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How to Manage the Health and Safety of Your Remote Workers

By Simon Bliss, Managing Director of Principal People, a recruitment consultancy specializing in Health, Safety and Environment.

We're grateful for expert contributors to our blog content. Any opinions expressed within this blog post are those of the author and not necessarily held by Workplaceless itself.

 

Working from home can benefit both employers and employees. One often-cited advantage is increased productivity since workers don’t have to spend long hours commuting. Companies can also save on costs if they don’t have to maintain a large office. In addition, since employees are working from home, they can enjoy flexible working hours. Furthermore, this structure can help companies expand their presence in strategic locations.  

Remote work usually involves performing a job at home, either on a full-time or part-time basis. However, people working at home will also be isolated from their colleagues and have no direct supervision. Another...

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Remote Teams Don't Automatically Equal Diverse Teams

 

By seeking remote hires, companies open themselves up to a global talent pool of endless possibilities when it comes to driving diversity initiatives. However, companies leveraging this strategy need to proceed with caution if they’re hiring remotely as a quick-fix or cure-all for diversity challenges. In fact, during our November Networkplaceless virtual networking event, the overarching theme was:

Remote does not automatically equal diverse, nor equitable, nor inclusive.    

It’s important to note that any discussion of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DE&I) is informed by context, culture, and the experiences of teams and individuals. As our Networkplacless community exemplified, remote teams and remote workers experience unique yet overlapping concerns when in comes to DE&I. As the participants shared their own backgrounds and insights with the group, several common challenges were identified:

  • Thinking remote will "solve" diversity...
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Working—and Learning—From Places We Love

During the first week of November I attended Nomad City 2019, a 3-day event in Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, Spain featuring workshops, keynotes, and discussions about remote work. Conferences are valuable learning experiences, and this event was no exception! I left the event feeling energized, informed, and better connected to a community of people who believe what I believe: remote work is critical to improving work, and by extension, our lives.

To use the conference tagline, “We work from the places we love.”   

Workplaceless’ mission is to positively impact both the supply (remote roles available) and demand (employees seeking remote roles) of sustainable remote work opportunities. We do that by providing engaging learning experiences that prepare people to thrive in remote work—and since these experiences are informed by current trends and best practices in remote work, we make sure that we’re involved in conversations like the ones hosted...

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Workplaceless Partners with Na’amal to Support Remote Employment for Refugees

 

Since Workplaceless first engaged in the mission of teaching remote skill development, a primary aspect of our vision has been to leverage remote work as a way to increase accessibility of employment opportunities for under-served areas and populations. As we set out to advance this goal, we were grateful to be connected with Lorraine Charles, Director and Co-founder of Na’amal, who shares a similar vision of remote work as a means to provide opportunities for refugees and other vulnerable populations.

 We are excited to announce the next phase of our relationship: a pilot Workplaceless training program specific to Na’amal and the refugee communities it supports.

 

Background on remote work for refugees

Charles has studied employment opportunities available to refugees and examined remote work as offering potential solutions.

 “In many refugee-hosting countries in the Middle East, refugees have limited access to employment because of legal...

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How Companies Can Realize the Benefits of DE&I through Remote Work

 

Human resource professionals and hiring managers recognize that an inclusive and equitable workplace is an all-around win. The reason is simple: the more diverse its workforce, the more innovativeand profitable—a company can be. Staying competitive in a given industry and responsive to customer needs is top of mind for company leaders. Remote work has the potential to be a powerful tool for any organization seeking to leverage the power of diversity.  

Remote work is, by nature, location independent. It facilitates a perfect match between employers and prospective employees who might not otherwise connect. Hiring managers are no longer restricted to sourcing employees from a limited selection of local talent. And job seekers can search for the best fit rather than only the most conveniently located opportunity. 

The much deeper and more diverse talent pool afforded by remote work also includes people for whom traditional office-bound roles are...

