Training for Remote Work Success: Skills Your Team Needs
The move to remote work – whether full-time or as part of a hybrid model that includes in-office time as well – has many upsides for both employers and their workers. But it does require a shift in skills for many employees if they’re not accustomed to working remotely.
Some workers are better suited to working remotely than others thanks to their soft skills, like knowing how to communicate effectively over multiple digital mediums. However, any employee can be a successful remote worker if they’re given the right support and training to develop the skills they need. Upskilling your team with the right training for remote work can be done in many ways – pick the methods that work for your team and get ready for remote success.
Some of your employees might feel right at home transitioning to a mostly or fully remote working style. However, those who don’t need some extra coaching from managers in order to succeed. Begin by asking employees what they feel uncertain or uncomfortable about in the shift to remote work, and develop a plan to guide them through developing those skills and adapting to remote work best practices.
Each employee may require different training for remote work to build the skills needed to succeed. So be sure to customize your coaching to each individual to see the most benefit. To get the maximum benefit, coaching should be an ongoing process past the transition to remote or hybrid work and into the future.
Hard Skills Training
Remote work requires substantial knowledge of how to use technology, which can be intimidating to workers who are less experienced in this area. You can help bridge this gap by offering training or coaching on technological skills such as how to effectively use project management software or communication tools like Slack, and explaining how to get help remotely.
Don’t assume employees know how to use the necessary tools. Proactively ask how they feel and what help they’d like. It’s tempting to make assumptions like “all Millennials are tech wizards,” but each employee has different experiences and capacities. Check to be sure you’re giving them what they need.
Soft Skills Training
Employees need more than hard skills to get their work done. The most critical competencies for working remotely are soft skills. Remote employees must follow through on their projects, monitor their own performance, and set their daily structure.
You can help employees develop these skills as part of their training for remote work success. For example, you can coach them to establish reasonable goals and metrics around how they spend their working time. Then help them find a system that works to achieve those goals. You can also instill the importance of following through on tasks until the end, and offer assistance and guidance to employees who struggle with this.
If you’ve noticed large skills gaps among your employees when you check in with them, your employees or even your whole team could benefit from online courses to close those gaps. With the rise of online learning, encouraging your team to take courses is one of the best ways of training for remote work.
Your company may have existing courses you can repurpose, or you can direct employees to online resources such as Linkedin Learning, Udemy, or Coursera to find the training that will help them be successful in working remotely. This training could include courses to understand software that will help them work online or develop new soft skills like communicating more effectively.
When you’re looking for the best ways to help your employees succeed with a new working model, training for remote work is essential. Helping your team adapt to a remote or hybrid way of working comes with challenges but also a worthwhile payoff. If you’ve shifted to a virtual system of hiring as well, learn more about how to choose a remote hiring platform that’s right for your organization.