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How to Motivate Remote Employees?

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The modern workforce is rapidly changing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During this worldwide health crisis, many firms, large and small, have adapted to remote working and included it in their strategies. Today, remote working has become the standard. The pandemic appears to have transformed the workplace, requiring employees to work from home.

According to a survey, 91 percent of employees choose remote work because it allows them to maintain a work-life balance. Providing employees with the motivation to work without their presence physically can be a daunting task. In these challenging times, you aren’t having clues to motivate remote employees, right? 

Worry not! We’re here to assist you in coming up with the best ways to motivate remote employees.

10 Ways to motivate remote employees

Motivate remote employee

1. Foster a sense of belonging

Start by creating a virtual office for your employees to keep them motivated and connected. The organisation should develop an online community for employees to encourage professional and personal talks among colleagues by investing in technological tools such as Virtual Conferencing Software and Collaboration Tools. It will provide employees a sense of belonging and connection, as well as encourage them to be more productive. It’s also crucial to allow employees to maintain personal relationships while working from home.

Tip: To keep employees connected informally, organise virtual team activities (such as quizzes) or breaks.

2. Improve the overall communication

One of the most difficult aspects of working with remote teams is figuring out how to communicate; because people aren’t in the same room, there’s always the risk of things getting lost in translation. If your entire internal communication strategy does not prioritise guaranteeing communication clarity, your remote employees may have a recurring communication gap and low engagement.

The trick will be to make use of technology. Motivate remote employees to use instant messaging tools such as Hangouts and Slack to have rapid and casual chats. Regular check-ins and open lines of contact will keep your team connected and informed about what’s going on.

Tip: Colleagues can benefit from informal communication to stay connected as a team.

3. Encourage a growth mindset

Employees may feel uninspired if they are stranded at home and cut off from the outside world owing to a lock-down. You may encourage your remote workforce as a manager or team leader by encouraging them to pursue personal and professional development opportunities.

Embracing a positive mindset means that there is always more room to learn and improve, regardless of your position or stage in your work. You may create an environment where employees focus on their potential rather than their performance as leaders and managers.

Develop a culture of learning and encourage employees to push themselves and learn new skills to advance their careers.

Tip: Motivate remote employees to learn a skill or two that will help them advance in their careers while they are working remotely.

4. Develop a visual scoreboard

You’ve established effective internal communication and set clear objectives for your personnel to meet. Your employees, on the other hand, require insight into their development. Create a Visual Scoreboard that displays individual and team progress and encourages employees to meet their objectives.

A Visual Scoreboard can also be used to define each team’s priorities and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Managers and teams can use modern programs like Trello to assign tasks and collaborate, or they can use statistics and graphics to communicate weekly or monthly progress.

Employees will stay connected, engaged, and inspired to do their given responsibilities if weekly and monthly meetings to review the scoreboard and important targets are held.

Tip: Use analytical tools with visual scoreboards to show employees/teams where they stand concerning others.

5. Offer flexibility and focus on accomplishments

Working from home adds an extra layer of responsibility to managing both office work and household chores for most individuals. Micromanaging “office time” by managers can make employees feel weighed down and uneasy.

In this case, allowing flexibility and focusing on results will help you manage your remote staff more effectively. The wider group and individual performance tasks/goals should be highlighted. Provide the staff with a clear goal and a deadline for achieving that goal. Employees will be more driven to accomplish their goals.

Tip: Encourage employees to achieve their objectives by giving them the freedom to schedule their own time.

6. Recognise employee achievements and efforts

Recognising employees’ efforts and accomplishments should be a key component to motivate remote employees. One of the most effective ways to keep staff engaged is to give them recognition. Employees feel a sense of satisfaction when their effort is recognised, which keeps them engaged and inspires them to perform their best.

Employees who work from home may feel lonely and less connected. As a result, it’s critical to make every attempt to keep them engaged to retain their productivity. Recognising their efforts and accomplishments might increase their self-esteem and work motivation.

7. Offer improvised feedback

Any business that wants to grow and succeed requires continual input in the form of feedback. Employees, likewise, demand real-time and continual feedback to grow and progress.

Fostering an open and honest feedback culture for your remote staff will encourage them to be more involved and forward-thinking. Managers can plan a one-on-one session with their staff and share their perspectives on the employee’s performance for an effective and inspiring feedback system.

Because the one-on-one meetings will be virtual during this global crisis, make sure you choose your words and tone of voice carefully when communicating feedback. A calm, cool, and understanding tone of voice, as well as the appropriate phrases, will be more beneficial than one that is abrupt.

8. Leverage the power of technology

Today’s remote working environment necessitates the use of technology to keep the business together and connected. Building online groups and holding virtual meetings has never been easier thanks to digital technologies.

There are a plethora of digital tools accessible to help you with your online collaboration efforts. Choose tools that are user-friendly and adaptable across the organisation based on your and your employees’ needs.

Employees who work from home require email, video conferencing, instant messaging, task-specific software, and access to online data storage, among other things, to be productive. Invest in solutions that make it simple for employees to participate in work activities and complete their responsibilities.

