How To Set Employee Expectations For Remote Work? – 7 Useful Tips

Set Employee Expectations

If you’re a manager, a team lead, or in HR generally chances are your employees have requested to work remotely.

73% of all departments will likely employ remote workers by 2028, according to Upwork’s predictions.

Giving in to these requests is no longer as simple as saying “yes” because remote work is becoming more and more common.” Without setting expectations or defining clear remote work policies, organizations open themselves and their employees up to the risks of:

Employee burnout

Social isolation

Loss in productivity

Decreased teamwork

How To Set Employee Expectations For Remote Work?

1. Set Up Communication Channels

Communication is crucial to ensuring productivity when working with employees in a hybrid or fully remote model.

Your office-based staff and remote teams must be able to communicate with one another during the designated working hours. To begin, be clear about the equipment required for regular communication.

Will emails be effective enough to address urgent issues, especially with all the back-and-forth? If emails are no longer your primary method of communication, think about using collaboration software or shared workspaces to make calls, send files, and exchange messages more quickly.

Remote workers will miss out on social interactions like water cooler conversations and chance encounters in the hallway in addition to work communications.

To promote these kinds of virtual interactions, a social platform should be created. Updates could be as significant as reaching a sales goal or talking about your interests outside of work. Everybody, no matter where they are, can stay up to date using this platform.

2. Agree On Working Hours

Flexibility is a given when working remotely. But in order to encourage collaboration and timely, efficient communication, there must be rules in place.

Without clear instructions, your team members might not be able to deal with delayed responses. In some cases, it might even result in misunderstandings and dissatisfaction.

Team leads and managers should explicitly state an employee’s expected availability in their remote work policies as the first step in a simple solution.

Standard working hours may need to be established, but you should still give your staff the freedom to plan their time around their personal schedules as long as you don’t compromise on quality, deadlines, or timely communication.

3. Share Your Workplace Communication 

The most at risk of poor communication are remote workers. It’s critical to have a plan in place for how you’ll interact with your team and ensure that everyone is on the same page.

Slack for async communication, Zoom for one-on-one meetings, and Welcome for synchronous virtual gatherings are just a few options for communicating with remote workers. It would be beneficial if you chose and adhered to the method or combination of methods that works best for your team.

Establishing a clear hierarchy for communication is also crucial. To whom should employees address inquiries? Who makes the ultimate decisions regarding projects? A communication plan outlining who is in charge of what tasks can be helpful when several people are working on a project.

4. Establish Clear Targets And Outcomes

Some businesses make the error of overloading staff members with mandatory procedures because they believe that productivity is correlated with the number of hours worked.

It is essential to adopt a mindset shift to a results-oriented culture instead of focusing on hours and processes. Employees will be able to work smart and independently to accomplish their objectives whether they are remote or not by prioritizing outcomes.

The end result is workers who are more content with their work regardless of where (or how) they are doing it and who have a clear understanding of the bigger picture.

5. Have Routine Discussions With Employee

Well-being can easily be overlooked when your team member isn’t present in the office, and this can negatively impact productivity and employee retention. It is the responsibility of team leads and managers to facilitate an open dialogue about how employees feel about working from home and whether they need any additional tools or advice to help them manage their time well.

Set Employee Expectations

6. Check-in With Remote Employees Every Day

If you meet all of your new hires’ expectations on day one and then don’t bring them up again, your employees won’t benefit. Since humans learn best through repetition, make sure to check in with your remote team frequently.

A brief Slack message or video call to inquire about how their day is going and whether they need any assistance can serve as the basis of a daily check-in. You can stay informed about your team’s activities and determine whether expectations are being met with the help of these brief interactions.

Additionally, it gives your team a chance to speak with you if they aren’t meeting their objectives. Before the problems develop into larger patterns, you can fix them.

When it comes time to hold people accountable, this process will make it simpler. You’ll be able to understand what’s going on and why they might not be performing as expected. By checking in each day, you and your staff have the opportunity to establish positive routines and establish your expectations early on.

7. Measure Progress Effectively

Employees won’t be aware of whether they are meeting your expectations if you don’t have a precise and effective method for tracking progress. Here, key metrics come into play.

Progress should be monitored regularly on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis. Employees need to understand how they are viewed and what they can do to improve. In case you are unsure of where to start, the following are a few examples of remote work performance metrics:

  • Number of tasks completed
  • Quality of work
  • Communication with team members
  • Responsiveness to customer inquiries
  • Meeting deadlines

Your remote workers will have the chance to improve if you make it clear to them how their work will be judged. It gives remote workers a practical way to evaluate their productivity.

8. Build Team Spirit

The biggest worry about remote work is social isolation.

Negative effects, both at work and elsewhere, can result from being cut off from your coworkers and feeling disconnected from your workplace culture.

In order to promote engagement from a person’s very first day on the job, either team leads or human resources should take the initiative. Team building can be aided by something as straightforward as best-practice onboarding to the team.

Another concept is to schedule a series of virtual ice-breaking conversations over video calls to break up the workweek. So that remote workers do not get lost in the system and run the risk of missing out on important employee experiences that define your company’s culture, lighthearted events like these foster a greater sense of belonging to the company.

How To Help Your Employees Working From Home?

The ability to access talent from anywhere makes remote working a valuable opportunity for businesses looking to grow rapidly. A company that has remote work capabilities will place more emphasis on fostering a positive work environment and less on whether employees are productive from home. Both management and remote employees must be satisfied for this to happen.

Asking the following questions will help employees succeed the most when working remotely:

  • Do they have the means and equipment necessary to work effectively with other team members?
  • How simple is it for them to obtain the data they require promptly?
  • Beyond just performing work-related tasks, are we fostering an open and welcoming social environment?

In order to manage a remote workforce and meet increasing business demands, the right strategy can make all the difference.

Among the features that are useful are:

  • Content services are hosted in the cloud so employees have secure, scalable access to the critical information they need, where and when they need it
  • A secure enterprise file share solution to share, review and store sensitive information between remote workers and external stakeholders
  • A streamlined workflow solution with automation built-in to capture and manage tasks more efficiently

Why Setting Expectations For Remote Work Matters?

Planning meetings and corporate events was never a challenge in traditional workplaces. Gathering the staff might not have been the most convenient task for the day, but it could have been as easy as posting a notice on the bulletin board in the break room.

Due to the global shift toward a culture of remote working, businesses must adapt. A distributed workforce’s typical workday no longer includes spending up to eight hours at their desk. They manage their homes, make meals, and look after their children in addition to working.

Teams can be put together as needed by businesses that can clearly communicate their expectations. They will be able to depend on their employees when necessary and hold them accountable for mistakes.

Perhaps the most crucial element of having clear expectations is creating a culture at work that keeps employees. 4.53 million employees left their jobs Only in March 2022, in what is known as “The Great Resignation.”

Businesses are having a harder time keeping employees, but by clearly defining expectations for new hires, you can help them understand what the culture of remote work at your company is like. They’ll have a better chance of succeeding in their roles thanks to the information, which also gives them a clearer idea of what it takes to be a team player.

Although it can be helpful to understand what to anticipate from remote workers, it won’t help you find a solution to your issue. From onboarding to retirement, you must put expectations into action at every stage of the employee lifecycle.