Australia’s recent JobKeeper package is estimated to save six million jobs affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Workers will be paid a flat rate of $1500 every fortnight by their employers to keep them afloat. This applies to all full-time and part-time employees, including casual workers who have continuously worked for their employers for at least a year.
That’s great news to hear amidst all the anxiety of no longer having a job to do and the uncertainty of the future. But just because your team can no longer carry on with their normal duties at the moment, doesn’t mean they can’t do some work at home.
Here are 5 ways to keep your team productive while quarantined!
1. Set up online meetings to work remotely
Make it work as (almost) usual only now, the home is the office. Set scheduled video meetings and team catch ups (including mental health checks), have clear work hours and a time to sign off. This creates some semblance of a normal work environment and can give your team some comfort. Think about everything you do as part of your normal day in the office and create a version online as close as possible. Zoom is a great tool for this! You can also set up group chats for instant messaging using programs like Facebook, slack or even skype.
2. Create content for social media (and other mediums)
More people are online for longer times due to being stuck at home. Your business having a presence online is more important than ever. Whether it’s an update on your services, a call for unity in these trying times, or a message of support. Creating these types of content lets your customers know you’re still there for them.
It also makes your team feel like they’re contributing even though they’re not in the front lines. Get creative, how can you inject some fun and personality into your social media presence?
What tools do you and your team use inhouse to make their job easier? Can you turn them into helpful content for your potential customers? For example checklists, spreadsheets etc.
3. Brainstorm customers’ FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Your team “on the ground” interact with your customers the most, so have them brainstorm questions they encounter from customers. Compile the questions and update your website’s FAQ page and make sure your customers are aware it’s updated. You can also turn this frequently asked questions into content for your website or social media.
4. Take a course and learn new skills
Taking online courses and learning new things is a good way to spend that extra time. This quarantine won’t last forever and it’s best to emerge from it better than ever. Doing it together as a team can even be a fun and less-pressured experience. What areas do your team have an interest in upskilling in? Can they do some online training while receiving the Job Keeper payment so you have more skilled team members when they can return to work?
There are lots of places to do online learning for free or low cost :
TAFE NSW are offering a number of free courses. Free TAFE courses in NSW
Like this one on collaborating and leading dispersed teams
There are also free university courses called MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) At that link there are free courses for Business and Management, Communications, Computing and IT as well and lots of others – like nursing and Psychology.
Udemy have over 100,000 of courses in their platform covering all sorts of skills many of them for around $20.
5. Empower your team
Share positive news, supportive ideas, inspiring case studies, and more to your team to keep them empowered.
Reinforce your company values to create a sense of community. Plan ahead on how you’ll continue in the future and anticipate the changes your work will encounter when it’s time to go back outside. Include them in the decision making of what to do while they can’t do their usual role.
Now is an enormous opportunity to create an amazing culture and powerhouse team. Upskilled, connected and ready to help your business bounce back quickly when the time is right.