How to make sure your employees are productive when working from home
October 09, 2013

Working from home sounds good in theory. You can sleep in a little because you're skipping the commute, make a real breakfast, do work while reclining on the couch, have the TV going in the background and stay in your pajamas all day. However, many of these perks can take a toll on your work. 

As such, firm owners have an important decision to make if they are considering allowing their workers to complete their tasks remotely. It can be hard to manage these staff members, but some excel and accomplish more when in familiar surroundings. 

So, for the employees who can and want to work at their houses, what can company leaders do to ensure that these individuals are productive?

Keep the lines of communication open
Working at home should only be allowed if staffers can ensure that they'll be able to be reached, whether that's online, by phone or any other medium. Entrepreneur Magazine said that being open to communication and remaining sincere in all messages is one of the key tips to managing remote workers. The magazine recommended that leaders suggest workers stay transparent and inclusive, which can foster trust and make sure everyone feels included.

Make sure there's a social aspect
When workers complete tasks at home, they might be more productive, but they also lose the social side of the job. This might seem like a good thing, as it could cut down on distractions, but adding to company culture and making friends with co-workers motivates individuals to do better work and help out the team. 

As such, CNNMoney stated that in order to effectively manage and promote productivity, there has to be a social aspect remote workers can take part in. For instance, entrepreneurs should set up a company instant messaging service or create an online forum individuals can communicate on. 

"When you show your own human side as well, communication rises to a whole new level," Eucalyptus Systems CEO Marten Mickos told the news source.

Gather every so often
If possible, managers should consider gathering employees together every so often. The timeline is up to them - perhaps once a month or quarterly. In an interview with Forbes, software development company 37signals partner David Heinemeier said that his company gathers and celebrates three times a year in order to promote the business culture and get some face time with everyone. He also claimed that having a good time with co-workers is essential to productivity.

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