The coronavirus looks like forcing a growing number of companies to adopt aremote workforce, but there needs to be processes and experience in place toensure a successful transition in response to the health outbreak.

At peer-to-peer car sharing platform Car Next Door, almost half of all staffmembers work remotely – with team members checking in from Stradbroke Islandand the Adelaide Hills as well as the suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne.

Car Next Door co-founder and CTO, Dave Trumbull, said Car Next Door offers itsteam this level of flexibility because it provides tangible benefits both tothe business and to employees.

“Car Next Door has its headquarters in Sydney, but we also offer several co-working offices around the country and the work from home option. Not allroles can be performed remotely, but if it’s work that can be done outside ofthe office, then we allow that staff member to choose the scenario that bestsuits them.”

Mr Trumbull shares some tips to help get the most out of your time whenworking remotely:

Make sure you have the right tools: You need the right tools for easy andefficient remote working – for starters really good video conference softwareand chat software. Car Next Door uses Zoom for all team meetings, and Slackfor day to day communication, Asana for tasks, Google Docs for shared accessto working documents.

Work set hours: Set up your own daily and weekly structure – and make sureyou stick to it. For example, set your work hours between 8.30am and 5pm soyou don’t end up working 24/7.This also helps with productivity during yourwork hours.

Communication is key: When you work remotely you need to put more effortinto communication than you would normally, because you don’t hear theconversation happening around you. That might mean being more upfront than younormally would be about letting team members, or your boss, know what you’reworking on. A daily check-in works well, something like: ‘This is what I’mdoing today, this is what I did yesterday, this is what is holding me backfrom what I need to do’.

Solid systems in place: It’s important to make sure that everyone in theteam knows what we are doing (OKRs + 4 monthly planning + 2 weekly updates onhow we are progressing) and what is expected of them. Everyone in the team hasa weekly accountability meeting with their manager – what you did last week,what you are doing.

Time zones: It’s really important there is enough actual overlap ofworking hours so there is the ability to send communication back and forth,rather than one person signing off when the other is starting.

Let the team know about your achievements: Just because you’re not workingin the same office as co-workers and bosses, it’s important to let them knowwhen you are kicking goals.

Have a bit of fun: There’s nothing wrong with using your work chat toolsfor a joke, or fun banter, every now and then – this light stuff is a good wayto get to know your co-workers better – even if life around you is tense.

In 2019, Swinburne University found that 83 per cent of city workers who hadworking from home arrangements either “loved” or liked” or “loved” it.

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