How to Integrate Remote Employees Into Culture, Team, and Processes
The WFH induced pandemic has seen a new wave of easy come-easy go trend in the labour market. Huge swaths of people are leaving their stable jobs, despite cushy salaries and perks. According to the Labor Department, nearly four million people quit their jobs in April 2021 – the most on record.
One of the biggest reasons for this shift is lack of employee integration into company work culture, teams, and processes.
“If you’re in a workplace or a job where there is not the emphasis on attachment, it’s easier to change jobs, emotionally.” - Bob Sutton, an organizational psychologist and a professor at Stanford University.
This has made it challenging for HRs and companies to create sustainable hybrid work models. So how can an organization like yours build a strong, inclusive work culture to retain top talents?
In this article, we explore top challenges faced by organizations to create an all-inclusive remote workspaces, along with solutions from Zavvy to regain your organization’s productivity, well-being, and culture.
1. Remote onboarding experiences are taking a dip
Managers have said it, and employees prove it:
Poor onboarding processes negatively impact a new hire’s experience in an organization. While sending formal paperwork and welcome videos are a mandate – they’re not enough to deliver a personal onboarding experience.
Especially when your remote onboarding program is a mere adaptation of an in-person one. You end up delivering a muddled experience rife with overworking, lack of clarity, and fragmented communication amongst your people.
And before you know it, your top talents have already put in their papers.
Enable your remote employees to feel more included with this onboarding template
An inclusive remote onboarding program is a strong start you can give to your new hire. Not only it relaxes their first day anxiety, but also creates an opportunity to build personal connections with their colleagues. Every single doubt, uncertainty, or question a new hire has, is eased off with an inclusive onboarding process.
To help you get started, we’ve created an onboarding checklist – backed by data-driven research, and results from employee surveys.
Download Zavvy’s Free PDF Onboarding Checklist
Organizations share a common goal – to set up employees for success from Day One. And our onboarding template is designed to do just that. After speaking with industry experts, and taking inspiration from top companies like Google and Microsoft, we created onboarding templates that enable you to deliver a structured, and a seamless experience.
See our onboarding template in action!
From developer onboarding to marketing onboarding, we ensure that each experience is customized for every employee, team, and department. This helps create a welcoming experience that boosts your employer brand, and enables new team members to become productive faster anywhere, anytime.
Here’s a brief overview of your onboarding journey with Zavvy:
- Select our existing onboarding template
- Or create a new one in minutes
- Assign unique onboarding tasks over a period of time (e.g. 30/60/90 days)
- Track your employees' progress and collect feedback
- Make it engaging with tools like Loom, Slack, Loom, and more
With top features like automated reminders and assignments – the benefits of using onboarding software are invaluable. We ensure that every employee shares a similar experience, while saving you cost and time.
See how top companies trust Zavvy with their onboarding processes. Yours could be next, get started with a Free Demo!
2. Leaders are disconnected from their employees
78 percent of employees don't believe their leaders have a clear direction for the organization. But, for any business to thrive in a competitive market, or during a time of crisis, it’s so important that a leader's expectations align with those of the employees.
While leadership is a continuous, and a challenging process, it needs to be strengthened over time. Just like everyone of us, even leaders need training that drives trust and confidence amongst their employees – the key to building a successful remote organization.
“In traditional organizations, leaders can manage by presence — you can see your folks, and you can see work getting done. But when you can’t see your team, when you’re not sure what’s happening, or you literally don’t know if they’re at work or not — you have to redesign how you manage your workforce from the ground up. That forces you to be a better leader and a better manager.” Wade Foster, CEO at Zapier
Leadership techniques need to be practiced, repeated, and mastered.
That's why we designed a micro-coaching program where your managers can regularly learn about leadership techniques trusted by successful thought leaders from companies like: N26, Deezer, and Google.
Through this template, leaders will be nudged to apply these techniques into their routines. Enabling them to become efficient leaders through practice and self-reflection.
Here’s what Zavvy’s leadership micro-lesson template looks like:
Small, bite-sized content spanning from 10 to 15 minutes a week for upto 3 months can strengthen your manager’s leadership skills and practices. They’re structured, and created to seamlessly fit into their busy schedules.
Here’s a sample leadership journey that can be assigned, and customized to your manager’s role, and department. From guiding them to take the right decision at the right time, to preparing them to respond to challenges faster, speak to our experts on how to get started with this leadership template!
3. Isolated employees are less productive
79% of employees feel more isolated since going remote. While WFH is a dream come true for many, a lot of employees are experiencing unanticipated mental health consequences like isolation and burnout.
Companies that fail to keep their employees connected are 5.6 times more likely to have lowered productivity since going remote.
As important as it is for employees to contribute their full potential to a project, organizations need to offer an equal level of support with their mental health.
To alleviate feelings of isolation, companies such as GitLab encourage setting ‘virtual coffee breaks' during work hours for its remote-only team. This not only fosters a collaborative work environment, but also encourages employees to be more participative, and stay motivated.
