At Ronin, our number one priority is the health and safety of our amazing team and wonderful clients. This has meant that, given the current health crisis, we’ve started working remotely from home rather than in the office (most of the team are already suffering from withdrawals from our famous morning teas). While these times are totally unprecedented, we’re proud to say that we’re adapting to our new work set up extremely well.
At Ronin, we are lucky enough to be a completely cloud-based company that works internationally through technology every day. Given that we work in the digital world, you’d expect nothing less. However, what happens when we can no longer share our office workspace? Read on to find out how the Ronin team is smashing remote working and maintaining our sanity whilst self-isolating to help keep each other safe.
A cloud-based working environment
In 2020, long gone are the days of physical filing systems, handwritten address books and calendars. Going one step further, using cloud systems for your business makes everything easier. From storing files to finding that document you know you were just looking at, going cloud-based takes any office to a whole new level of organised.
At Ronin, we love technology and working digitally (obviously). Our entire company is cloud-based, meaning that if needed, we can technically work from anywhere in the world. While our headquarters are in Brisbane, Australia, part of our team works out of Paris, France. Our team shares work through Google Drive and you can find us video chatting each other on a daily basis, discussing projects and tasks (as well as the latest Netflix shows that we’re hooked on). This allows us to keep communication open and, as we strongly believe teamwork makes the dream work, allows all of our team members to access documents and files quickly and easily.
Tools such as Google Drive also allow for re-time collaboration on documents, we can be working together on the same document and see exactly who has added what. Collaboration has never been so easy! This is especially vital now that we are all working remotely.
A system of systems
Working remotely doesn’t actually change how Ronin works, thanks to the systems we have in place. However, this might not be the case for a lot of businesses across many industries. Migrating from handwritten to-do lists to online project management software will help any company not only gain a better grasp of what is actually being done but also reduce stress when, all of a sudden, everyone needs to work from home.
We love systems and structure at Ronin. Because we manage an ever-evolving workflow between the whole team, we need systems in place to ensure things stay on track whether we’re in the office or working from home. We manage our workflow using Asana, an online project management software that allows us to easily manage tasks between team members. When combined with Everhour, Asana also allows us to track the time spent on tasks, so everyone is in the picture all the time. Both in the office and at home, we clock in and out using Calamari, which is even more important now so that the bosses know we are actually working from home and not catching up on sleep or binging on the latest Netflix release!
Communication is a wonderful thing
We can’t stress how important communication is within every aspect of life – let alone your workplace. Now, perhaps more than ever, it is important for us all to keep the communication going between colleagues, our bosses, friends and family. As more and more of us become physically isolated to help flatten the curve of COVID-19, we need to increase the amount of virtual communication and socialisation we have with each other.
In the context of work, as a lot of us have migrated our offices into our lounge rooms or to dining tables, emails won’t be sufficient. Having regular meetings via Zoom or Google Meet means that colleagues can touch base with each other about projects, deadlines, goals and planning. For all those regular “hey, Jen can you take a look at this?” call outs, we use Workplace. It provides a great chat platform to easily get in touch with anyone all day, as well as being perfect for group chats. The main interface allows us to create specific groups for different purposes that any team member can join and follow and it works just like Facebook. This week we started our Ronin Remote Team group, where we are currently sharing tips and resources on working from home, office yoga videos and organisational inspiration. But mostly importantly for us at Ronin, it supports gifs.
Don’t be a stranger
Working remotely, for anyone, obviously takes away daily social interaction with your colleagues. The importance of this interaction becomes extremely clear when humans are deprived of it- even for a short period of time. Therefore, to ensure we all get through the next while of self isolation, remember to check in on each other. Ask how someone’s day is going before getting into the details of your query or request, have the usual ‘what are you up to this weekend?’ conversation (although most people’s answers will now be very similar).
At Ronin, we are really proud to say we work with friends every day. We have been utilising Workplace Chat by Facebook to keep in contact with each other, and have even started group exercise sessions via video chat! This has helped us to keep chatting, smiling and laughing with each other to make it seem like a normal workday.
We are all facing uncertain times that could potentially last for months. We need to show resilience as well as compassion towards one another and be flexible in order to keep our lives in as normal a position as possible. As business owners, it is important to be innovative and flexible to maintain workflow and your duty of care to employees. We must remember that this situation will pass but for now, we must adopt different measures to carry on as ‘normal’.