Like many organizations around the world responding to the coronavirus pandemic, we've recently made the transition to company-wide remote work.
We've been advocates and practitioners of remote work forquiteawhilenow, but I must admit that we've run into a few incidents which you may have also experienced…
I'm talking of course about cats jumping onto keyboards, kids photo-bombing their parent's video calls, partners hurriedly moving out of frame on their way to the kitchen (or bathroom). Working from home these past three weeks has certainly been a little weird.
Thankfully, though, our intranet platform has made the transition to remote work relatively painless. If you're new to the Jostle blog or otherwise unfamiliar with what we do here (besides write articles for you every week), I should probably explain. We built a new kind of employee intranet designed specifically to make work life less overwhelming. And yes, that also includes remote work life.
We absolutely rely on Jostle, now more than ever. And we're not alone. We've already noticed that our customers are using our platform a whole lot more than usual, too. So for today's article I thought it'd be worth sharing how our customers are using Jostle to adapt to a fully remote working world.
You can now use Jostle for free
Before I get started, I want to acknowledge how hard it can be to transition to company-wide remote work, especially if it's completely new to your organization or if you don't have any remote work software.
To help support organizations as they make this important transition, we're offering a remote work package for free for 60 days for new customers. It's a trimmed down version of Jostle which includes everything you'd need to work remotely:
People: A visual employee directory
News: The go-to place for important updates
Discussions: Instant messaging so you can connect quickly
Tasks: Assign and manage tasks
Mobile: Full access to our mobile app
If you're looking for software to help make remote work possible, I couldn't recommend it enough. We use our own platform every day for pretty much everything: from org-wide announcements, video calls, private messaging to centralizing files, keeping track of projects, and much, much more. You get the idea.
How Jostle is helping remote workers
Shout Digital, a digital marketing agency, is using Jostle as a central hub increasing engagement and informing their people.
While some customers are new to remote work (and Jostle), others are seasoned veterans. They've used their intranet—for years in some cases—to stay connected when they're out in the field or to make flexible working hours possible. Now, they're using their intranets to maintain day-to-day operations as the world transitions to remote work amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
"Throughout this crisis Jostle has been our main point of contact," said Kori Glover, Learning and Development Manager at First Communities Management.
Many of our core features are in fact designed to help remote workers stay informed, connected, engaged, and productive.
Staying informed with Jostle
Staying informed about company policies and developments is essential for every employee, but it's especially important in times of uncertainty. Effective internal communications in a crisis has the potential to protect the safety of your people.
On top of that, the urgency with which remote workers might need to access information means they can’t always wait for someone to respond to a question over email.
Our platform makes internal comms easy with the News view. This is where people can create or share an existing article with their whole organization. We've used ours to share news about the spread of COVID-19 and also communicate our new remote work policy to all the Jostlers.
Our Jostle News view from mid March, showing News Articles about COVID-19.
Over the past few weeks we've noticed a sharp increase in new featured posts from our customers as well. In fact, the number of featured News posts has doubled.
This increase suggests our customers are also utilizing Jostle's News view to publish important company announcements to protect the safety of their employees and help make the transition to remote work as seamless as possible.
Featured News Article usage from November 1st, 2019 - March 25th, 2020
Staying connected with Jostle
Jon Evans of TechCrunch writes that “if [your people] are remote, you need decisive confidence, clear direction, iterative targets, independent responsibilities, asynchronous communications, and cheerful chatter.”
In other words, your remote workers are relying on you (and the technology that connects you to them) to clearly convey information and offer a sense of connection, of belonging.
In practice that means scheduling regular video 1:1s, being available and responsive on chat, and taking advantage of internal communications tools, too. Remote workers rely on unimpeded information, especially now.
Jostle makes this pretty straightforward with our Discussions and Calls features. Discussions is Jostle's chat feature. You can communicate privately, chat together in a group, or quickly find a relevant project Discussion, which we've been doing a lot these days.
And so have our customers. The number of Discussion comments has skyrocketed in recent days as our customers transitioned to remote work.
Discussions posts have more than doubled over the past couple of weeks.
Much like Discussions, Calls is a great way to communicate 1:1 for those crucial face-to-face interactions that we've gone without for almost three weeks now. At Jostle we use Calls for the exact same purpose. We try to make an effort to connect multiple times a day, whether it's for a meeting or just to unwind together over coffee and casual conversation.
Not surprisingly, our customers are using Calls more than ever before.
Video Calls have skyrocketed on Jostle in recent weeks as customers adjust to working from home.
Creating opportunities for regular face-to-face contact is such an effective way to demonstrate to your people that connection matters to your organization.Plus, keeping people involved creates a more engaged, closer-knit company culture.
To be honest, it's a weird time for all of us. We miss congregating in the lunchroom and mid-afternoon coffee runs. We miss chatting with our colleagues and friends. But the fact that remote work is possible for us, and not for others, is a privilege we're extremely grateful for. We're lucky that we're able to connect with each other over technology and proud to share that with our customers.
Looking for software that makes remote work possible?