10 Challenges When Working Remotely and How to Solve Them

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Undoubtedly, the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the world in more ways than one. As mandatory health protocols were set in place, everyone’s daily routine has shifted into what we know now as the new normal. This also applies to different industries worldwide, as companies were forced to adopt remote working policies.

The quick move to a work-from-home setup was originally considered a temporary solution to continue business operations amidst the pandemic. But now that several industries realise its potential, many are more open to the idea that telecommuting is here to stay even after the global health crisis ends. 

Remote work can grant multiple benefits for both employers and employees, as studies show that it can increase productivity up to 77%. Additionally, you can worry less about essential factors when running a business, such as funding for office spaces and equipment. But despite the pros of adopting this new work model, it can also be a challenge to manage at times.

Without a concrete plan on how to handle your remote work processes efficiently, there are risks that you can face later on. This visual graph illustrates the different challenges with remote work and how you can overcome them.

Challenges When Working Remotely and How to Solve Them

10 Challenges When Working Remotely and How to Solve Them

Working from home can be a convenient way to maintain your business operations. However, because not everyone is familiar with the challenges of this work model, it is crucial to know what they are and how you can solve them. Here are some examples. 

1. Feeling isolated

Working in an office naturally puts you and your employees in a social environment. These elements can easily disappear when working remotely as your communication will be limited to a screen. This can affect your employees’ morale and mental health in the long run when the feeling of isolation seeps in.

What You Can Do:

In this situation, workers can use different types of communication tools to keep up with one another and bond even from a distance. You can encourage virtual hangout spaces and online team-building activities with these tools. 

2. Distractions at home

Unlike in an office setup, there may be more elements at home that can distract you from completing your work. These factors can range anywhere from the sounds of your TV, chats from family members, noises outdoors, or your chores. 

What You Can Do:

A simple way to remedy this is to find a spot in your home where you can work in peace. This includes removing other distracting bits in your area, such as non-work devices, unnecessary noises, etc. 

Once you are situated in your workspace, avoid multitasking. Focus on accomplishing one task at a time so you won’t get overwhelmed by your to-do list for the day. 

3. Overworking

Some workers may find it tough to switch between work and personal hours since they don’t need to travel to and from an office space. Distractions may also cause them to delay progress on tasks, causing them to work more hours than they should, especially when working on tight deadlines. 

This may result in working additional hours for the week and lead to more exhaustion or burnout later on. 

What You Can Do:

It is essential to set boundaries and manage your well-being properly when working from home. At the end of each workday, make it a habit to put away your work equipment and set rules for yourself whenever accepting more responsibility. 

Doing this will help you control your hours better and prevent you from eating into your personal time to rest and relax. 

4. Declining productivity levels

While some workers who are reporting at home experience rising productivity levels, this is not always the case for everyone. Multiple factors can come into play, which can result in a low-energy workday, including repetitive tasks, lack of motivation, or the effects of isolation. 

What You Can Do:

One way to overcome this obstacle is by tracking your workers’ progress and ensuring that they are meeting the minimum requirements. You can also encourage them to set deadlines for themselves and reach out to their superiors when a task seems difficult. Emphasise taking regular breaks as well to avoid burnout. 

5. Uncomfortable work setup

Not everyone has the luxury to supply themselves with a full home office setup. But if a sufficient one is not available, it can cause major discomfort and possibly develop aches and pains in the body. This can negatively impact a workers’ flow if left unaddressed, ultimately affecting the overall team’s performance.

What You Can Do:

A common way of making your workspace more comfortable is by utilising ergonomic equipment. You can practice proper sitting positions, including placing your work screens at a specific angle to remove the risks of developing body aches. 

To change things up a bit, you may go ahead and decorate your workspace to your liking or make use of other rooms in your home.

6. Conflicting collaborations

Physical gestures and signs play a major role in communicating with others. The absence of nonverbal communication makes it difficult to fully understand someone’s intent through a text, email, or call. This can lead to collaboration issues with other team members and hinder the progress of your projects.

What You Can Do:

While communication may not be possible in person, using tools such as video conferencing apps can be a good alternative. This can help encourage your workers to meet more effectively and collaborate better on their tasks, leaving little to no room for miscommunication.

7. Lack of proper tools

In a well-resourced office space, employees get easy access to all the right tools and equipment needed to fulfill their responsibilities. However, this may not be the case for remote workers who cannot equip themselves with essential supplies for the job. 

This may cause delays and other problems when you need to connect to your network and prevent you from acquiring important documents.

What You Can Do:

The use of cloud-based software eases the process of retrieving and sending data to your network regardless of where you are reporting for work. This makes it more convenient for workers to access licensed software and other necessities. You can also look for free management tools and similar applications to help ease your workload.

8. Security issues

Employees working remotely can have access to the team’s network so long as they have the authority to do so. However, if they are using their own devices from home, this can lead to potential risks and vulnerabilities in terms of cybersecurity. Threats like phishing scams, malware, and ransomware are possible if your system is not secured.

What You Can Do:

The first step in preventing this problem is to update the software regularly. You should also implement stronger security practices like adopting an authentication management system. Additionally, everyone in the team should be trained on how to use your tools and access your network correctly.

9. No work-life balance

Maintaining a realistic work-life balance is one of the biggest challenges for remote workers. In most cases, overworking is the case, but other workers may also not be working enough and slack off due to less supervision. This can negatively impact one’s health which, in turn, can affect you and your business. 

What You Can Do:

While it may be more difficult, checking up on your employees under remote working conditions is essential to ensure things are running smoothly. You can better keep track of this through tasks management tools and work timers. 

You can also set up a performance metric to evaluate and verify that your employees are delivering expected outputs.

10. Time management 

One of the key variables to a healthy balance in life is time management. When it comes to working, managing your own time and schedule is a must to accomplish every task on your to-do without causing much conflict or distress in the process. 

Your performance can be severely affected if you do not know how to divide your time and weigh your priorities properly. 

What You Can Do:

Set a schedule and adopt a routine that you can stick to during the workweek. This should be marked down in your calendar to help you organise your priorities and gain a more productive workflow during the day. You may use an application to log all your tasks or go old school with a pen and paper for your to-do list.

Overcoming Work Roadblocks from Home

Since the dawn of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work has faced a rising trend where major industries are now considering making it a permanent solution. This work management is becoming a favourable way to run new operations, as it grants employers and employees great convenience while allowing you to save on overhead costs and resources. 

However, as more companies adopt work-from-home strategies, no one is immune to its many challenges and risks. As such, it is vital to be aware of these factors and be ready to resolve them if and when they arise. This may mean improving your business policies or opting for services from call centres in the Philippines to assist you and your team in your daily operations.

For more information on how your company can better establish a more refined competitive business advantage in the market, reach out to Select VoiceCom today!