5 Work-Life Balance Tips for Your WFH Employees
While the end of the pandemic remains uncertain, flexible work arrangements remain in effect for many companies. The Malaysian government recently announced that the work-from-home (WFH) policy for the public sector has been extended to all states.
According to our latest COVID-19 Job Report, 58% of Malaysian companies have required their staff to work from home. Because of this, 50% of Malaysian employees are now working longer hours at home, with 42% of them also taking on more household responsibilities.
While working from home may be the best solution for employee safety, how can HR departments promote work-life balance to ensure employee engagement and further motivate them to achieve? We name five ways.
Goal-setting is key.
Don’t just work hard, but work SMART. Set goals and targets for your employees that are
This will give them greater focus and enable them to use their time and resources more productively. Move from task-based goals to result-based ones, determining performance by outcomes instead of hours worked. Establishing weekly goals will give your team a stronger sense of structure and direction. This way, expectations that need to be met will be clear from the get-go.
Keep communication lines open.
As you ensure your employees are accessible during this period, also make sure that you are available for them as well. Emphasise that they can come to you with any concerns, feedback, or suggestions regarding their WFH setup. Letting your employees know that you are always within reach--and ready to listen--is reassuring.
Transparency is key, especially when it comes to communication. Make sure that you are honest with them, especially about more sensitive areas like job security and other fluid changes in the workplace.
Highlight work-life balance.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, and maybe your employees, too. Flexible work arrangements blur the lines between office and home, so it is important to establish boundaries that encourage work-life balance.
It can be as simple as scheduling casual online get-togethers where everyone talks about anything but work. You can also have a weekly huddle focused on employee recognition, boosting morale as team members recognise the efforts of their colleagues.
Go one step further and encourage teams not to contact colleagues during their off days or vacation leaves. Your employees would appreciate that after a week of being attached to their computer or mobile phone.
Do not micro-manage.
When you can't see everyone at their desks, it's tempting to ask for frequent updates, but do your best to resist. Let your employees feel that you trust them, instead of beeping them to ask if that update from five minutes ago changed in any way. If it makes you feel more comfortable, establish ground rules that include how much colleagues update, and make sure you hold up your end of the bargain too.
Encourage a learning environment.
Given all the disruptions caused by the pandemic, employee training and development may have fallen by the wayside. But, learning doesn't have to stop just because everyone is working from home. Encourage them to grow their skills and learn new things by sharing tips about where to get learning opportunities or even better, move your training modules to the digital space. Learning and mastering a new skill can be a fun, confidence-boosting experience--something we all need during these uncertain times.
If there is one thing that the pandemic continues to highlight, it’s that change is constant. And while everyone is on the same boat right now, let's do what we can to provide our employees with the necessary support, encouragement, and resources.
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