The greatest asset of a successful business is its people. To become the best of the best, your people must be happy, engaged, and have values aligned with those of the business you conduct. This puts a lot of pressure on the HR department, who is responsible for managing this particular asset effectively.
The role of HR in a 100% remote company goes above and beyond the expected responsibilities of an HR department to be ranked accordingly. Here’s what that looks like.
Giving the People What They Want
The HR Department in a 100% remote company will give the people what they want, within reason of course. This means listening and requesting feedback from employees. What do they like about their work environment? What bothers them? What are their ideas for improvement? A successful HR department will listen with the intent of hearing, rather than responding with the company line. Ideas will be taken into consideration, and even if they aren’t relevant to the direction of the company, employees should at least feel heard.
Giving the People What They Need
Unfortunately, what employees want and what they need are not always the same thing. They may want long weekends every week, but that isn’t what they need to succeed in the business. However, you can give them their entitled Federal holidays (view this year’s list at https://www.ontheclock.com/2018-Federal-Holidays.aspx) and devise an incentive program that rewards them with an earned day off as a reward for productivity.
A lot of HR’s work isn’t attractive and seems meaningless to employees. However, strong policies that will ensure everyone has a positive work experience and is kept safe in the event of a conflict is what they need. If that means being the bad guy sometimes, so be it.
Developing a Workplace Culture
People tend to spend more time with their coworkers than they do with their family. It is up to HR to cultivate a strong virtual workplace culture that makes employees feel good about sitting in front of the computer every day. Each year, we move further away from the solid line between work and home life, partially due to the increase in remote work opportunities and flexible work hours that are quickly becoming the societal norm.
Having a clear understanding of the workplace culture and being able to convey it to employees is an essential part of HR’s role in a fully remote company. Knowing the culture not only helps make strategic plans on the executive level, but can help improve employee engagement and prevent wrong hires. For example, if during the hiring process you realize that someone’s values will not fit in well with the organizational culture, you can avoid hiring them and experiencing turnover a few months down the road.
Coaching for Advancement
One of the main roles of HR in a remote team is to assist with continuity through advancement. Take time to understand the goals of your people and offer coaching to help them advance. An employee who feels respected and empowered will work harder for your organization, which ultimately affects the bottom line.
Keep striving to make your business a place where people enjoy working and you will attract top talent and engaged, motivated individuals.