The FNF team knows these last two weeks have been an adjustment period for everyone in the title industry. We commend our network of agents for staying strong and continuing to fulfill customer needs in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic while caring for their teams and their families.
During this time, title companies have been deemed an “essential service,” by government officials, a designation supported by the Department of Homeland Security and the Treasury Department. This distinction means your offices have remained operational, even in places where travel and business have been restricted. Of course, you’ve also taken plenty of health and safety measures to protect customers and employees. For many of you allowing parts of your team to work remotely (from home) has been one of those steps.
For those who have never worked from home for a prolonged period of time, there is a learning curve to getting it right. Given current events, we’re sure there has been little time to do said adjusting, so we wanted to provide some information on how to most effectively work from home.
When working from home – or anywhere outside the office – cybersecurity becomes doubly important. Hopefully, you already took steps to make sure employees had anti-virus programs and other security software installed on their laptops, two-factor authentication on their accounts and a secured internet connection at home before you allowed them to work remotely.
Companies should also make sure that their IT support people can still be of assistance in a remote set-up. Think about how much you rely on them during a regular workday; you’re likely going to need them during this remote work period too. Lastly, make sure your team is backing up their work somewhere other than their primary computer and that your company has a well-known procedure in place in case of a cybersecurity incident.
This may be an area you and your team are still working on, which is understandable. But good communication will be key to the success of your remote-for-now workforce. Maybe, you’re one of the many outfits that have checked out Slack or Microsoft Teams. If not, one of these programs may be a good solution for you to streamline communication. Regular video calls, possibly using Zoom or something like it, can be good for team morale and socialization too, just don’t overdo it.
After all, trust in your employees is a good communication practice too. If you’re the company leader, make sure your team knows that you’re available to support them anytime, but don’t feel the need to schedule an abundance of check-in meetings either. If your office thrives on autonomy and trust when everyone is physically together, there’s no reason not to have that same level of confidence in your people now. Having someone notify you every time they complete a task that normally doesn’t need your approval won’t benefit anyone.
Here is the section for those of you actually working from home. Hopefully, you have all the tools you need from the office to thrive, but here are a few things to remember as you embark on this journey.
- If you have a designated home work area – use it. If not, try to find some space. One of the most common complaints from people making this change is that they have a hard time separating work from the rest of their lives. Speaking of boundaries, set work-hour limits like you would have in the office.
- Along those same lines, try to keep your morning routine as much as possible. We know this pandemic may have brought you a slew of new personal tasks to take care of, but if you still practice your before-work ritual (minus the commute), do it. That will help get your brain in work mode. Plus, you stay on top of your hygiene, no matter how long this lasts.
- Don’t feel guilty about taking a break. Move around a bit, take care of an errand or just give your mind a chance to re-charge. Be honest, you’re not engaged in “work stuff” for eight straight hours in the office every day. You don’t have to do that at home either.
- Remember, your colleagues and family members are adjusting to a new normal too.
The entire FNF team thanks our agents for all their hard work during this ever-changing situation. Protecting your health, your customers and your business is paramount during times like these, and the FNF Family of Companies are here for you to lean on for the support you need.