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News article21 September 2023European Labour Authority, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion

Remote work: A guide for new employees

Remote work is the new normal, with many companies offering this benefit to their employees. However, it can be challenging to navigate, especially for new hires. Here are some ways you can make a success of remote working.

Remote work: A guide for new employees

Create a comfortable and productive working space

Working remotely can be tricky, especially if it is the first time you have done so. It is important to think about how you want to set up your working environment. If you are working from home, try to choose a designated work area that is free from distractions. Ideally, you do not want to work in your room, as you want a clear differentiation between work and home life. It would be a good idea to invest in ergonomic furniture – consider this as an investment rather than an additional expense. A comfortable chair will do wonders for your productivity. You want to make your workspace a place you look forward to work in. Try personalising your space with some plants, art or other items that make you feel inspired and productive.

Maintain a healthy work-life balance

A healthy work-life balance is important whether you are working remotely or not. However, there are some things to consider in your new working arrangement. The line between work and life is blurred when working remotely, so it is key to set clear boundaries for work and personal time. Set defined work hours and try to keep to them – it can be easy to work beyond working hours, especially from the comfort of your home. Working in a confined space can lead to burnout and fatigue, so it could be a good idea to use your lunch break to get some fresh air and exercise. This will help you stay energised and healthy.

Be aware of distractions

Distractions and interruptions are commonplace when working remotely. You may be sharing a place with your family or housemates, which can prove difficult if they have different working hours to yours. Intruding pets or mail delivery are challenges that we do not have to contend with at the office. So, if you are working in a noisy environment, use noise cancelling earphones to better focus on your work. It is important to set boundaries with family members or housemates. Let them know your working hours and when you are free to socialise.

Our phones are a major distraction, so turn off app notifications and social media alerts during work hours – you will be surprised how much time we lose scrolling through these apps.

Stay focused and motivated

Working remotely can bring the flexibility and freedom that workers look for in the current job market. However, it can be difficult to stay focused and motivated due to isolation, procrastination and fatigue. There are a few strategies you can employ to combat this. You should dress appropriately and smartly to get you into the right mindset to stay focused. To combat isolation, you should stay in touch with your colleagues to foster a team environment. Schedule regular check-ins, collaborate with your clients and take advantage of social events to feel connected and motivated.

Feedback from your manager is essential for your career development and professional growth. Check out the best ways to respond to and act on your manager’s feedback in a positive and effective way.


Related links:

The secret to using your manager’s feedback as a catalyst for growth


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