How Millennials Are Leveraging Technology to Work From Home
Welcome to the remote worker economy! Not only are more and more people working in gigs as freelancers from home, but even traditional companies are increasingly allowing work-from-home options. From 2005 to 2012, the number of Americans working remotely grew by 80%!
The freedom, enhanced work/life balance and increased productivity delight those who get to work from home. Employers benefit too, as allowing employees to work from home allows them to win top talent into the organization, hire regardless of geography, and keep staff motivated.
Solid communication is vital to encouraging teamwork and effectively meeting goals when employees are remote. To make working at home mimic the seamless connections of being in the office, millennials and the companies they work for are turning to several key technologies.
The benefits of video conferencing are significant. You can have face-to-face communication even in remote working situations, which is vital to avoiding miscommunication. 80% of communication is non-verbal, and signals such as eye contact, facial expressions, and even gestures convey far more than words alone.
Video conferencing is essential to capturing this non-verbal communication and ensuring that your team feels connected, motivated, and well-informed.
Facebook isn’t just for killing time – it can also be used to enhance productivity and communication among remote work teams.
Facebook has several advantages over other communication techniques. First, almost everyone already knows how to use it. Millennials especially came of age in the era of social media and are very familiar with Facebook and its social media cousins.
Secondly, Facebook is free, which is a major boon for smaller companies or organizations who are feeling the budget pinch. It’s simple to create a secret Facebook group that is only used internally, and then invite employees, interns, or other team members to join.
Despite the name, Slack isn’t about slacking off. It’s a team communication tool that helps everyone get out of the email inbox and into a more efficient communication system.
One-on-one communication has its limits. You probably need everyone to know what’s going on with a project, but you may not need to email them and interrupt their workflow. Slack allows team members to update a project, and other team members can see the update on their own time, ask questions, or interject additional information.
Besides being a great communication platform, Slack integrates with many other common project management tools. No matter what your work team is using to manage tasks and accountability, Slack can help you talk about it more transparently. Share files, search conversations, or even initiate a one-on-one private chat. The possibilities are endless.
Project Management Software
Work is about getting things done, and working remotely requires a central location where files, tasks, and updates are stored. Millennials are very comfortable working inside of technology, so project management tools like Asana, Basecamp, or even Trello are easy tools for them to adopt.
Project management software has a host of benefits, including allowing teams to easily collaborate on projects, delegate tasks, and stay on schedule. Because tasks can be assigned to individuals, it’s easy to hold specific team members accountable to meeting their deliverables.
Management and stakeholders are also able to log in, see the progress of various projects, and receive updates on a schedule that works best for them. Project management software makes communication with clients and vendors painless as well.
Millennials are digital natives, and leveraging technology for work is second nature. With remote work growing in leaps and bounds, knowing how to use these four types of technology to work from home helps millennials be productive and happy while avoiding traffic and spending more time with family. It’s a win for the worker and a win for the company.
What technology do you use work from home? Why does or doesn’t your company promote working from home? Share in the comments!