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Working Remotely During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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7th April 2020

Yep, this is yet another coronavirus related post around working remotely!

I know, I know, so many people have written one if these. I just thought hey, it’s been quite a while since I posted, I might as well too.

Introduction

First of all, let me clarify this post is about how I’m going about my day to day working life during the COVID-19 pandemic. I’m not saying how you should do it, this is just what’s happening in my reality.

Before COVID-19

So before the outbreak, I would commute to London and work in an office with the majority of my team. Some of the team would remote 3 days a week. I’d remote 1 day a week, as I prefer working in the office most of the time.

After COVID-19

We all work remote, 100% of the time, from home.

Routine

So like most people at the moment, my routine has changed a lot. Like many, it means no leaving the house unless absolutely necessary and well, just trips to the park for exercise with my dog for me right now.

Morning

The morning begins with breakfast and play time with pooch followed by making my partner some grub and then a quick run around in the garden. Then at around 8:30 it’s time to grab a coffee and sit down to work.

First up, I check Slack and Trello, do a bit of coding and then join the companies mandatory catch-up Zoom call.

Company Catch-up

The catch-up starts with Leadership and HR checking on the team as a whole. Then the call consists of sales and lead updates, a brief overview of the plan for today with a strong emphasis on what our customers want, especially at this time and how that affects the work we’ll be doing going forward.

Team Stand-up

Following the company catch-up, I have my usual daily team stand-up. Takes a good 15 minutes to see where everyone’s at with sprint work, get through any blockers and then it’s back on with work.

The rest of the mornings are fairly quiet, maybe a bit of pairing over zoom, a few Slack messages to respond to. So yeah, other than that it’s more coding up until around 12:30.

Lunch

Time for a walk to the park with the dog. Naturally, we stay away from everyone right now and I listen to a podcast. Some people are wearing gloves and masks outside, but everyone’s keeping their distance.

Back home, it’s time to make my partner and I a bit of lunch and then we have a bit of chill time.

Afternoon

Back in the home office it’s time for the afternoon session. This brings at least one or two meetings, either UX / UI Design related for future sprint work, a sprint review or even a team based objective workshop (depending on the date).

More often than not though, I fill my afternoons with test automation.

End of the day

Come around 5:30, it’s time to round off the day. I commit any last changes I’ve made, check what deliverables I managed to tick off and update my Trello board. Lastly, I update any tickets I need to in JIRA and sign off for the day.

Job done ?

An important thing to note here though. To keep my mental health in check, when I say I sign off, I mean it. That means no emails, no slack, no code, no work, nothing! I think it’s really important despite the lack of commute and increased time spent at home, to keep that work life balance in check at all times.

I hope you do too ?

Stuff that keeps me going

Like many people around the world, I’m using Slack right now to communicate with my coworkers. Zoom for pairing and general video conferencing.¬†Even my noise cancelling headphones – yep, I still use them even at home!

I’ve also found myself getting into BrainFm – to improve my concentration lately, which I gotta say is awesome! So if you like synth wave, or future synth styled music, this stuff is brilliant to code to! Go check them out ?

Conclusion

So that’s it and to be honest, that’s pretty much me on repeat at the moment. Of course each day brings different working challenges. So every day you’ll be slacking different people working on different things.

To be frank though, many engineering teams are actually really well placed for home working. So nothing feels like it’s changed much at all! I can still collaborate with my team whenever I need to. Meetings still take place as before.

If anything things actually feel slightly more productive!

Anyway that’s my reality at the moment and that’s what it’s like for me working remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.¬†

How’s you’re remote working going?


Ordinal Walker

P-S-C-D-W

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