Why Training Employees Is Critical in Developing a Remote Workforce

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Transitioning to remote work is never easy during a global pandemic.

While remote work has offered a temporary solution to ensure the safety of employees while resuming normal business operations, many workers found themselves distressed more than ever. Going fully remote has been a long-heated discussion in corporate spaces. Many think that allowing employees to work at home will affect their productivity levels, including the balance between work and personal life.

Because of the rapid transition to remote work, employees are finding ways to adapt to the sudden shift. This led to a huge gap between non-tech-savvy employees and their younger peers. For many decades, on-site working has been the norm for employees, so it’s not surprising if some are hesitant to fully embrace the digital space to carry out their work functions.

Training has never been more important for work efficiency. In fact, training companies such as Realistic Training Options provide national training and assessment services for those who want to excel in their chosen careers or industries. In the same way, training is as important as training on-site employees. Since many were left unprepared for remote work, employers should invest in training inexperienced remote workers.

The successful implementation of remote work doesn’t simply rely on providing laptops to employees and hoping they will eventually adapt. Employers must recognize that remote workers play an important role in the success of business operations amid a pandemic. In this article, we’ll discuss how training remote employees is critical in developing a remote workforce.

Technology training

By default, remote work involves multiple online tools employees need to learn and master. These include communication applications, videoconferencing tools, collaboration software, cybersecurity programs, and the list goes on. If an employee is non-tech-savvy, using these tools all at once can be overwhelming and confusing at the same time.

A remote workforce should be able to interact, share files, and perform other tasks that require collaboration. The lack of proximity is a tough challenge, but technology can close the gap by allowing employees to work outside the office space.

Incorporating technology training into onboarding sessions will empower employees to utilize technology in their work functions. Employers should also create job aids for commonly-used applications so infrequent users of online tools can easily keep up and avoid making mistakes.

When conducting an educational webinar, the discussion should include types of online tools needed for work, tool familiarity and walkthroughs, and meeting expectations with technology. The training should also include how employees can utilize webinar tools more than just for videoconferencing. This will allow users to recognize the tool’s capabilities when interacting on shared platforms and sharing documents, images, and videos.

Communication training

man using laptop

One of the most obvious advantages of working on-site is that communication is instant and much simpler. If you distribute employees away from the central location, communication will suffer. Thus, a remote workforce should adapt interpersonal skills to overcome communication chaos and distance. Interpersonal skills not only include communication but also teamwork and leadership.

For instance, on-site employees engaging in informal, physical interactions should also establish the same level of interaction with those working outside the office. In this case, the design of interpersonal skills training should involve leadership, engagement, communication, and monitoring of goals for remote workers.

Managerial positions should undergo training about ways to ensure collaboration without the need for regular, in-person interactions. They may also undergo relationship management and facilitation skill development to help teams establish norms in remote working while ensuring optimum engagement.

Training on implementing remote work strategies

After establishing learning strategies fit for a virtual environment, everyone must understand how the right implementation strategies and strong delivery are critical to the success of a remote workforce. This means employees should develop the desire and awareness to adopt new behaviors and skills in the new work arrangement.

In the first segment of the training, explain the importance of a remote workforce in building business decisions. Understanding the significance of remote work in this situation will reduce resistance and rally support for the sudden transition. At the same time, cite its potential benefits, such as flexible scheduling, diverse talent pool, decreased overhead costs, and employment value proposition.

Also, identify the weak and strong points of a remote workforce while presenting feasible solutions for each concern. Last but not least, introduce a transition plan so employees can successfully adapt to the new work norm.

As remote working becomes the new norm, employers should prepare employees for possible challenges that may arise in a remote workforce. This can be possible if employers will provide training and equip employees with the right tools and knowledge in maintaining work productivity across distances.

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