Revelry have also dedicated a specific “watercooler” channel to encourage break-time conversations.
Create Meetup rituals with Zavvy
The changing work landscape calls for a change in structures and practices, ideally followed in traditional office spaces. Hybrid work models has made it increasingly important for organizations to create opportunities that build high-quality connections, and psychological safety amongst their people.
Add a new ritual to your workflow that brings your people closer together with our Meetup Ritual template. From meeting over a cup of coffee or on a Zoom call, build quality relationships that create a friendly and trusting work environment. To make the most of this program, implement it within teams or across the entire company.
Creating an inclusive remote work culture is just half the battle won. How do you ensure that your employees are benefiting from such connection programs?
One way to know is: sending employee feedback surveys that are crucial in gaining invaluable insights into your employees needs.
With Zavvy, you can easily automate this process and send feedback forms via Slack or Teams.
Some key elements to consider before you implement your remote inclusivity programs:
- Understand your employee’s vulnerability
- Talk to them about their feelings and experiences
- What are their expectations?
- What kind of support do they need?
- How has WFH affected your team dynamics?
Going beyond superficial workspaces is a challenge in itself. And, adding social time to your employees’ calendar just isn’t enough. Whether you want to build an engaging or a motivated team – our connection programs like ‘Conversations that Matter’, ‘Walk and Talk’, and ‘Meet-up Rituals’ are designed to foster a connected workforce.
4. Companies need to combat WFH burnout
The convenience of working from home is not only stressing employees out, but it is also blurring the lines between their personal and professional life. This has exacerbated issues that fuel burnout like excess work, lack of autonomy, a weak sense of community, and lack of engagement.
To compensate for burnout, companies like Hootsuite (a social media platform) announced in May that they would stop work for a week because it had noticed “a rise in depression, anxiety, immersion in loneliness, and uncertainty” resulting from the shift to remote work.”
Despite the allure of wellness weeks, people still dreaded returning to work and replying to twice as many emails – resulting in a faster burnout.
Luckily, even with such challenges at hand, there are opportunities to combat burnout!
Make WFH feel like a perk again with Zavvy
Our resilient backbone template seamlessly blends wellness programs into your employee’s routine. It not only offers them with a much needed boost, but also empowers them to excel in their professional and personal lives.
This science-based template addresses key pain points like stress, overworking, fragmented communication, and disconnection. Spanning across 8 weeks, this template uses LIVE videos, critical thinking sessions, and more – that guide employees to manage and overcome burnout inducing factors.
Some important steps you can take to help your employees facing burnout:
- Offer hybrid work when possible
- Pay attention to time and mental breaks
- And most importantly, check-in with your employees
With Zavvy, you can send automated nudges to your employees, reminding them to prioritize their mental health, take regular breaks, engage in activities that foster overall well-being, and more.
Supporting your people during a stressful time starts with hearing them out, then implementing fair and appropriate practices they can benefit from. If you’re not sure how to get started, speak to our experts to strengthen your remote teams!
Knowledge is more scattered than ever
WFH is well following us into 2022. Making it even more critical for HR leaders to make pivotal information like company policies, onboarding practices, buddy programs, virtually accessible.
Not having a clear steer on who does what, where, and when can lead to ambiguity and feelings of unfairness, especially amongst new hires. Not to mention, it’s a risk companies are taking - over half of them (57%) are operating without a remote working policy.
Centralize all your company information with Zavvy’s templates
The simple act of communicating all the important information to your employees, can lead to a structured, and a smooth flow of work. This is possible when you centralize all your information and documents using our WFH policy template.
Not only does it introduce new hires to your organization, but also frees up your HR managers from redundant processes, unnecessary paperwork, and sending extra emails.
Our WFH policy template is completely customizable, and here’s what it should communicate:
- What are your organization’s WFH policies?
- How many days should an employee work at home and at the office?
- Who to contact if there’s any question?
- How to be productive while working from home?
“A good remote working policy doesn’t necessarily set out rules and what a business expects from employees. Instead, it should give autonomy and empower your workforce to work in the way that’s best for them, ultimately driving productivity and company success,” Paul Burrin, Vice President at Sage People.
To take it a step further, you can even create a separate policy for each area like:
- WFH Equipment
- Working hours
- Goal setting
All of us had to adapt to working remotely. And every employee has their own unique needs. Organizations today need to be transparent about all the company related documents, only then your remote work model can succeed at scale.
Learn how you can streamline your company information using our easy-to-use templates.
Creating meaningful relationships during hybrid times
The widespread shift to remote work has called for leaders to make operational changes at scale. It is so important to design inclusive, and collaborative remote workspaces. Otherwise, it can lead to anxiety, lowered productivity, and even departure from the workforce.
Leaders and HR managers need to understand, and be able to identify which of their employees are facing a burnout, and take proactive steps to protect them from it. This not only benefits the employee, but also the organization as a whole.
At Zavvy, we strive to help you deliver the best employee experience with our onboarding services, connection programs, and so much more. Talk to our experts on anything you want to know about creating and implementing templates for robust, hybrid teams.