Has the recent Coronavirus Pandemic resulted in you having to work from home? Are you worried that you will find it hard to stay motivated while working remotely? Here are our top tips to ensure you can stay motivated and productive without heading into the office. A vast number of UK workers have started to work from home this week as a result of the current Coronavirus Pandemic, many of whom may never have worked remotely before. Remote working can be a challenging thing to do, but it is useful to get used to as more-and-more jobs become home based or require an element of working from home. At home you are more likely to be distracted by your surroundings, and it can often result in an un-productive and de-motivating working environment, something you definitely want to avoid. It is therefore hugely important that businesses and workers do all they can to ensure productivity remains high during this unprecedented time. We sat down with Senior Manager and legal recruitment specialist Michael Bailey to find out how he stays motivated and productive while working from home. Get up, get dressed and stay in a routine! This may seem obvious, but I am almost certain a lot of people that are currently working from home for whatever reason will simply sit around in pyjamas or comfy clothing – something a lot of people often dream about. Whilst this is a novelty at first and fine on the odd occasion, it can have a huge impact on your motivation to get work done. When I am at home I ensure I get up, have a shower and get dressed. Now, this doesn’t necessarily need to be what you would usually wear to work, but getting up and out of what you were sleeping in will ensure you remain in a regular routine – even if you simply change into a t-shirt and jeans. If you really want to stay in the same routine as going to work you might also want to take a brief morning walk and use this as your ‘commute to the office’ – especially if you are used to travelling to work on a daily basis. Not only will this wake you up, it can help you get your brain into gear and ready to start work. Getting changed and sticking to a routine will give you the motivation to get your tasks done, which is something that is hugely important when working from home. Take regular breaks and have a walk You know what it feels like to be stuck in your office for too long – it can be draining and incredibly demotivating, especially if you don’t take any breaks and are particularly busy. The same will apply when working from home. I often find that working from home can be more tiring as many of us have external distractions to deal with as well as the day-to-day; the dog, kids or even housework can play on your mind. For that reason, you should set some time where you can go for a walk – even if you are in self isolation, as long as you stay a safe distance from other people. Think about taking a brief walk around the street or go out into the garden and get some fresh air. Whatever you decide to do, make sure you can step away from your work, and take a few minutes to yourself. It will really help you recharge and give you a much needed boost to get on with the rest of your day. You also need to take breaks throughout the day. Make yourself a cup of tea or coffee, take a full hour for lunch and stretch when you can. All of these things will aid your mood and ensure you can work to the best of your ability. Leave work at work, and home at home If you are due to work from home for a prolonged period of time it is likely you will have set up a space for you to work somewhere in your house – if you haven’t I advise that you do. Giving yourself a distinct office space, and setting boundaries between work and home will be essential – especially if you are going to be working from home regularly or for a long period of time. You should also try to stick to regular business hours and know when to switch off, otherwise you might end up working much longer hours, which won’t be good for your health, productivity or morale. Keep in touch with colleagues, friends and family Working from home and social distancing doesn’t mean you have to stop all contact – far from it. We all need social interaction to keep us sane, so it is hugely important that you stay in regular contact with your team, friends and family while working from home. Working in a sales role I know how important this is for my team. That is why we have committed to have at least three video calls per day to catch up and share success. Staying in all day without speaking to anyone can impact your mental and physical wellbeing, so it is important to get as much social interaction as you can. If you haven’t got the option to speak to colleagues, then think about setting some time to speak to a friend at lunchtime, or when you are taking a coffee break. The important thing here is don’t overcompensate. You want to remain productive, so schedule calls at times that suit your workload, and keep them brief. You don’t want to get caught up talking and not have enough time to complete the work you need to do. Get the right equipment Remote working doesn’t mean you need to forgo all of the equipment you rely on to do your job. Make sure you have everything you need at home to stay productive and continue working as normal. If that means you need to ask your employer for some adjustments, so be it. Your employer has a duty of care to ensure you can physically do your work at home, so ask for anything you think you will need. You might also want to invest in a laptop stand and take home your mouse and keyboard. Not only will this ensure your equipment feels familiar, it will also help your wellbeing long-term saving you from arm, back and neck ache – trust me, it works! If you are working from home and would like some advice or need more ideas on how to stay motivated while working remotely then get in touch, we would be more than happy to talk to you.
