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How to Know If Your Telecommuters Are Really Working

If an employee comes under suspicion of not working at capacity -- or perhaps even moonlighting -- working for more than one employer at once -- there are some practical ways to keep tabs, Shanti says.

Employers can set up regular in-person check-ins in which the employee is required to present a progress report that highlights outstanding tasks and priorities. Additionally, the employee could be asked to track their time.

"This can be part of a collaborative exercise to see where they are spending most of their efforts and if any recalibration is needed for the best results. It can also uncover where there may be skill gaps, resource gaps, etc. For hourly workers, or workers who bill their time, this is something that should be happening regardless," she says.

When placing workers in remote positions, Shanti advises looking for employees who have experience working successfully from home.

"During the reference check process, I would recommend specifically asking questions in this area," she says. "Some folks just don't do well working in a home environment -- often because they are challenged with a feeling of isolation and being disconnected. Or they simply have a hard time focusing on their job because their workspace is not set up to separate them from their nonwork life."

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