Working remotely is a blessing and more and more companies are allowing their staff to work from anywhere across the globe.
The benefits of this include being location independent and able to relocate to another country, working from home or traveling while doing it.
Remote work also leads to higher productivity, increased job satisfaction, and happier workers.
So, if you’re working for someone else and making them rich, you can as well do it from the comfort of your home or be anywhere else. That kind of freedom can make it all worth it and motivate you to do your best job and excel in your chosen career field.
However, workplace health and safety are still two key areas of your job and you shouldn’t underestimate them. Just because there’s no boss around to remind you of these it doesn’t mean you should neglect them.
Remote workers are more independent but with that comes greater responsibility. However, if you keep in mind the points below and take the necessary steps now, you will be just fine.
Your well-being and safety are closely related to your focus during the day, energy levels, creativity and ability to get more done in less time.
Knowing you can improve all these by following the advice below should be enough to get you started.
How to Stay Safe as a Remote Worker
1. Do your research.
Employees often believe their benefits cover everything necessary and usually aren’t even familiar with them. While that might be okay when you go to an office every day, the case is different when you’re at your own home or on the road.
Information is powerful and you must do an extensive research to understand exactly what your employer covers.
If you travel too often, for example, and to distant areas with a completely different environment, you might not be fully protected in certain cases.
Yes, you’ll never know what can happen. Regardless, you need to prepare and have the knowledge necessary to take care of yourself or look for your rights when the time comes.
Whether it’s a personal injury, a medical treatment that goes wrong, an illness during the holiday season, or having an accident while doing work-related activities, you should make sure you’re covered.
2. Find work-life balance all over again.
Work-life balance is key to having less stress, being healthy and enjoying life.
But once you start working remotely you need to find that balance all over again. For some people, it might be even more challenging.
It’s easy to stay behind your desk simply because you can and end up burning out. An employee satisfaction survey is a great practice, particularly employers who wish to prevent these issues.
It’s also easy to neglect your work if you’re traveling or dealing with personal issues. In this case, getting yourself out of the house and to the office as part of the regular 9 to 5 life makes more sense.
To find work-life balance when working remotely you must be aware of how you’re spending your days and what your priorities are.
Tracking your time is important. Your employer is probably already doing this with an employee performance software, but you can go the extra mile and manage your own time better.
Make sure you’re allocating the right amount of time to the right tasks, instead of just keeping yourself busy or indulging in social media.
Plan your day the night before and follow the list you create to stay on track and get anything done.
Find out the bad habits that make you lazy or distract you and do something about each.
Wake up earlier and have a morning routine for a positive start of the day. This also gives you some extra time that you can use to do things you enjoy and organize the day.
Read also: How 5 Years of Remote Writing Helped Me Stay Sane
3. Keep your data safe.
Keeping your computer secure is key.
Your employer must have provided a policy concerning that which is shared with all remote employees. But there are steps you can take to improve cybersecurity.
Here are some tips:
- Be careful when using public Wi-Fi, a new computer or USB devices. This is especially true when you’re traveling and doing your work from a shared computer or your own device but using the network of an airport or a hotel. If you must use public Wi-Fi, consider also using encryption tools like a Virtual Private Network (VPN). They can secure the traffic you send through public networks, ensuring the information is not stolen. You can learn more from ExpressVPN’s guide on what is a VPN here.
- Never leave your devices unattended.
- Make regular updates.
- Don’t open suspicious emails or click links that don’t have https in the URL.
- Your personal information shouldn’t be shared with a third party unless you trust the company/platform.
- Immediately alert your manager when something is wrong instead of trying to fix it yourself, especially if you aren’t tech-savvy.
These 3 tips should be enough to get you started on your journey to workplace health and safety while working remotely.