During lockdown many of us have learned new ways to adapt to working from home as we social distance in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As restrictions are continually easing and we return to offices, we will be facing new ways of working, including many changes in the workplace – some for the better. Social distancing measures, staggered start/finish times and alternative ways of commuting are all things we expect to see when we go back to the office. However, we will also see a shift in the way companies operate, with traditional ways of working such as 9-5 days, becoming a thing of the past. Here are three other things that may change in the workplace – for the better! Flexible working The pandemic has shown that employees can easily work from home and still effectively communicate with colleagues via email, video conferencing and phone calls. With more flexibility than ever before, companies may find that many will not want to return to the physical office even after the pandemic is under control. Findings from our Employee Benefits Survey show that before the pandemic, flexible working options were the most popular benefits with 62.2% of participants saying they wanted ‘flexible hours’. With workers experiencing this over the past few months, it will be something many will want to hold onto. Although it may still be important for employees to return to the office for reasons such as corporate culture, companies should consider allowing staff to split their time working between home and the office or introduce more flexible working hours, in order to retain the all-important work/life balance. Accelerated digital transformation Some businesses have suddenly realised how digitally unprepared they were after having been forced to accelerate their digital transformation strategies to allow them to continue to operate smoothly during the pandemic. Many are now speeding up their digital plans and adopting new ways of working in order to be more efficient and user-friendly. This digital shift is one of the more positive outcomes of the pandemic as it is driving employees to learn new skills, expand their capability and increase confidence with technology, allowing productivity to improve whilst working remotely. Digital skills have become a necessity for employees working remotely and will likely continue to be a vital skill as we move towards securing stability post COVID-19. Reduced travel time for meetings With less people travelling to work and meetings during lockdown, there has been positive effects to the environment across the world. The pandemic has shown that meetings can be conducted via telephone or video conferencing and so we may see less of a need for all meetings to be face-to-face post COVID-19. Although some meetings will still need to happen in a boardroom, it is likely many will opt for less important meetings to be done virtually. This means that there is less of a need to travel for meetings, which is a real positive for the environment. Another benefit of reducing travel time for meetings includes the cost implications on businesses. With more employees opting to conduct meetings virtually, the need for travel will reduce therefore expenses reducing too. What do you think will change the workplace for the better after the pandemic? If you would like some career advice get in touch with our team today, we would be more than happy to offer some tailored advice. You can also search our latest jobs here.
The coronavirus pandemic is set to change the workplace forever. Since March, most of the population, with vastly different responsibilities and skills, have had to be creative and flexible carrying out their jobs remotely, as best as possible. Many of these people would have previously said that it is impossible to work effectively from home, and while that will have remained the case for some, a lot of employees will have been surprised at how they have been able to adapt and add value to their business. It is fair to say we have collectively made such a huge leap that, even after we return to physical offices, it will be difficult to forget the legacy that lockdown has left on our work. So, which elements of remote working are here for good, even if we are not remote working? As we move back towards traditional office working what aspects of remote working will you be taking with you? Efficient communication Despite the concerns of many employers and employees alike, who expected communication with colleagues to become more difficult during lockdown, a large proportion of homeworkers have reported communication actually improving in the pandemic. In a study by productivity software company Time is Ltd., it was revealed that the average length of meetings for remote workers decreased by 10 minutes. It certainly appears that the use of video meeting software has made it both easier and more acceptable to leave meetings at the appropriate time, without them running over unnecessarily. Not only that, but once we return to the office there should be no reason to turn our backs on the convenience afforded to us by video meetings. While it is difficult to substitute the level of interpersonal connection that can be built by conducting meetings in person, there will still be a place for video meetings in the office. Maintaining this will eliminate travel time but still produce effective results, all the while allowing us to focus on other important tasks that would previously have been left unfinished. Creativity and innovation The coronavirus pandemic has led to previously tech-shy companies and employees having to adopt new technology and processes quickly. This will not have been easy for many companies, but having been put in such an uncertain scenario with no option but to change the way they do business, they will now know they are capable of taking risks and trying new things when the situation demands it. Once we return to the office, many of us will do so knowing that creating and implementing new ways of working that can drive our business forward is a realistic possibility, and a risk worth taking. Trust Working from home has resulted in a requirement for many employees to take on more self-directed work and responsibility, without being able to rely on constant contact with managers. In addition, by nature, remote working has meant that managers and leaders have less visibility of what employees are doing throughout the day, with the knowledge that there may be more distractions — such as childcare and family members — at home. This has meant managers have had to trust that their employees are being productive and getting the work done. An increase in trust and reduction in unnecessary micro-management once we return to the office can be a good thing, and can actually help to speed up the development of employees. Empathy Everybody appreciates that their colleagues and business contacts are going through a difficult period and, as a result, their mental health could be affected. With us not being able to physically see people and check in on them, we have needed to treat them with care and empathy perhaps more than ever before. It is very likely that, once lockdown is over, colleagues will continue to deal with struggles and issues in their lives — whether coronavirus related or not — and we should conduct business with this expectation. Just because people are no longer isolated and threatened by serious illness, it does not mean we should treat them with anything other than the utmost care, empathy, understanding and patience. Flexibility Arguably the best thing about remote working is the flexibility it gives to employees. Removing the daily commute frees up significantly more time in the day for errands, exercise, hobbies, family time or simply more time to relax away from work. In turn, this has meant that staff feel less stressed and more in control of their lives. This will undoubtedly be the biggest thing that workers will miss about being back in the office, but there is no reason why companies should not consider retaining or introducing more flexible working policies for their staff. Many business leaders will now be under pressure to introduce more policies that allow for a healthier work/life balance, including: Long-term remote working policies Flexi-time — flexible start/finish times Compressed hours — working full-time hours but over fewer days Staggered shifts Job sharing Relaxed dress codes These are just some of the positive elements that remote working in lockdown has brought to businesses which could (and should) be protected once we start to return to the office. What do you think the best thing is about remote working that should be kept? If you would like some advice about returning to the office get in touch with our team today, we would be more than happy to offer some tailored advice.
