Transitioning Your Nonprofit Team to Remote Work

Nonprofit Resources has been operating remotely for 28 years and has continued to demonstrate how attainable this model is for any nonprofit association. Low overhead, adaptability, and a positive environmental impact are just a few benefits of operating remotely.

With the COVID-19 national emergency, many organizations are struggling to transition to virtual offices. While NPR is managed 100% remote with employees in South Dakota, Arizona, California, and Oregon, a full transition to remote offices permanently isn’t always the best fit for every organization.

Each company is unique, and it’s important to pick and choose the elements that work best together with your company culture to create a model that your company thrives on. We’ve laid out some key items to take into account when transitioning to a remote work model.

Policies

Prior to making the transition to remote offices, the expectations you have for your team should be outlined in your handbook and policies.

  • Do you have set “office” hours, or do your employees curate their own schedules?
    • One of the most popular reasons employees favor the remote workstyle is the flexibility it gives them in their day-to-day lives, especially those with children. Allowing your employees to set their own schedule is a huge perk and could attract more applicants for open positions.
  • How will your team communicate effectively?
    • Consider what other technology and tools your organization can utilize outside of email to stay connected.
  • How will you know if the work is being done?
    • Establish how your team will track productivity and progress on projects. Will you use time tracking or base efficiency on the number of tasks being completed?

Communication

While working remotely it can be difficult for your team to feel connected. E-mail will likely be your main source of interaction, but there are more tools to consider using internally.

Slack, Microsoft Teams, and GoToMeeting are popular online gadgets that you can effortlessly integrate into your company’s repertoire. Instant messaging, group collaboration, and face-to-face meetings can make the transition to home offices easier for your employees. While the flexibility of remote work is a key benefit, some employees may find the solitude sobering. Staying connected with their professional peers throughout the workday helps to maintain the social aspect of office culture.

Productivity

Going remote can introduce a new set of challenges in the association when it comes to productivity. It’s necessary to establish how work, projects, and time will be tracked and managed. Many remote organizations assess productivity based on the number of tasks completed or if goals are being met. Asana is a product that can make this easier for your team. If you do choose to keep track of hours clocked in each day, you could consider QuickBooks Time Tracking. Employees can keep track of hours spent on projects and you can run your payroll directly through their system. 

Like any model, there are pros and cons to remote work. While we firmly stand by our decision to operate 100% remotely, of course, there are those who prefer the standard office model. Take time to research if a permanent change would be beneficial to your company and read more about what you should consider at https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/329560.

If your organization is looking for partial or full management services with a remote work team, contact us for a free proposal.

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