How to Organize a Productive Remote Workflow?
It’s not a time to give up or panic. Now is a time to unite and help each other. We’re aware that this is not the first article with such a headline that you’ve seen during the last week. However, as our contribution to the current global situation, in our quick guide, we’d like to state only the concrete facts and provide you with actual solid advice on how to cope with the enforced transition to remote work.
Key Pillars to Maintain Your Remote Work at the Best Quality Level
Regardless of the situation, there is always a solution. In modern times, it’s the distributed or remote cooperation among teams and clients. Every capable small and medium business currently goes into an online mode.
Though, not everyone is ready to face the communication challenges that this way of doing things throws at us. While some managers are experts in remote communication, like we are, others don’t know where to start and which tools to use for the most efficient collaboration. As a genuine remote lean company, we want to share our expertise and help you keep stable business productivity even in such unstable circumstances.
Remote work requires lots of regular communication to avoid misunderstandings and hidden issues. You’re going to communicate with your colleagues even more frequently than you do when working on-site.
- Tools to use: Zoom, Teams, Skype for “Face-2-Face” communication. Zoom.us for example is a free super intuitive tool that can be used either from desktop or mobile and can host a video conference meeting for up to 100 participants, enables to share screens, draw pictures, provide remote control, write messages in chat.
- Whatsapp, Slack — for s short and immediate broadcasting or personal messages, voice recordings, images and videos
- Communication Protocol: follow the Agile methodology to stay flexible and promptly adjust to the changes.
- Seeing each other faces is mandatory, so make sure to carry out video calls and monitor your teammates’ motivation and team’s health status.
- Team building is also a must-have strategy — you can plan casual lunches over Zoom or other team activities that can be done online. You can arrange food delivery with 10bis or Cibus
- Set working hours — you’ve had a work schedule before, no need to change the flow while transitioning to remote business. When somebody wants to take a break from work, just ask them to write a message to the team and update the status when the employee is back.
- Don’t press too hard — let your team have fun sometimes while chatting in group chats. We’re people, not robots, we need to cope with stress somehow. Encourage humor in the groups.
2. Work Routine
- Working remotely, you need to enable the highest level of transparency, visibility, and clarity for task management processes.
- Organize the time tracking process — there are various software tools like screenshotmonitor and HubStuff for capturing and analysing an actual remote work using screenshots, which are self-disciplining for employees and very helpful for employers.
- Toggl or Clockify is always a good light choice also.
- Task management tools to use: Jira and Azure DevOps (if tasks can be planned for 1 or 2 weeks ahead); Trello, Asana, ClickUp (if tasks are non-predictable).
- Atlassian Confluence, Google Docs are great tools for documents sharing and collaboration
- For development teams — use Git source control for distributed teams
- Set goals at the beginning of every week and follow them via scheduled planning meetings at the beginning of the week and a short retro at the end of the week.
- Meetings are critical to keeping in touch with the team, so make sure to show up, encourage people and let them know what you’re doing and whether you all are doing it right.
- The most important pillar is to have daily sync meetings where you’d be discussing: 1) how is the progress since yesterday, and 2) does anybody need any help?
3. Remote Access and Cloud Environments
- First thing first — you will need to setup secured access to your existing servers and computers. There are great and easy-to configure VPN tools like FortiClient, OpenVPN, MetaClient, EndPoint Security VPN, Cisco VPN.
- Configure 2 factor authentication to add an additional security layer and to prevent security incidents.
- However to enable better efficiency, security, and unlimited scalability of remote cooperation, consider storing your servers, computers, repos and labs on cloud.
- Major Cloud Vendors: Microsoft Azure, Amazon, Google, etc.
- Many life-hacking cloud services will become avaliable for you
4. DevOps Equals Productivity (for SW development/testing/operations teams only)
- The more automation is implemented in remote work, the more accurate and faster are the results.
CI/CD DevOps pipelines eliminate a lot of manual work and reduce the amount of wasted teamwork.
- Along with resources and cost savings, automation brings you such benefits as accelerated time-to-market of your product, advanced project management in cross-functional teams, and increased product quality and employees’ performance quality.
- Tools to use: Jenkins, Azure DevOps, Bitbucket, Gitlab/Github, ElasticSearch, Docker, CircleCI, Bamboo, Kubernetes and many more
Summing it Up
So, what ProfiSea recommends?
- First Rule — No stress.
- Second Rule — Ask for advice.
- Third Rule — There are maמy proven productivity boosting tools for every pocket to make your remote workflow easy and reliable. Leverage them!
Almost the whole world is forced to go remote in these challenging days. As a company with lean DNA we have chosen this way of work already in 2015. If you struggle with your remote workflow set up — give us a call at 0543036272 , We’ll be glad to provide you with a free consultation on any related issue you might be facing, to set up relevant tools and to migrate you to cloud if needed.
Take care, keep calm and work from home.
May this crisis pass as easy as possible for you and your business!