Professional development is crucial to the growth of all individuals and businesses, whether you own a portfolio of facilities or are just starting out in your first maintenance role. 

Offering opportunities for your employees to upskill and further develop their skills enhances their job satisfaction, motivation and productivity, which ultimately leads to higher-quality output and growth within the company. However, with the demand for flexibility and remote working opportunities growing in all industries, it’s important to consider the impact this has on professional development.

For industries such as maintenance and facility management, where many jobs are hands-on and need to be completed onsite, does remote working help or hinder professional development? 

Here we take a look at the possible ways you may be able to include remote working in your business, whilst continuing to support professional development. 

Use technology

There is an ever-increasing number of technological advancements which can make remote working a possibility for those needing to manage properties and assets. By using an integrated software system that shows your requests, inventory and plans all in one place, you’ll be able to access vital information from anywhere and reduce the need for set offices. This can reduce your expenses as well as provide your team with a more desirable work-life balance.

Learning to use the latest applications and technology systems is great for your professional development, and demonstrates your ability to adapt between both onsite and remote roles. Many systems are built specifically for your needs, to help you manage your business operations remotely without sacrificing efficiency, quality or productivity. 

Flexible hours

It’s important to encourage flexibility within your workforce, as it creates a win-win situation for both business and employer, as well as building accountability and reinforcing a trusting work culture. Consider flexible roles such as the four-day working week, or splitting time between onsite and remote hours. With the right technology and support, most paperwork can be completed remotely.

Although remote working may require a little more effort to set up and sustain positive relationships between your team members, with as many as 76% of people wanting flexible working hours, it seems a wise investment to any business. Hosting regular, virtual catch-ups with both onsite and remote employees will help to keep everyone in the loop. 

Showcase adaptability

Ultimately, by proving you can adapt and work in a variety of environments, you will be enhancing your CV and adding value to your skillset which will go a long way to furthering your career. Of course, not every job role can be done remotely, especially in FM and maintenance. However, introducing flexibility into your working schedule is a great way to keep the top talent invested in your company. Be sure to also keep professional development in mind and adapt the ways in which you can continue to support remote employees with learning new skills.

Look to the future

With remote working fast becoming the norm for many, it’s important for facility managers and owners to try and incorporate the benefits of this relatively new way of working within their teams. With a little adjustment, it’s more than possible to further professional development whilst working remotely.