Each morning promptly at 8:30 a.m., we get to see our colleagues’ smiling faces. There’s the usual daily greetings, coffee talk and laughs, except unlike a normal work day, our team is meeting virtually.
With COVID-19 (the coronavirus) sweeping the globe, Rivers Agency has taken the unprecedented step of having all of our employees work from home. While doing our part to stop the spread of the disease, the team is finding new ways to stay connected and provide seamless service for our clients.
For our team to be able to telecommute effectively, preparations were made weeks prior in case working remotely became a necessity. The IT team ensured every staff member had remote access to the server as well as the proper equipment to perform their job functions from the safety of their own home.
Video conferencing software has allowed our teams to huddle every morning and keep projects moving. Using Zoom, client meetings are carrying on as scheduled, with many of our clients working from home as well. Despite not being in the same office on Tuesday, March 17th, our team still managed to pull off a major site deployment for MCNC that was not only on schedule, but the client described it as “the smoothest launch I’ve ever experienced.”
Perhaps the most unexpected aspect of working from home has been getting a glimpse into our colleagues’ lives.
Mary has an eye for interior design, and her son inherited her creativity and channels it into superhero costume design. Paul used to be a DJ and his office is stacked with an enviable collection of vinyl records. Claire’s porch is filled with the beautiful sounds of birds celebrating the arrival of spring. Even our pets are making cameos in our morning video sessions—from curious cats to cuddly lap dogs.
For those of you who are also trying to work from home and still stay connected, we recommend keeping a schedule, designating a room with a door to work from, taking a few breaks throughout the day like you would in the office and doing more video conference calls.
Many of our colleagues are also juggling work and their children who are out of school through the end of the month. We’re finding that creating schedules for them with time carved out for both schoolwork and play is helpful, splitting childcare duties with one’s partner, and taking advantage of online resources—like arts and crafts tutorials, free virtual museum tours and educational video content.
While we all miss each other and being in the office, we’re pulling together in the interest of public health. There is a light at the end of the tunnel—we can’t wait to see you there!
Do your part to #FlattentheCurve #WorkFromHome and keep the economy moving.