Can’t tell if my employees are working

In short: Remote work lends itself to a task-based work monitoring approach. Use tech and simple processes to see what your team is working on.

It’s different running a business that is predominantly remote. You used to be able to walk past someone’s desk or have full-sight of their computer so you’d know if they weren’t working and you’d know if they weren’t even in the office. With remote work, you don’t know if people are working 100% of the time unless you install screen-monitoring software on their computers or implement a policy for webcams on 100% of the time during work hours. The issue with tracking in this way is that it erodes trust, so what is the alternative?

By moving to a task-based work environment and using software to work collaboratively, you’ll have visibility into what work is completed during the week. You might still have a weekly meeting to discuss any potential roadblocks to getting work done but can see in real-time what tasks are completed, see links to completed work, see completion times and monitor SLAs across all your staff. By careful about what you measure (i.e. number of tasks can lead to employees breaking down their work into a large number of tasks), give ongoing feedback on work and, over time, you’ll develop a culture where you can “trust but verify”.