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Why Remote-Focused L&D Belongs in Your Remote Business Strategy

 

"Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime."

 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, this oft-quoted proverb holds true in modern work scenarios as well. Anyone who has worked with external consultants conducting one-off training workshops and intensive sessions know that the knowledge shared typically begins and ends with those present. 

Far too often, dust winds up settling on even the liveliest learning and development experience, and desires to make big internal changes give way to the inertia of the status quo. It’s unfortunate that such a significant investment in terms of time and money is often allocated toward a short-term impact.

These isolated experiences that lack sustained attention to an organization's culture can lead to a general avoidance of learning and development (L&D) programs. Rather than approaching these efforts strategically, some companies have sidelined training or left it up to those...

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Workplaceless and Cantilever Host the First Remote 5K

Over the summer we talked with our community during our monthly Networkplaceless virtual networking events about health and wellness in remote work — staying physically as well as mentally healthy and connected with remote peers. During these discussions Cantilever came to us with the idea of creating a fun Remote 5K event, and we were on-board to bring it to life. 

Leading up to the event, our training hearts couldn't resist following along with a 5K training plan. Competitors shared remote training photos and inspiration along the way until race day officially arrived on October 11th.

During the live event we welcomed 25+ racers from across eight different time zones. Plus, more racers joined on their own schedule and shared photos with us via social channels. The live 5K race started with participants hopping into a Zoom meeting from wherever they are remotely located in race gear and ready to start. We opened with a couple remarks from Jacqueline Zeller, CMO...

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Sponsorship Creates Pathways for Remote Career Opportunities

The top two challenges highlighted during the September Networkplaceless discussion about remote opportunities were: 

  1. Lack of leaders creating and fostering opportunities 
  2. Lack of relationship building opportunities 

During our October Networkplaceless we welcomed Julia Taylor Kennedy, Executive Vice President at the Center for Talent Innovation, who shared expert advice on how the area of sponsorship could apply directly to remote work environments in addressing these issues.

In all work environments, it’s critical to establish and foster relationships that encourage career growth, however, it’s also necessary to think through objectives and expectations for each relationship. Four categories of professional development relationships include: 

  • Coaching. A coach shares advice on closing discrete skill gaps.
  • Advocacy. An advocate helps a colleague by endorsing an idea or project. 
  • Mentorship. A mentor provides a safe space for...
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Keeping Remote Talent: What's Your Company's Plan for Growth Opportunities?

Stagnancy is an innovation killer. In today’s marketplace, companies and remote leaders that want to encourage and sustain a culture of innovation, recruit and retain top talent, and maintain a competitive advantage must have and communicate a vision for creating career growth opportunities inclusive of their remote teams and remote workers. 

It is vital for leaders to stay tapped into the concerns of their remote employees, who too often are left wondering: 

  • “What kind of influence will I have working from home?”
  • “What if no one notices my hard work?”
  • “How limited are my next potential remote roles?”
  • “How will I ever get promoted?”
  • “Why take that kind of risk at this point in my career?”

They also worry that working remotely puts them “out of sight, out of mind”—uninformed of new opportunities and overlooked for advancement. It is crucial that remote leaders and people operations...

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Challenges in Creating and Finding Opportunities in Remote Work

By Kimberly Bringas, Remote HR Expert

Any opinions expressed within this blog post are those of the author and not necessarily held by Workplaceless itself.

 

A common misconception about remote work is it doesn’t require anything more than giving an employee remote based tools to do their work. “Here is slack, zoom and a working computer, you’re remote now.”—it’s not quite that simple. In actuality, it’s often overlooked that building a successful remote work environment requires the same level of care, attention and proactiveness as an actual office space. As the former Senior HR Manager at Olark, I worked on converting PeopleOps based programs, processes and policies using a specific remote lens. It was during this time I learned that remote and office environments have the same goal of ultimately wanting engaged and thriving employees, however remote requires different approaches. This is profoundly evident in the area of employee...

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