We are thrilled to have been recognised as one of the Best Workplaces™ in the UK by Great Place to Work® for the fifth time. This year we ranked 24th out of 70 companies within the Medium category. Great Place to Work® UK is a consultancy specialising in workplace culture, helping organisations to create exceptional, high performing workplaces where employees feel trusted and valued. It helps employers improve recruitment, retention, productivity and profitability by putting employees at the heart of the organisation, analysing what the staff think and feel about working there and identifying the real issues that need to be addressed. Jo Sellick, Managing Director of Sellick Partnership, merits the success of the business to the staff we employ. He said; “Without our staff Sellick Partnership wouldn’t exist, and I am proud of each and every one of them. I would like to take this opportunity to thank them for all the hard work they do and helping us achieve this milestone once again. “Whilst recruitment can be hard at times, I truly believe we all have a lot of fun, and the friendships and respect that is instilled within our business makes for an amazing and happy place to work. “Being recognised as a Great Place to Work® is hugely important to me. When I started Sellick Partnership I wanted to create a business where people felt valued and respected – which I truly believe we have. We work as part of a massive family, and I am intensely proud of the way everyone comes together to work towards a common goal, which is to provide exceptional recruitment services to our clients and candidates.”
The housing sector like many others has been affected by the current Coronavirus Pandemic. This has meant that professionals within the sector have found themselves either working less hours or out of work for the first time in years. We are having regular conversations with tradespeople and housing staff who are understandably worried about the situation and looking for advice on what they can do to prepare themselves for when the sector returns to normal. Here are our top tips on what you can be doing now to prepare yourself for when things return to some degree of normality. Get your DBS application in A DBS check can take 6-8 weeks to come through, so use this time wisely and get your application in if you need to. This will really improve your chances of securing work when the sector returns to normal. Complete online training courses We are advising many of our clients to work on their skills while spending more time at home. Sticking to a routine and keeping your brain active will be vital to staying motivated. Online training courses including Trades Asbestos Awareness, Manual Handling and Working at Heights are all beneficial and will help set you apart from other candidates in the market. Get yourself on LinkedIn LinkedIn is fast becoming a hub for housing professionals so use this time to get connected. Whether you work in skilled trades, supported housing or housing management, LinkedIn is a great place to network, share experiences and work on your personal brand during this time. Sign up for job alerts and speak to recruiters If you rely on contract work, or have found yourself without a job, use this time to sign up for relevant job alerts and speak to recruitment professionals in your market. Although there may not be as many open vacancies, some organisations are hiring, and recruiters will be able to let you know of anything with the clients they work with during this time. We are still finding that there is a need within some organisations, especially those who support vulnerable people. Our continuing conversations with clients also mean we’d be able to give you informed advice about what needs will arise in the coming weeks Ensure you are compliant This is also a great time to ensure your compliance checks are all completed. Making sure you are fully compliant now will mean you can hit the ground running straight away when a role comes in, making you a more attractive candidate – especially if the organisations needs assistance urgently. Get yourself interview ready If you have found yourself out of work, you should use this time to work on your CV and brush up on your interview skills. Recruiters can help here and will happily offer advice and hold mock video interviews to help get you ready. Whatever you do during this time, it is important to stay positive. The sector will return to normal, and when it does there will likely be plenty of work to go around. So, if you are currently out of work, or find yourself at home with nothing to do, use this time wisely and set yourself up to be very busy when we get through the current pandemic. Can we help? If you still have questions, or need a hand, our team would be more than happy to help. Get in touch with our specialist Housing Consultants today.