Your team are working from home. Do you know what they’re really up to?

How an effective process gives you a clear picture of what your staff are doing without micro-managing.

One of the biggest barriers to home-working is worrying your team won’t use their time efficiently. Though you hope you’ve hired people you can rely on to perform and meet deadlines, there’s always the uncertainty that you may be paying their wage while they’re distracted from their desk.

Yet trying to keep an eye on what your team are up to while trusting them to work independently is a difficult balance to strike. And, like many business owners and managers, you don’t want to make your team feel unhappy or use up your own time monitoring their work. So how do you make sure you know what your team are doing from home in the new hybrid working world?

Keep staff motivated

One of the biggest challenges when you’re trying to find out what your team are doing at home is the feeling that you’re constantly interfering. Asking your staff to provide reports on their working day or clock their time can be counterproductive, especially if it’s not a process they’re used to following in the office environment. But getting heavily and regularly involved wastes your time and resources, taking you away from winning new business and managing clients.

Making sure your employees are engaged is one of the ways Propolis keeps teams motivated and helps staff feel valued. We know teams who feel happy at work are more likely to be productive. So we spend time with them, whether in person or on Zoom, to make sure they understand what the company is doing and what new processes are in place to support them.

Instead of leaving your staff feeling like there’s a never-ending cycle of home-based working, we’ll make sure they know what they can do to work collaboratively. Once they understand the importance of their tasks and processes, and where they add value, they’re more likely to carry them out efficiently, which has a positive effect on your profits.

Uncover everyday processes

Often, it’s not intentional poor time management that’s causing an issue. Ineffective use of resources adds unnecessary hours to your day and increases your costs. But how do you identify where that’s happening?

Recently, we worked with a client who wanted to understand how their staff were using their time at home to make sure they were working as efficiently as possible. The team were showing a real enthusiasm for their work, but tasks seemed to be taking a little longer than necessary to complete and expense claims were rising.

We engaged with team members remotely on Zoom, asking them what their work involved. One lady told us every time she received a document she printed it, scanned it, and then placed it in a plastic wallet. Carried out multiple times daily, this was costing the client money and time, as well as increasing the amount of waste and off-setting their pledge to improve their carbon footprint. Yet by working with the team objectively and openly, we identified the issue and could show the staff member how and why the process was unnecessary. Then, she could reduce actions and environmental impact, making sure her time was spent more profitably.

Learn from successes

Finding out what your team are really doing from home isn’t all about pinpointing problems. It’s just as much about uncovering ways of working well that can form part of the processes that improve your cashflow.

Your team members may well have discovered a new way of carrying out a task from their desk at home that makes their working day that little bit smoother. But if they’ve kept that to themselves, you’re missing out on the opportunity to share efficient ways of working throughout your team that can be implemented by everyone to save time and money. At Propolis, we identify these successes by spending time with your team. Then, we uncover what can become collaborative processes to gain information, share knowledge and improve procedures company-wide.

A third-party chat with Propolis always helps teams to open up honestly without judgement or fear, revealing what they’re really doing working from home. We then use these finding to drive the process changes that’ll increase efficiency and profitability across your organisation, giving you peace of mind that you know what’s going on – and that its working well for your business’ bottom line.


For a transparent, cost-saving and approachable way to uncover what your team are up to at home to help increase your profits, contact Sarah: