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The rent was canceled and the fish were taken home – how the offices go to the “udalenka”

In many European countries, quarantine has been introduced in connection with the coronavirus pandemic – public places are closed, companies are switching to remote work from home. No quarantine has been announced in Belarus and Russia, but many companies declare a “remote site” themselves. We learned from these companies how they organized work for the period of self-quarantine – perhaps these ideas will be useful to you.

More than 60 companies from Belarus and Russia responded to the request of our journalist Anastasia Bondarovich per day. They switch to remote work for at least a week, some predict that such a regime could last several months. For many companies, udalenka is new, and they urgently create a list of principles for working at home for their employees. Many note that they were not attached to the office before.

But do not let this material create the feeling that all the offices are empty – many companies, including large ones, remain working normally.

“We recommend working at least at the kitchen table – most importantly, there is nothing superfluous on it”
Yan Shpichinetsky

PR Director of SMIT Interactive Marketing Studio. Studio
– We transferred employees to remote work from March 16, while for 2 weeks. We are not very dependent on spot offline work, and employees are not required to come to the office every day, but some of the processes urgently had to be transformed into online. What have we done:

1. For communication and convenience, we made a working server in Discord, where we can communicate by voice, chat, and collect planning meetings.

2. Employees have prepared short instructions on how to create a workspace at home and not lose efficiency. Among the tips:

Organize a dedicated place for work. It could even be a kitchen table. The main thing is that during working hours there should be nothing superfluous on it
Bring space in a clean state. Any garbage can distract
Use lighting when working in dark places or at night
Work on the Pomodoro principle to focus on specific tasks
Minimize communication with a partner / parents / pets and other partners during working hours
Stay connected and on the Discord server during business hours.
“Introduced doctors online consultations”
Snezhana Suryaeva
The owner of the veterinary clinic Vetmedtsentr
– For 2 weeks we have quarantined measures: antiseptic for patients, admission in different rooms, airing after each admission. The team is forbidden to stay in the same room with the whole team – for example, at lunch. While we do not plan to close, we cannot, because our work is related to saving lives. On Monday, we launched a new direction – a doctor’s consultation via Skype. This works for those who need urgent help without direct contact with a doctor and who cannot go to the clinic. If, after consultation, a decision is made that a visit to the clinic is necessary, then payment is set off in person. It’s hard to say how this will affect our business. But yesterday, revenue decreased by 50%.

“Productivity in the Chinese office has grown”
Mikhail Preobrazhensky, Director, China Office, Affise
Affise China Office Marketing Platform Office Director
– We transferred offices in 6 countries (Belarus, Lithuania, China, India, Israel, Cyprus) to удал udalenka ’, which is 120+ employees. We attend 40+ conferences a year around the world, and some were canceled in a couple of weeks (and even days) when tickets are non-refundable and employees are sent. Upon returning from a business trip, employees were expected to be quarantined for 14 days. And when the United States announced a ban on entry, it jeopardized the departure of our employees from there. Flights were canceled, we still do not know what awaits our employees upon arrival home.

But most of all went to the Chinese office. All staff were on holiday for the Chinese New Year. With the spread of the virus, all roads within the country were blocked, holidays were extended for a week. Our office first of all in China went to work remotely. At the time of the outbreak of coronavirus, I was in Manila, on vacation. Despite the fact that all the employees had just completed the training and were still very dependent on my decisions, I managed to set up the office remotely: we made plans for the month, for the week, set up regular one-to-one meetings and team meetings. Surprisingly, productivity has grown. This is partly due to the low base effect, since our representative office in China opened only in the summer of 2019.

The next challenge was administrative issues. We are working at full strength, but China is not. Banks, partners, contractors, service companies still did not even go to remote work, and when they left, they were absolutely not ready. They did not have the elementally needed stamps, computers, printers, and so on. The biggest blow came in marketing.

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