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Our Guide to Working Remotely – an ever-evolving tool to support our people

Over the past few months, our People Experience team has worked closely with our people and leaders to create a guide to help us to work from home, stay healthy, engaged and supported. While this guide was created as an internal document, we wanted to share it with you here. Please feel free to download it. We hope there is something in there that you find helpful for your organisation and your people, and if you’d like to chat through any of the elements within the guide, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Our Guide to Working Remotely – an ever-evolving tool to support our people
Click to visit the Guide to Working Remotely download page.

How our Guide to Working Remotely came to life

There’s that expression you often hear – building the plane while you’re flying it – and it feels like (as organisations) we have all very quickly found ourselves in a situation where we’ve had to do this like never before. We’ve created guiding principles dedicated to our people’s wellbeing and focus on enabling them to be successful and productive. We’ve responded to government advice, interpreting, deciding, communicating and constantly adapting and evolving our playbooks and toolsets as we go.

While as organisations we may have policies and guidelines for almost any situation to support our people and leaders, nothing could quite prepare us for this situation, or for the challenge of getting all our people working remotely within an incredibly short space of time.

And for us, being a cloud technology provider, it wasn’t the technology itself that proved challenging for us in this swift move to working from home (although there were certainly a number of details to be sorted out on the fly and last-minute scrambles to sort – think second monitors, home internet connectivity issues or a myriad of home ‘office’ set-up challenges, to name just a few… I’m sure you will all have similar recollections of this time!).

The real challenge for us was in helping support our people as we adapted to all – nearly 1,000 – of us – working from home, moving quickly from ten offices across Australia, New Zealand and Seattle to nearly 1,000 separate ‘offices’ in the space of – in some cases – just days.

To help us enable our people to feel supported, safe and productive in their home working environments, one of the – ever-evolving – guides we’ve created (on the fly, to use the plane analogy, with the support of very many people within and outside our organisation) over the past couple of months is this Guide to Working Remotely.

For us, the guide is a really useful tool to help us support our people – but it’s also more than that: it’s a memento of the past couple of months, a reminder of what we can achieve together, iteratively, learning and adapting as we go, drawing on our collective strengths and the insights of our people and our partners.

What happens next?

As I mentioned, this is an evolving document, and we’ll continue to evolve this as we evolve.

We don’t have it all figured out and we’re learning – fast – as we go. What’s encouraging, though, is that in the midst of the challenges we all face, in a number of places we’re also seeing the silver lining of opportunities that will – I have no doubt – help shape the way we work differently, together in the future, for good.

Alongside organisations all around the world right now, we’re still responding in near real-time, listening closely and intently to our people and to the outside world – our customers, the market and guidance from the authorities within the various jurisdictions in which we operate.

Already the learnings have been immense – in many things we’ve identified new and better ways of doing things and in other areas we’ve quickly worked out the things we won’t do again! But those are observations for another day – which I will share here in the coming weeks.

We hope you find this guide useful. A huge thank you to our People Experience team, our people, leaders and to our friends at Microsoft who all helped bring this together.


This blog is part of the #ReimagineWork series. For more experts' insights, clients' experiences and to download our datasheets, click the banner.

For more experts' insights, clients' experience and to download our datasheets, click the banner #datareimagine

Posted by: Daniel Kershaw, People Experience Manager | 30 April 2020

Tags: #ReimagineWork, Remote Working

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