How to be successful working remotely
Historically, ‘remote work’ at Liferay has not been widely discussed or promoted, and until now there haven't been clear policies or guidelines.
The ironic thing is that — if you think about it, we’re all already remote. Designers working in Los Angeles need to collaborate remotely with engineers in Spain and Brazil. The CEO works remotely with general managers, salespeople, and others all over the world.
Our goal, as a Design Department is to operationalize effective remote practices to reduce costs (fewer face-to-face meetings) and grow revenue (increased productivity).
Too often, we focus on the “remote” aspect, dealing with problems that have long since been solved by software and processes. In our experience, what we actually need to be focused more on is the “work” aspect. If we empower our teammates to work effectively, where they do it is not that important. By strengthening the culture for remote teammates, we can exponentially expand the talent pool and provide our existing team with better opportunities to reach their full potential to serve others.
Although this is entitled “Working Remotely” — it is by no means meant to create a distinction between people who work inside of an office that Liferay owns or pays rent for, and those who work out of their home, a co-working space, or the moon.
...productivity arguments aside, there are two even better reasons to incorporate remote work into your operational model: inclusion and diversity.
Inclusion means putting systems in place that let people of all types participate easily, and add value.
Diversity brings a variety of identities, and therefore perspectives, to an organization. This is a resource of incalculable value. Dave Malouf in Getting Remote Work Right
Who Works Remotely?
As mentioned, we are all at some level, working remotely as a distributed team. That being said, most designers are working relatively close to one of our physical locations. Eschborn, Diamond Bar, Madrid, Milan, Recife, and more. For the purposes of this policy — the word “remote” should be interpreted as “not in a local office”.
Flexible schedules are a perk of working at Liferay. We trust everyone that we hire — after all, if we can’t trust you to work when Juan isn’t over your shoulder, then we can’t trust you to work here at all.
We do not currently have any designers that are completely detached from a local Liferay office. As we continue to refine our policies and procedures, we hope to be able to open up positions for remote teammates in places where we do not yet have physical Liferay offices.
Scheduled Remote Days
To regularly work remotely, a designer needs to be able to autonomously work effectively. Early-career designers should be completely onboarded and fully equipped before establishing regular home-office days and subject to manager and team-lead approval.
Occasional Remote Days
Anyone on the team is encouraged to take a remote day on occasions when removing a commute would be helpful. For example, if your commute is typically more than 20 minutes and you have a dentist appointment that day — that’s a great reason to work at home.