How to Work Remotely: 5 Things You Need to Know


How do you get tens of thousands of employees to work remotely? Many companies have been asking this question since March. Our partners at Microsoft want to help everyone answer this question, with products such as Microsoft Teams and Surface devices. As you move to remote work, here are five key habits that will set you up for success.

Set up your workspace – desk optional!

If you don’t have a home office, don’t worry. You can still work remotely and be productive. Microsoft Teams is designed as a virtual office you can take anywhere you go. While you may not have a printer, physical files or a desk phone at your home workspace, you can pull up documents directly in Teams, securely store files where the right people can access them, and quickly jump into calls and meetings.

Maintain your productivity levels with Microsoft 365-powered Surface devices, which give users up to five hours in weekly productivity gains.2  Review documents in high resolution with PixelSense Display touch screens, and collaborate in real time with colleagues using the inking capabilities of Surface Pen1.

How to communicate while working remotely

While many of us work remotely at least part of the time, we still rely on rhythms and core hours that are built around our physical presence at the office. That’s why you should clearly communicate your working hours with your teammates and collaborators so that they know when to reach you. You can set a status message in Teams to share this information proactively.

Surface devices let you communicate however you want to with an interactive touchscreen that is optimized with strengthened glass for worry-free daily use. Write, sketch, charge and repeat with rechargeable Surface Slim Pen, featuring tilt for shading, exceptional pressure sensitivity and virtually no lag.

Embrace virtual meetings

In the absence of a physical conference room, bringing everyone together can feel like the biggest remote-work challenge of all. As you move meetings to Microsoft Teams, make sure all meetings have a virtual “join” option to create an online conference room.

Also, it’s a good idea that all participants turn on video if they are comfortable doing so. The face-to-face interaction goes a long way to help everyone feel connected. For an ideal virtual meeting experience, you can connect through high-resolution Microsoft Teams video calls with front-and-rear facing HD cameras on all Microsoft Surface devices1.

Record your virtual meeting with Microsoft Teams

To compensate for lack of face time, some remote workers schedule extra meetings in order to stay connected with customers, partners and coworkers. Double-bookings can be hard to avoid. If your organization allows it, record meetings in Teams so coworkers can catch up later. If you can’t attend yourself, remind the organizer to record in your absence.

Your recorded virtual meeting will benefit from the same call quality during Microsoft Teams meetings with dual far-field mics and immersive Dolby Audio Premium sound speakers on Surface devices.

How to make up for missing hallway talk

A lot of remote workers find the thing they miss the most about the office is having casual conversations with their colleagues. Chats at the watercooler or snack shelf not only keep us connected, they often give us important information or insights we wouldn’t have known otherwise.

When you work remotely, be deliberate about reaching out and connecting with your co-workers. Think of chat messages as your virtual watercooler and set yourself a reminder to check in with people regularly. Emojis, GIFs and stickers are a fun way to keep the chatter fun and light.

How to connect Microsoft Teams for working remotely

Whether working remotely or in the office, every individual and team works differently. Hopefully, these tips can help you stay productive and connected as you adjust to a new way of working.

And remember, you can start using Teams today with CDW Teams Jumpstart service, which has everything you need to get Microsoft Teams with Office up and running. Learn more at

1 Software licence required for some features. Accessories and some apps sold separately.

2 Source: ​Maximizing Your ROI From Microsoft 365 Enterprise With Microsoft Surface, a commissioned Total Economic Impact™ study conducted by Forrester Consulting, May 2018