Seven months ago, the world was forced to shift to accommodate remote work for the health and safety of their employees & customers. The Covid19 pandemic ushered in a new wave of remote workers that saw companies across the globe scrambling to make the switch easy & sustainable without compromising on mental health & productivity.
Brucira switched to remote work mid-March to ensure that our team members & their loved ones did not contract the virus through public transport. Since then, we’ve leveraged communication tools and innovated to increase productivity and collaboration. Here are some of the ways we’ve sustained remote work at Brucira:
In a bid to reintroduce the easy communication we had in the office, our entire team began to use Slack for more than just keeping track of client needs & other tasks. We created multiple channels to streamline different client and inter-departmental projects. Slack’s ability to integrate third-party apps such as Google Drive, Trello, and Dropbox allowed us to share designs easily.
In other to keep things fun, we also made sure to use the #random channel to share interesting things we came across while working. The #general channel has become home to screenshots taken during calls, festival celebrations, and more.
To facilitate autonomy and reduce the need for multiple follow-ups, Brucira created ‘BRUTASK’, an innovative new tool that works as a company-wide internal to-do list for each team member. Every morning, we all update our Brutasks to reflect what we’ll be working on for the day and ensure we tick off everything that’s completed by the end of the day. Since this is view-able by anyone within Brucira, managers can simply check in on their team’s progress without constant follow up. We’ve found this to be more effective as it lets the team members work on their tasks without worrying about someone constantly looking over their shoulder.
Brucira is made up of several designers, developers, illustrators, and content creators — this means that everyone uses different software to create their product. To ensure that everyone can access the necessary designs or wireframes or copy, we use Notion to categorize links to Google Drive, Dropbox, our internal Trello master board and more.
This means that links can simply be updated on Notion and people notified of the same on Slack — no need to search through the entire Slack channel history or rifle through lengthy old email threads to find the design you need for a client project.
A few months into working remotely, Brucira held a small internal competition to motivate everyone to create dedicated workspaces however they could manage. Everyone at Brucira took this challenge and came up with their versions of a workspace they loved working from:
This turned out to be an extremely beneficial move as the pandemic has shown no signs of slowing down; some countries have reinstated lockdown restrictions in a bid to stop the spread of the virus.
Work together, play together
Birthdays & other celebrations used to be a great source of joy when we all worked together in the same office. We didn’t want to let those traditions go, so we began celebrating lockdown birthdays via video calls after work.
To test our design skills, we play Pictionary (or an online version of the same) during these celebrations — it can get really competitive & fun!
We also asked the team if there’s anything else they’d like to do during work that will help them be more productive, relaxed, and happy and they came up with Formal Thursdays! For the last couple of months, we’ve been taking the opportunity to dress up in our fine threads (which haven’t gotten much traction due to the pandemic) and it’s been great to improve the overall mood of the team!
We know first-hand how consuming work can be. While we do our best to ensure a good work-life balance for everyone at Brucira, sometimes they may not get time to work on learning new skills or studying new design techniques.
This is why we came up with Skillful Saturdays! On alternate Saturdays, we all take the day to work on something we want to — purely for fun & learning! Whether it’s animation or intricate typography, there have been some amazing results.
Remote work can be tricky to manage, especially if you expect everyone to just work as they did in the office. Making accommodations for different needs — whether it’s a parent who works full-time or a student who’s working part-time for you, it’s important to be receptive to them to ensure maximum productivity without compromising on happiness.
Find out more about what we do at brucira.com & reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to bring any ideas you may have to life!
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