Remote work is great because no co-workers or managers are hanging over your shoulder. No one is stealing your lunch from the office fridge. However, working from home has its challenges.
Ask anyone who works from home running their own business or works as a telecommuter, and they’ll tell you it’s cyclical. Many employees are more productive when they work from home, but they are also vulnerable to working longer hours, work-home interference, intense work pace and greater stress.
The covid-19 pandemic has forced many employers to allow their employees to work from home due to the threat of the virus. Whether you are currently working as a remote worker or you’re thinking about working from home, you will be more productive when you have a way of eradicating the challenges of working from home.
Challenges of Remote Working and How to Overcome It
Working Too Much
One of the reasons why employers don’t approve remote work is that they fear employees will not be productive because there is no physical supervision. However, remote workers are more likely to overwork. When your work life and personal life are both under the same roof, it will be difficult to maintain the two at the same time.
How to Avoid Overworking
You may need to trick yourself to set clear terms and take some breaks. Otherwise, you risk burnout. These are some of the things that can help you:
- Set Appointments for Your Daily Activities: You should use the calendar to keep track of your office activities and set a reminder for other essential activities. It could be an appointment to go to the grocery store or gym or a walk around your environment. This will reduce stress and give you the opportunity to think clearly.
- Set Reminders for Breaks: As a member of the WFH cybersecurity team, you can use the clock settings on your personal computer to announce the time. This will remind you to refill your glass of water and stretch your hands and legs.
- Turn off Notifications: You can decide to turn off all notifications on your computer and phone. This will help you to stay away from work for a few hours.
Remote workers need to be self-motivated at time management because there is no one overseeing the working hours. While every remote worker may find it hard to focus on a particular schedule and manage their to-do list, it is challenging for work from home employees who have more flexibility. Managing your personal work may be difficult. Also, there is constant temptation to watch one episode of your favorite movie during your break, take your dog for a walk or tidy up the kitchen when you are postponing a project. All of a sudden, the night is here and you don’t have anything to show for the day.
How to Ensure You Get the Most Essential Task Done
- Reduce The Number Of Things You Plan To Do Every Day: Try as much as possible to avoid unnecessary time-wasting tasks and know the tasks that are important.
- Manage Your Energy: Your energy rises and declines during the day. Therefore, tackle the tasks based on your capacity and how much you will be able to focus at different times of the day.
The good news about working from home is avoiding coronavirus, and you will be able to avoid co-workers dropping by your desk and other office interruptions. However, the bad news is that you will have to deal with other types of distractions. The interruptions may be from noisy neighbors, a UPS delivery person needing your signature or your family coming to your house unannounced. It’s hard if you have kids, who do not know that you are busy with work.
Ways to Tackle Interruptions at Home
- Set up a Signal to Let Others Know You are Busy: Maybe it’s a do not disturb sign on your door or physical expression. This will keep people away from you while working. You may also decide to lock your door.
- Explain the Reason to Avoid Interruptions to Your Family: Let them know that whenever they interrupt your work, it creates confusion and makes your work difficult.
- Keep Regular Work Hours: Don’t just answer calls during work. You can invent meetings for personal works.
Loneliness and Lack of Human Interaction
If you are a remote worker and you don’t have any family members at home, you may have an isolation problem. Even with internet access, cybersecurity tools and VPN, you may still be lonely from being in the same place for a long period. The coronavirus pandemic has also created loneliness for a lot of WFH cybersecurity experts.
How to Avoid Loneliness When Working From Home
- Include Social Breaks in Your Schedule: You can try and work for a few hours and spend some time socializing with people outside your home. You can decide to have lunch with friends before resuming back to work. Grabbing a snack while chatting with the cashier can make your day great.
- Try Co-working Space: This will help you to feel like you are part of society. A co-working space will offer you the settings of your office and you will be able to interact with co-workers.
- Be Intentional About Joining Local Groups: Attend networking conferences, find a Meetup or go to the gym at the recreation center located in your area.
The Difference in Time Zone
This is related to feeling out of the loop due to bad time zones. You may be waking up just when your IT security team is just going to bed. That means you can’t always depend on your WFH cybersecurity team to answer a particular question or provide solutions to urgent matters.
Nothing makes a remote workforce cybersecurity team shake in fear as much as an internet outage, computer breaks or attack from cybercriminals. Many public Wi-Fi hotspots can also be spotty. Even with a decent internet connection, video conference applications are not always dependable. Therefore, virtual meetings can lead to frustration.
For peace of mind and avoiding delays in your work activities, it’s ideal to have a backup plan. A mobile hotspot device that allows tethering can save you when you have an internet outage.
If you need a cybersecurity tool that can make your remote work effective, then choose Vicarius. Vicarius is a vulnerability management software that targets cybersecurity officers as well as IT managers and operators from the U.S. market.