Rebecca Jackson
3 minutes length
Posted: 23rd November 2020

Five ways to stay connected when working remotely

As we tackle our second national lockdown, many organisations are likely planning for employees to continue working remotely for the long term.

Employees tend to fall into two camps when working from home – they either love it or hate it. Either way, an extended period of working away from colleagues can be challenging for some.

So, we’ve put together five ideas of how you can keep a sense of community and camaraderie while your people are working remotely…

1.Virtual huddles

Set up a daily video or conference call for you and your team to have a friendly chat. Perhaps give each team member three minutes to talk about anything they want – as long as it’s not work related. It may sound small, but it’s a sure way to help keep a feeling of community going. Conversation starters include weekend plans, funny things your pets have been doing, or the best act of kindness you’ve heard about during this difficult time.

2. Steps to success

With no meeting rooms to travel to or colleagues to go find, it’s easy to stay inside all day when you work from home. So why not set up a team walking challenge where you and your colleagues track how many steps you each take separately during your lunch break. As well as promoting getting a dose of fresh air, it could also encourage healthy competition (quite literally…).

3. Lunch and learn

A sure-fire focal point of the day in any office is what everyone’s having for lunch. Like your huddles, you can still eat lunch together through video call. But with more amenities at home, who knows what exotic delights your team will be able to create. So why not take this a step further and start a #WhatsCooking chat? Encourage your colleagues to share their at home lunch recipes and photos – you could even hand out a ‘lunch of the week’ award.

4. Game time

There are loads of online team games you can play remotely, including puzzles, word games, and action games. Set up a tournament to keep spirits high, and there are business benefits too – gaming can help encourage good team communication, problem solving and collaboration.

5. Communication, communication (and more communication)

One of the most essential things to help your teams adjust to working remotely is to keep company communication going strong.

Share a schedule of when and how you’ll be sharing the latest updates – for example a midday ‘all employee’ email, a dedicated section on your intranet, or regular team video or conference calls.

Depending on the technology you have available, you could set up a feed or email inbox so your employees can ask questions or make suggestions on the information that will help during the uncertainty the COVID-19 outbreak is causing.

How IRIS Cascade can help

Many employees have reported improved wellbeing as a result of working from home. View our free infographic to discover the benefits of our new found remote working culture.

IRIS Cascade acts as a central portal for the key information your people need in this uncertain time. Our self-service functionality enables your employees to update Cascade themselves, including their own absence records and contact details.

Stay in touch with IRIS Engage

IRIS Engage, our employee engagement solution, provides HR teams with an easy and cost-effective way of maintaining communication company-wide. The platform offers a branded microsite, on which staff can access company policies, documents and information, and allows teams to circulate messages (via text and email) to individuals, teams and specific groups.