Research Outline

Motivating Remote Employees During COVID-19


To provide a list of 10 creative and unique ways companies are motivating their remote employees during the COVID-19 pandemic and statistics to support the importance of boosting employee morale.

Early Findings

  • In 2020, a survey of "3,500 remote workers from around the world" by Buffer and AngelList reported that 20% of remote workers struggle with loneliness. Another 20% struggle with collaboration and communication with teams, while 7% find it difficult to stay motivated.

Ways to Keep Employees Motivated

  • Recognize and reward good works: Companies can motivate their remote employees by taking "extra steps to recognize and if practical, reward employees for going the extra mile to help colleagues and customers." Rewards and recognition can also be given for acts of kindness outside the office especially in fighting COVID-19, such as donating to charities. Rewards may be in the form of local gift cards and shopping vouchers, buying employees' lunch from afar. Recognition can be done online through public channels like Slack or rewards recognition platforms for workspaces such as Perkbox.
  • Enable teamwork and collaboration: With 20% of remote workers struggling with collaboration and communication, it is important for companies to make sure remote employees connect with other members of the team through social collaboration tools and office interactions. Companies can schedule "virtual coffee chats with team members in between meetings for friendly, non-work conversation." The use of GIFs and emojis for self-expression should be encouraged.
  • Leveraging technology to enhance communication: In making a "workforce feel more included," email alone is insufficient, it is important to use the latest communication tools such as video conferencing apps and other tools(Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, Slack, etc) to keep employees engaged and motivated. Through effective communication and powerful presentations, companies can share information with employees, solicit ideas, and provide guidance.
  • Professional development: Providing opportunities for professional development is an effective way to keep employees motivated and engaged. These opportunities include "tackling new projects, learning new skills, and developing one's repertoire." Companies can give their employees discounts when registering for online courses, or if practical, "register their teams for online classes." In fact, 70% of respondents in a recent survey indicated that "job-related training and development opportunities influenced their decision to stay at their job."