From the Office to Your Living Room: How to Transition to a Remote Setup for Small Businesses

The modern workplace is no longer tethered to one spot. More and more companies in the United States are switching to a more flexible arrangement to allow employees to perform their responsibilities at the comforts of their own home.

With COVID-19 forcing the entire world to stay indoors, it might be time to consider transitioning your business from office to a remote setup. Here is how to do it.

Move Your Systems to the Cloud

The Cloud is ideal for a flexible setup because it allows you and your employees to access everything you need — from data to programs and software — anywhere you are. You do not have to be physically present at the office and using your work. Being at home and using another device, be it your own laptop or even a smartphone, is not a deterrent for you to do your work.

Even HR tasks can be done via the Cloud. ServiceNow’s HR Service Management, for example, which will aid your human resource personnel on their everyday tasks, from employee engagement to portfolio management. You may want to find an implementation partner to integrate your current system to the Cloud to make the transition smooth and painless.

Figure Out Communication

Not everyone will be in the office, but you would want to feel like your employees who work remotely are present at all times. Communication is one of the primary concerns among businesses that want to transition to a work-at-home setup.

Make the most of communication platforms like Slack or Skype for your team to receive instructions or report their progress in real-time.

Ensure Productivity


Nowadays, companies that have a remote setting monitor their employees based on the number of tasks completed rather than the hours they work each day. However, if you want to stick to your old processes, there are programs that you can use to keep track of the amount of time that your team has been working.

Ask your employees to download the tracking tools Toggl, Timesheets, and Tick to the device that they use.

Outline Policies

Before the transition, create a set of instructions and procedures for your team to follow once they start working remotely. For example, do you want all members of your team to be online from 9 A.M. to 5 P.M.? Which tools will be used and how will they use it? These things should be outlined so things will run seamlessly.

Try it Out

If you are fortunate to have the option to test your system before fully implementing it, do it. Have one department work remotely for one day and follow the protocols you have established or, for a limited time, make the entire office work like they are at home. This will allow you to identify areas that are flawed and make changes accordingly.

The trials will also familiarize your employees with the new policies. They can ask questions that they have or make suggestions that will help productivity while at the office together. By the time you make the transition, you have to smoothen out all kinks and the team is ready for the new routine.

With a flexible workplace arrangement, you need trust. You cannot completely monitor how people are working in their homes. You should be able to let go and trust that the people you hired are doing their tasks the best that they can.