A virtual meeting that is regularly interrupted and does not allow for efficient employee sharing will not only disrupt the meeting but will also discourage employees from being proactive.

TipMotivate remote employees to purchase a high-speed internet connection for their homes.

9. Trust your team

Once you’ve outlined your team’s roles and responsibilities, as well as your expectations, you must trust them to complete the task. It is impossible to approach a remote worker during the day and ask what they are working on.

You can only motivate and steer your people on the right path as a manager. After that, you must put your faith in your personnel to complete the task.

Tip: Wait for your staff to respond instead of pinging or contacting them many times during the day.

10. Workplace competitors

Workplace competitions are a tried-and-true method for motivating a group. Friendly competition inspires hard effort and innovation. Having an audience also motivates people to achieve.

Onboarding the newest clients, closing the highest-value sale, having the fewest errors, or doubling creative production are all examples of workplace competitions. Motivate remote employees to feel more connected to the firm and their coworkers by participating in remote workplace competitions. Not to mention, contests can help you get out of a work-from-home rut.

Few more tips for motivating remote employees:

  • Inspirational quotes

Inspirational quotes can provide remote professionals with small bursts of enthusiasm. You can use these quotes to open or end Zoom meetings, add a thought-provoking remark to a group email, or post a quote of the day to Slack. Members of your team can take turns sharing their favourite phrases, and you can even recite them as a group mantra.

  • Digital buddies

Another teammate can sometimes be the most effective way to motivate remote employees. In remote offices, launching a digital buddy program encourages accountability and develops camaraderie. Managers couple up colleagues first. 

Those partners then check-in, discuss, bounce ideas off of each other, share updates, and cheer each other on through video conference or chat regularly. These meetings assist employees to build relationships with their coworkers and inspire them to complete assignments on time.

  • Online award shows

Employee recognition for remote workers takes the shape of online awards shows. While many team members work without expecting anything in return, a pat on the back now and then is good. Awards provide goals for employees to strive for, and award ceremonies provide an opportunity for virtual coworkers to get together, spend time together, appreciate one another, and have fun.

Managers can give out traditional awards like “rookie of the year,” “team player,” or “top performer” during these events, as well as more unusual distinctions like “Zoom meeting zen master,” or “most likely to respond to your email instantly.”

Organisers can urge a black-tie dress code, ask attendees to exhibit thematic virtual backgrounds, and allow employees to expense a lunch to make the presentation more interesting.

Winners can get rewards such as certificates, email gift cards, and trophies after the show. Attendees might also be encouraged to send congrats and pleasant words to their colleagues by the leaders.

Final words

With the ongoing pandemic, you have little to no choice except to hire remote workers. To understand how to motivate remote employees, you must first understand why remote working is so popular right now and how you may join the trend. However, motivating your remote staff when you don’t have any face-to-face engagement with them might be difficult. Health benefits, care packages, becoming innovative with technology, experimenting, and pushing your employees to outdo themselves every day are all important in this regard.

There are a few other considerations to bear in mind when employing new remote workers. You must check to see if your efforts are effective. Finally, include your suggestions that are appropriate for your organisation’s setting. Make your special blend to improve remote working motivation and urge your company’s strength to strive for optimal efficiency.

SumHR is a cloud-based HR software and Payroll software that is modern, fun, and exceedingly simple to use. It’s a cloud-based system that streamlines HR and payroll processes for startups and small and medium businesses. To get your free HRMS click here and use the code FREE.


  1. What issues happen if remote employees aren’t inspired?

Poor employee performance is one aspect that has a direct cause and effect link with a lack of employee motivation. If you don’t motivate your staff after that, they will quickly lose interest in working, especially now that they are in quarantine.

  1. How to access the success of your remote employees?

(i) Quality measures of success motivation:

There are a few easy methods for determining remote working motivation. Examine how many vacation days they take, how timely they are at work, how willing they are to communicate with other team members, and how often they present their ideas. These are telltale signals that an individual cares about his profession.

(ii) Quantifiable measures of success motivation: 

When it comes to quantitative indicators, employee surveys are a tried and true method. However, avoid making staff surveys overly lengthy. While assessing your remote employees’ motivation, you don’t want to demotivate them. 

When taking surveys, use the Harvard (Harvard Business Review) route, which gives you a motivation score by taking into consideration numerous elements and then calculating them.

  1. How can we train and empower managers to manage employees remotely?

You can manage your employees in the following manner:

(a) Ensure regular check-ins.

(b) Communicate effectively.

(c) Conduct brainstorming sessions. 

(d) Ensure one-on-one personal interactions. 

  1. What are the questions to ask remote employees to attract motivation among them?

(a) Are you feeling productive as you work remotely?

(b) What are the challenges you are facing working remotely?

(c) Have you developed any new skills working at home?

(d) What is your daily routine? 

  1. Are video conferencing apps worth the shot for remote employees?

Yes, video conferencing apps like zoom, google meet, and others are quite trendy. They not only ensure proper communication but also provide insights on ways to interact with employees remotely.

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SumHR is a flexible and configurable end-to-end HR Software/HRMS which help HR teams automate the HR Processes, and improve the employee's HR experience.

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