The virtual workplace offers many advantages, but it often lacks the resources available in a physical office. While an in-person setting features all of the tech available on the web, a web-based setting doesn’t have the equipment and supplies of an in-person setting. This shortcoming can put virtual workers at a disadvantage, but luckily, there are plenty of innovative tech resources that an online team can use. As is the case with physical resources, though, virtual resources are often limited. How can a team manager allocate them effectively to support each team member’s workload? You may be able to install Zoom office backgrounds for the whole team, but you’ll need a strategy for managing other essential online resources.
Get To Know Your Team
The most essential component of resource allocation — digital or physical — is getting to know your team members. Each employee represents a unique skill set, different interests, and individual strengths. In order to use your company’s tools effectively, you need to understand each person you’re working with, and to do this, you need to ask the right questions. This is where engagement activities and team-building come in. Your team meetings offer a valuable opportunity to learn more about your staff, so it’s essential to reach out, make connections, and ask questions about your employees.
To make these meetings successful, you should establish an environment that’s warm and welcoming. This might seem hard to do on a video call, but you can leverage tools like backgrounds for Google Meet to create the appearance of an office — or some approximation of a workplace. If you’d rather use the opportunity to get creative, you can use another image entirely. What matters most, though, is how you interact with your staff in these meetings. You should always greet participants with a hello and a smile before diving into the agenda.
Take Time To Plan
When you’re allocating digital resources, you need to plan in advance and ensure that you have sufficient coverage for your entire team. If your team only has access to two Adobe Creative Cloud licenses, for example, you should assess whether the required workload can be completed by only two employees. To calculate this, seek feedback from the team members responsible for graphic design. If they indicate that your resources aren’t enough, it may be time to revisit your budget or request additional resources from the higher-ups.
Planning should also consist of delegating tasks carefully. Matching employees to resources is a delicate balance, and in order to do it effectively, you need to clearly outline how each staff member will use the resource they are allotted. The only thing worse than ineffective resource use by leadership is ineffective resource use by staff. You can avoid both of these outcomes by communicating regularly and investing in a custom Zoom background to make your meetings more exciting. Use meeting time to brief team members on the appropriate use of resources. Make sure that you allow time for questions and feedback, too.