'Telecommuting' means having flexible working arrangements that allow your employees to work from home. It's become a popular way for cutting back on costs such as office space, equipment and furniture.
It has its advantages. But the tricky part is how to manage these employees and avoid the 'out of sight, out of mind' mind-set. Use our ten ways to keep them feeling like a key part of your company.
Let's look at how you can implement this successfully…
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Follow these 10 tips to make telecommuting a success for you
1) Make sure your employee has the resources and equipment he needs to do his job at home.
2) Add him to the payroll. You must make the same deductions and contributions that you do for all your other employees.
3) Explain your policies on when, where and how the equipment the company owns can be used.
4) Agree on the number of hours or days he must have with clients, when he'll come to the office, attend company events, etc.
5) Specify that he must maintain his normal workload.
6) Outline and explain the tasks he has. Include these as part of his KPI's.
7) Let him know that you're monitoring his performance by having regular reviews.
8) Ensure he knows who to contact if any work-related issues should crop up or when he needs help.
9) Put a policy in place that says if he can't work because he's ill, or has family responsibilities, he must report it in the normal way. He'll also have to take sick or family responsibility leave as a normal employee would.
10) Explain the policies and procedures for annual (and other) leave also apply to him as with office-based employees.
Now that you know how to make telecommuting work for you and your employee, use these six easy steps to draw up your telecommuting policy…
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Find out how here.
Make telecommuting to work for you, by drawing up your office policy in 6 easy steps:
1) Define what telecommuting means within your business. Mention that it's only for those whose job duties it's suited to, and not for those who interact with clients regularly.
2) Decide who qualifies. You can do this according to levels of staff, or consider it on a case-by-case basis according to the specifics of the job.
3) Agree on the 'office' hours he must work each day. Make it clear telecommuting isn't to him extra time to work for others, or run his own business from home.
4) Agree on period for the arrangement. Decide if it's for a specific task, e.g. while he's working on a fixed-term project that he can do from home, or if it's for the entire time he works for you.
5) Be clear about how this will/won't affect tax
on his salary. Tell him you'll keep deducting tax
from his salary. Explain that it's his responsibility to get tax
advice on any tax
breaks he may be entitled to by working from home.
6) Outline the specifics of using company property at home. If you provide the equipment (E.g. a fax, telephone, and access to email) he must agree in writing that it's only for the time of the arrangement and he'll give it back at the end.
Put a clause in your agreement which will hold your employee personally liable for missing or damaged equipment you've provided.
Until next time, happy telecommuting
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