Build a Sense of Community for Your Remote Workers

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Pascal Leclerc of Genesys shares his advice for building a sense of community for your remote agents.

Given today’s context, many companies are adjusting to the idea of a remote workforce. Contact centres are no exception to this new reality.

Fortunately, technology offers a wide range of possibilities.

More than ever, it’s important for businesses and remote workers to communicate, collaborate and maintain business continuity effectively.

Yet while the benefits of remote work are immediately clear for employees, the advantages for employers aren’t always as obvious.

Here’s a look at three key benefits of remote working for both employees and employers.

Employee benefits:

  1. Less time spent commuting
  2. Better work–life balance
  3. Promotes personal well-being

Employer benefits:

  1. Increase in productivity
  2. Employee retention
  3. Workforce flexibility

Cost savings is another benefit that applies to both employees and employers.

From lower or no commuting costs to reduced office space and lower attrition, it’s a clear advantage from remote working.

The number of businesses offering remote working options to employees is constantly increasing.

Nevertheless, it still comes with its challenges, especially if the need to do so is sudden or unexpected.

Here are a few frequent remote-work obstacles and ways to overcome them.

Time Management

Working from home means many distractions: it’s very easy to get sidetracked.

So, some great advice is to:

  • Set work hours for yourself and your family members
  • Make sure to separate your work and personal time
  • Log out of work tools at the end of the day

I set a clear work schedule with my colleagues and family. And I make sure I’m available a few times a week for team members in other time zones.

I also make it a rule to take breaks periodically during the day. A 15-minute walk outside on a sunny day can really recharge you.

Communication Breakdown

When you’re not sitting alongside your colleagues, it can feel like you’re not getting the full picture.

Impromptu deskside coaching as well as quick policy or performance updates are somewhat impossible when working remotely.

This is why most teams adopt messaging platforms. Users of these platforms can take advantage of the built-in chat feature, making it easy to communicate efficiently with everyone.

FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)

Working remotely can feel lonely; the fear of missing out is something to consider. It requires creative solutions to be sure there’s a sense of camaraderie that expands beyond the contact centre’s production floor and reaches remote workers — wherever they are.

Great communication helps everyone feel included, but businesses need to nurture their employees’ level of engagement, motivation and sense of belonging.

Typically, supervisors play an important role in motivating and encouraging their agents. Managing a remote team requires alternative methods and tools to be sure everyone feels like part of the team.

Creating Camaraderie and an Immersive Experience

In any business, team spirit and a sense of belonging are important elements of success.When employees feel like a part of the team, they’ll be engaged and motivated to give their best.

Team leaders also play a huge role in creating team unity, keeping everyone motivated and supporting the company culture.

Leverage gamification to create a sense of camaraderie that comes with working with actual people in a team — even when everyone is remote.

In its simplest terms, gamification is defined as applying game-design principles in non-game contexts.

Although this remains true, the modern application of gamification is much broader, bringing together game mechanics and social media concepts, communication, participation and recognition in an easy-to-use, fun and immersive experience.

  • Video games bring people together with communities that have millions of active users.
  • Gamification is widely used in learning, social media and marketing.
  • Smartphone games and apps use games and social media concepts to create adoption and camaraderie.

Contact centres are not strangers to gamification. Contests and incentives are widely used in the industry.

Although creating and supporting such initiatives can be complicated and requires a lot of time and effort, they are useful because they engage and motivate employees and, ultimately, improve performance.

Author: Robyn Coppell

Published On: 20th Apr 2020 - Last modified: 21st Apr 2020
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