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Remote Expert Blog

Keep up to date on remote work trends and updates with the Remote Expert blog

[Guest Blog] A day in the life of a criminal law VA.... and other FAQs

I googled VA and thought I CAN DO THIS!  The next day I was on the phone with Ingrid and started my training with her program at The VA Institute. Fast-forward 7 months, I took leave without pay from my full time job with Legal aid in July and jumped head first into starting my own business.

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Setting up your home office for success

Done the wrong way, working from home can be like turning a blender on without the lid fastened. Mess spread everywhere and a lot of mopping up and stress. However, if you are purposeful about working from home – whether that is an occasional or permanent arrangement – it can literally change your life. You just have to know how to do it.

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Empathy is a superpower

Today I found myself vulnerably reaching out to a professional for assistance for my son and felt that I was not understood or validated. It felt like crap. At first I was angry (and I had to struggle not to give this lady an earful). But then I got off the call, took a deep breath and stepped back.

I understood that is how some of my clients must feel when they think about dealing with a lawyer.

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How to hire a virtual assistant

You are up at midnight (again) sending emails. All the coffee in the world isn’t helping keep those tired and bloodshot eyes open. As your head smashes into your keyboard for the third time you think to yourself, “if only I had some help, I could get some sleep and devote more times to my family …….. but I can’t afford it”.

Sound familiar?

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Employers, keep control of flexibility arrangements

Employers, keep control of flexibility arrangements

By Emma Heuston, Founder & Principal Lawyer, The Remote Expert

Did you know that in Australia some employees have the legal right to request flexible working arrangements?  This isn’t a voluntary workplace policy some businesses choose to apply. It is the law for some categories of worker.

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Parental Leave Policies

By Emma Heuston, Principal Lawyer and Head Honcho of the Remote Expert

I am delivering a keynote speech about Workplace Flexibility and Parental Leave at the Remote Future Summit 2019 - hitting your screens later this week.

My keynote will look at how we define parental leave and how government laws surrounding parental leave and flexibility vary between countries. It will also explore how introducing a well thought out parental leave policy can supercharge an organisations ability to attract and retain staff.

While organisations must comply with the minimum relevant requirements of their government, adding a top up or extra to that minimum standard is a powerful signal of a company’s culture and commitment to its team members.

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Employee or contractor – what’s the difference? And why you could be fined if you don’t do it the right way

Is your team member an independent contractor or an employee?

Get it wrong and you can be fined up to $63,000 for sham contracting arrangements AND face further penalties for failing to meet PAYG withholding requirements and a superannuation guarantee charge.

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Remote Future Summit 2019

I have been busy at the Remote Expert HQ pre-recording my keynote speech for the Remote Future Summit on parental leave policies for remote companies.

The Summit is going to take place on 15 – 17 May and promises to be jam packed full of remote work goodness! 

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50 Shades of Remote Work

Remote work is not an “all or nothing” proposition. There are many shades of remote work.

There is the employee who checks their email from a smart phone in a café. That person is working remotely. The team member who works from home every Friday because they are more productive that way, also works remotely.  Then there is the digital nomad who works for an organisation from another time zone and country.  That person is also remote.  As is the person who logs on from home when their child is sick or they need to get more work done of an evening.

 As soon as you permit an employee or contractor to work outside of the office in any way, you need policies, procedures and documentation in place to protect you. Without that framework of protection, you leave yourself open to miscommunication, litigation and risk. 

To add some colour to this article I take a tongue in cheek look at remote work through the lens of the 50 Shades of Grey (50 Shades) book series by E.L James.  Grab a cup of tea, settle on down and see where you fit in to the 50 shades comparison.

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Emma Heuston-Levack
Why Employers Need to Care about Remote Work

contributed by Tara Vasdani, Canadian Lawyer

Employer’s need to care about remote work. Unless organisations address the remote work elephant in the room, they face the prospect of failing to keep up with the evolution of the modern workforce.

This week sees the Remote Work Summit, put on by Grow Remote, April 16-18, 2019. The Summit has crowds from across the globe joining in to listen to speakers from companies like Shopify, Workplaceless, and Distribute Consulting (which is the remote work guru herself - Laurel Farrer).

Today on the blog we unpack why employers need to take a second look at remote work culture.

A cultural shift

The workplace has experienced a sharp cultural shift over the last couple of decades. In a short period of time, remote work has changed.

Gone is the focus of remote work as an employee “perk”. Now, remote work is a valuable productivity tool that allows access to a large talent pool.

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