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Emergency management: The strategy behind working remotely

A time of crisis requires you to take action that benefits the people working with you as well as your business.

In just a few days we went from being a company that is considering the day where we could wide-scale working from home to having every employee working remotely successfully. 

As everyone knows, every part of CodeTactic is handled locally but we have worked remotely with clients around the world, this means we have taken up several techniques and practices to ensure this method of work with our customers.  But we have never tested these procedures as a long term strategy with our own team.  

At CodeTactic, we are a team of professionals that values the time we get to spend together working on projects. We all take part in most of the projects,  getting ideas and actually working together. This idea of “home-office” was only a way to provide our team a chance to spend a few days at home working if needed – up until this crisis started of course.

“We understood the risks and what we needed to provide for our team to be safe, which is why everyone is working from the safety of their own homes. There is no sense in risking our health when we can work properly and keep our deadlines in time by working remotely.” 

 

– CEO Lyle Patel.

 

Our government hasn’t dictated social distancing as order just yet (Vancouver, BC- Headquarters), but they did have several recommendations and most importantly, reasons as to why we should all stay at home and be safe during this time in order to prevent this virus from spreading further. This was what made us take the decision to become a full-remote company within a few days. 

We will go through our decisions during this time and what strategy we implemented in order to successfully have our team safe at home while continuing with the work we had scheduled as well as new projects coming our way. 

 

From Office to Home

Transitions are never easy, especially when you are in charge of helping +10 people from each of our locations (Vancouver – Seattle – Los Angeles – Lima) to go from working their regular schedule on an office to a full-remote system in a few days. 

We designated a Support Team,  the managers of each of our locations formed a team that was in charge of guaranteeing a comfortable and easy transition for every CodeTactic Team member.  Managers had the necessary tools and guidelines in order to allow the team to concentrate entirely on their jobs – developing top software solutions, apps, websites and more.

They took the time to create a transition strategy as well as details on how we were going to proceed during this time (until today, we are not certain how long we will be working remotely due to the crisis)

Not only did the managers take care of guiding the whole process, how we are going to handle working remotely and how we approach work and projects, but also providing every piece of equipment needed to provide the best and most functional environment at their homes. They are in charge of making sure that every CodeTactic member has full-time support to take any challenge that might come our way while working remotely and get an immediate solution.

Communication & organization within the team are key 

Now that your team is working from home, there has to be a communication strategy in place as well. Having a project management platform for your team to continue with their projects and clients, while also organizing meetings with the rest of the team is going to help everyone to continue the good work. 

There are a few details that your strategy must-have for the “work from home” plan to work properly. 

  • Conference and video calls are important to discuss upcoming events, projects, and timelines. We at CodeTactic often use Google Meet as a tool for our conference calls with the team. 
  • Calendar and deadlines must be properly registered to have every member of your team organized time-wise. Between our project management platform, My CodeTactic and our Google Calendar we keep our day organized and our clients informed on every project.
  • Emails to let everyone on the team know the current situation and what has been discussed and decided during the conference calls and meetings.
  • Information and guidelines of how we are going to proceed as CodeTactic during this time, how we will handle new projects and clients, etc. 
  • Constant updates from CEO and Senior Executives of the developments regarding the company, the effects and what the future might bring for us.

It is important to keep your team always informed of what is going on with the company as well as with the clients. Transparency will help your team feel safe as it minimizes the uncertainty of these difficult times and lowers the stress we are all currently feeling. This way your team can continue to focus on the job in hand while knowing the situation is under control and that they are safe. 

Equipment and tools  

If your team will work from home, they will need to have all the tools and technology in order to do so – computers and smartphones are just the beginning. 

We at CodeTactic, we established that we needed to take everything we might need. Making a clear list of all the equipment your team will need is the start:

  • Computers
  • Laptops
  • Tablets 
  • Company Phones 
  • Additional monitors 
  • Routers 
  • Testing devices
  • And any additionals requested

Anything that we weren’t able to take home, was scheduled to be delivered. 

Project and clients management 

As we have worked remotely with several international clients, we already know and understand the methodology and processes in order to continue to deliver within the timeline provided.  We adopted these now that we are working from home and we keep our clients informed every step of the way during their projects.

But, How did we do that?

  • Using a project management system – My CodeTactic is the project management platform that we developed and use to communicate constantly with our clients, upload and share files, share previews, comments, leave notes and tasks, and much more.
  • Daily organization – The team has to be able to organize their time and productivity during the day in order to continue the pace of work.
  • Deadlines – maintaining the order for every task is key if you want to maintain deadlines with clients. 
  • Honesty and clarity – Keep your clients informed of the steps you are taking during the project.

Financial plans and strategies for your business

Making sure your company continues to get clients and cash flow is important at the moment. During this crisis, every business industry will get financially hit. The important thing to understand is how hard your company will be hit by this crisis. 

There is, of course, going to be a negative effect for your company, which is inevitable considering the changes in the market and the economy worldwide. But how bad could it be? And how prepared is your business to take action? These are the questions you must have answered for every possible scenario ahead of time to be ready and ensure your team and business.

At CodeTactic, between our CEO Lyle Patel and Executives, an exhaustive evaluation of the possible scenarios from the very best to the worst possible loss has been done. This helps us take action accordingly on every case and be able to maintain the solid team that we currently have. Being ready for any event or change is key to manage the situation properly.

Our main priority is to secure our current team. We have to be able to provide them the certainty they need as well for them to focus on their job, which is why CodeTactic is ready to undertake any possible scenario coming our way during this worldwide pandemic and maintain our team together.

Keep your team motivated

It is important to maintain a strong and integrated work environment although we are physically apart. CodeTactic has a strong relationship among the team and company culture, it’s important to maintain the closeness between the group and continue with activities that usually took place before, team activities like taking some time together, chat, hang out after work, the only difference being that, as of right now, this needs to be done digitally for safety reasons. 

It is definitely a stressful time for everyone but we need to continue with our routine as best as we can. Keep in mind that maintaining the spirits up for everyone will help us all go through this difficult time together.

 

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Written by Marcela Odez

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