We’re taking a look at how to measure productivity when working from home so that you can analyze your workflow and identify how you can boost your productivity.
Working from home is drastically different than being in an office. While it comes with different pros and cons, the main talking point is about productivity. When you’re in an office, you can judge your productivity off the work of your colleagues and how quickly you get a project completed. When you’re working from home, there’s no one else in person who you can use to compare your workflow and productivity to.
While working from home can be a cost-effective alternative to an office setting and more beneficial to your mental health, you want to make sure you’re being as productive at home as you would be in an office. You might even find that you’re more productive when working remotely than in the office.
1. Find a Baseline
You need to find a bench-marker to determine what is and isn’t a productive day. This baseline will look different to everyone. If you’re a writer, it might be a certain word count. If you’re a consultant, it might be speaking to a certain number of clients. Depending on your job, it might be hitting an online sales goal or answering a ballpark number of emails.
It’s also helpful to have an idea of how long you typically spend on certain tasks. Does it usually take an hour to write a proposal? Can you get through your overnight emails during your morning coffee?
There are apps for everything – including tracking how you work. Timely gathers data as you work, giving you a dashboard of timelines for how long you spend working in certain applications. This app will give you a visual of your productivity and how long you’ve spent working on certain products.
2. Identify How “Deeply” You Work
There are always times of the day that we work best. You might be more productive in the morning or a night owl who gets through everything in the final hours of the day. It’s a good idea to identify when you work most deeply. This time is when you’re most productive and focused solely on smashing your to-do list.
You can figure out when you’re most productive by taking a look at your ‘sent’ box on your emails to see when you tend to reply most to messages. You’ll often know instinctively whether you work more deeply at 9 am or 3 pm. You want to focus on how much work you get done to judge your productivity for the day.
Once you know when your best time is for working, that’s when you want to try and block out as much time as possible for working.
3. Write a Detailed To-Do List
One of the easiest ways to judge your productivity is to write a to-do list that is detailed and achievable while still having a bit of ambition to it. While you usually have a daily to-do list, it’s good to have an overall to-do list of what you want to achieve for the week. Identify the things that you have to get done to meet your deadlines and what you want to do if you find extra time in your day.
Anything that isn’t done on your daily to-do list can be rolled over onto the next day. Your goal should be to get everything on your weekly to-do list done by the time you clock off for the weekend.
If you notice that you’re not getting through your to-do list, it’s a sign that you need to find ways to boost your productivity.
4. Check-In With Your Team
When you’re thinking of how to measure productivity when working from home, you want to judge how you’re working compared to your colleagues. Most companies and organizations will host team calls at least once a week. It’s an ideal opportunity to see what everyone else in your team is doing.
You can use these meetings to see if people are meeting their weekly goals or if they are falling behind on their work. If you find that you’re consistently out-performing them, it’s a good indication of your higher productivity.
Speaking to your team means that you can make sure you’re on track with your goals. It’s a way of making sure you’re meeting (and exceeding!) the expectations of your managers and company leadership. Let them know where you are on deadlines – including if you need extra support – before offering to add anything else to your to-do list.
It’s worth arranging for a one-on-one meeting with your manager to touch base and see what feedback they can offer you. You might think you’re being the most productive person on your team, but your manager will be able to offer you another point of view.
5. Identify Potential Results
Most companies operate with a results-oriented culture and it’s how the typical employer will judge your productivity levels. Everyone has a set of results they’re expected to deliver to the company – whether it’s increased sales, client retention, or new sponsorships. You should always be aiming to at least maintain – if not exceed – the results you have previously achieved in your position.
You’ll usually receive a list of aims and objectives for every financial quarter or year from your company. You can measure your productivity against your progress towards these results. When it comes to getting a promotion or a pay rise, this is the information that your performance will be judged by.
You can incorporate these goals into your weekly and long-term planning so that you can keep on track.
Measuring Productivity When Work From Home
A study conducted by Valoir suggests that the average productivity loss of remote working is 1%. Another study determined that remote working teams perform 13 to 35% more productively. This data means that most people are performing just as productively (if not more so!) at home than in the office.
If you want to make the switch to remote working, you want to understand how to measure productivity when working from home.