How to Manage Roofing Contractors Remotely:4 Tips for Business Owners
June 5, 2020
The COVID-19 situation has forced many roofing contractors to work remotely. While it is true that most of the work of roofing contractors involves working in the field on customer’s homes, the office is still the central hub for tools, work information, and coordination. Unfortunately, with the novel coronavirus crisis ongoing, roofing contractors are not able to access the resources of the office. Assuming new clients are found, it is even more challenging to perform roofing work, especially with social distancing measures in place.
So how can modern roofing contractors adapt to remote work and thrive in this changing business environment? Fortunately, new technological innovations can alleviate the challenges of remote management. With just a few clicks on a computer or taps on a smartphone, business owners and managers can manage employee matters, track employee hours, and collaborate with team members no matter where they are in real-time.
However, remote management is not without its own issues. If the business is new to remote work and strained by the COVID-19 situation, it can be overwhelming not just for managers but for employees as well. So to help your business thrive in this crisis, here are some tips to make your remote management effective.
- Use a single communication platform and stick with it.
The first challenge that you need to address is handling communication between you and your employees working at home or in the field. Without a well-defined system to communicate with your employees, issues can spring up in relaying crucial project information causing misunderstanding and delayed projects. So before you run into these issues, you should first determine the best communication method for your team fortunately, there are several management and communication platforms available to suit your needs. Whichever platform you choose, ensure that every employee is using the same software. Depending on your needs, you may choose an instant messaging platform like Slack for quick contact or a video conferencing application like Zoom or Skype for meetings and brainstorming sessions. Ensure that all of your employees have downloaded the required applications and feel comfortable using them.
- Organize schedules and tasks.
Another important aspect of remote work that you need to address is organizing schedules. Get all your team members on the same page as they work remotely. Be prepared to address arising issues with speed and confidence. To streamline your task management process, you need to have project management software that you can use to delegate tasks, follow up on in-progress tasks, and set deadlines. When choosing project management software, choose one that allows you to organize tasks by type and urgency, add a detailed description of tasks, and set a schedule to prevent delays. Using specific platforms to handle deadline management of legal forms and contracts like preliminary notices and lien waivers is also important in protecting all parties while maintaining efficiency at work.
- Maintain daily communication with employees.
Another critical consideration is how frequently you communicate with your team. Depending on your management style and the needs of your company, you may approach this differently. Ideally, you want to have daily conversations with your employees working remotely. These daily check-ins and catch-up meetings will let you know what every member of your team is working on and how much progress they have made. This you create an accurate timeline of your roofing projects as your team members work.
- Listen more. Talk less.
The COVID-19 situation is emotionally taxing to people. Working in the middle of the crisis is doubly stressful and exhausting, not to mention a potential slowdown in business. Some businesses face temporary shutdowns. There will surely be fears and doubts among your employees and it is your job to address them in an understanding way. For this reason, it is important that you talk less and listen more to your employees. Inquire about how they feel about their work. Let them talk about the difficulties they encounter with remote work and address them to the best of your ability. Ask questions and let them do the talking. Anticipate the questions that they may ask you and answer them satisfactorily.
Managing your roofing business employees as they work remotely is challenging. Take advantage of remote management tools to improve communication and delegate tasks efficiently. Communicate with your employees as often as possible and listen to their concerns. With effective communication, your employees and your business can stay resilient as the crisis continues.
About the Author:
Kevin Rabida is a content marketing specialist writing in-depth articles and guides about new technology, small business challenges, and blue-collar industry issues and has been featured in several US, UK, and Australian trade publications. He’s worked with companies like UPrinting, PrintPlace, and Handle.com.