Reopenings begin with masks, conference rooms have gone Zoom, and businesses face a load of new questions — but for many, the future comes down to one: “How am I going to survive?” We all know that virtual does not replace face-to-face and many small businesses have been hurt. But how can we help these businesses transitioning to virtual?
A recent poll found that 62 percent of employed Americans worked from home during the coronavirus crisis. As the poll noted, the pandemic may not be an issue forever, but remote work will be.
Security One of the most important things businesses going virtual need to consider is their security measures. With so many people working from home, hackers have more of a chance to gain access to sensitive company information.
Taxes Taxes pose a special challenge in a seismic shift to work from home. Employees must coordinate with their employers for reimbursement and we must be careful that sales tax is being charged properly. On the 2020 returns there should be a drop in business mileage, as well as travel costs and meals.
Dedicated Work Space Another solid piece of advice: your bedroom should never be used as an office, select another small area of the home. Also, more workers are reporting that their employer is offering flextime or remote work options. This may mean that you no longer have a choice and must rely on paperless, virtual processes such as electronic signatures and delivery.
Hiring Another challenge employers may be facing is hiring new employees remotely. Some good questions for hiring candidates for remote companies include:
- What is your history of working remotely?
- How do you stay engaged and motivated over long periods without in-person interaction with co-workers?
- What do you do to minimize miscommunication in emails and instant messages?
- What is your approach to work-life balance when your job is remote?
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