Like many of you, RiskSOURCE has implemented a work remotely arrangement for our staff. This time last week, we started with a trial run and asked everyone to stay home so that we could identify any challenges. This would allow us time to address them.
Luckily we encountered minor hiccups and not major challenges. We’ve been working on our contingency plan since Hurricane Ike blew through here in 2008. It was then that we started preparing for full remote access.
We announced on Monday, via a WebEx Staff Meeting (which went very well by the way!), that we were working remotely until further notice.
Working from home isn’t for everyone. With some, the job function simply won’t allow. Others thrive when they’re in a work environment. We gathered some tips from people that have spent their entire careers working from home:
- If you can have a dedicated office space or need to convert a spare bedroom into one for the time being, that’s helpful. It’s hard to work at the kitchen table or in front of the TV.
- Have a set schedule and stick to it. If you normally sit down at your desk at 8:30 am in the office, do the same at home.
- Don’t forget to take breaks and eat lunch, and if you can get outside for a walk, that’s ideal.
- Create a morning routine. For some that can mean spending time with the kids and then getting a cup of coffee before settling in to work.
- Set ground rules with other people at home. Children especially can have a hard time understanding why you’re home and not spending every minute with them. Explain to them that you need to take turns with your time.
- Ask for help. If you were physically at work and had an issue or needed to run something by someone, you’d swing by their workspace and chat. Pick up the phone and talk to your co-worker when you work remotely.
When it comes to working from home, we’re very much aware of the need for ongoing communication and making sure that everything is secure. Here’s just some of the tips I shared with our team:
- Use a designated and secure internet connection (no public wifi or hotspots)
- Log out and shut down your work computer at the end of each day
- Keep the team informed by updating your schedule, using Webex for meetings and emailing your work schedule every Friday
- If you need assistance, reach out, we’re still here to provide support to one another
During our remote staff meeting on Monday, one of the biggest concerns was how do we keep our work culture alive? This may be a topic for another blog post but, as a team, we did brainstorm some ideas. Follow us on social media and we’ll let you know what some of our ideas are and how it’s going.
It’s important during this challenging time that we remain flexible and patient. We’re all in this together as we work towards keeping our workplace and our community safe. Please let us know how you’re doing.
VP of Agency Operations