that all staff working in positions where they’re capable of working remotely to do so. Amidst fears that coronavirus will spread in the United States as it did in Asia and in parts of Europe, major companies aren’t taking any chances.
And, while this might be welcome news for employees who think remote working means lying around in their pyjamas all day (okay, sometimes it does), there’s a lot more to know about working from home during COVID-19 than you might think.
As remote workers, we understand a thing or two about how to work remotely and still maximise your time and efforts. Here are seven tips to help you get organised and better manage your time as you work remotely during the spread of coronavirus.
Working From Home During COVID-19
1. Ask About Policy
When working from home it’s important to understand what policies are in place. What kind of working hours should you be expected to stay online and how are you expected to turn in work…things like that. To avoid any confusion while working from home during COVID-19, it’s best to ask about your company’s remote working policy (if there is any) to ensure you’re still meeting the expectations of your role.
2. Create A New Routine
Transitioning from in-office to at-home work might sound exciting. But, you’ll quickly realise that you won’t get any work done if you simply work from your bed in your PJs all day. To ensure you’re maximising your productivity, you’ll want to create a new routine as fast as possible. This includes setting up a space in your home that you can use as a remote office of sorts. It helps if it’s far away from your bed and other distractions.
3. Make Use Of Cloud-Based Apps
If your company hasn’t previously allowed workers to work from home, then some of the first issues to take care of are communication and organisation. It helps to get everybody onboarded to a cloud-based app for sharing documents, projects, and other materials. And, if you can, ensure you’re connected to a platform like Google Hangouts, Skype or Slack so you can communicate with your coworkers like you normally would in the office.
4. Organize Your Team
If you’re in charge of a team of workers who are working from home during COVID-19 then you’ll want to organise your team as fast as possible. This means handling the above issues, like getting them set up with accounts on Slack or ensuring they all know what they need to turn in and when. Definitely use a cloud calendar for updates if your work comes with strict deadlines.
5. Take Frequent Breaks
Taking frequent breaks from work is recommended whether you’re working at home or in an office. But, because you’re in the comfort of your own home, it can be easy to forget to take breaks. It feels like you’re kind of already on break, right? Stand up and stretch every hour and take time to walk outside if weather permits. The fresh air and sunlight will help you recharge your mind and body.
6. Stay Healthy
The whole point of working at home during COVID-19 is so that you and your coworkers can stay healthy. Preventing the further spread of coronavirus is easy if you’re self-quarantined. But, it’s also important to continue to stay healthy in other ways. Get up and exercise, eat right and be sure to continue to take your vitamins. If it’s recommended in your area, practice social distancing as well.
7. Limit Social Media Use
Working from home can cause loneliness, and it’s common to check your social media more when you’re working remotely. But, in an age where media travels at the speed of light, it’s best to limit your social media use. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with all of the negativity surrounding coronavirus. So, limit your consumption of it by only checking official updates once or twice a day.