The Virtual Vocations Remote Work Schedule Templates feature is a blueprint for improved work-life integration while working remotely. It outlines daily scheduling ideas and resources for telework professionals who are homeschooling children, working from home as single parents, telecommuting as coworking parents, and working remotely on an alternative schedule such as early in the morning or late at night.
Schedule planning is not an innate skill for every remote worker. To help telecommuters stay organized during the workweek, we created a Weekly Calendar Template as part of our remote work blueprint.
The Weekly Calendar Template features fillable sections for goals, daily to-dos or recaps, and notes. This is an evergreen weekly calendar PDF that also features a dropdown menu to input daily dates as well as a field to enter the month and year. Follow this URL or click the button below to view and download our weekly calendar template.
Virtual Vocations has also developed additional remote work blueprints to assist remote workers with navigating areas of life and work including relationships and wellness. Select either of the following links to view expert remote work tips and free resources for telework professionals:
- Creating & Maintaining Relationships with Remote Co-Workers Blueprint
- A Holistic Approach to Remote Work Blueprint
Remote Work Schedule Templates Blueprint for Specific Lifestyles
The number of people working remotely has never been higher. “Regular work-at-home has grown 173% since 2005, 11% faster than the rest of the workforce (which grew 15%) and nearly 47x faster than the self-employed population (which grew by 4%), according to Global Workplace Analytics’ 2018 ACS data analysis. In 2019 and 2020, the demand for remote jobs increased, in part, due to factors like the following:
- The rising popularity of the digital nomad lifestyle,
- More professionals seeking part-time and supplemental income after retirement, and
- Shifting work model priorities addressing public health emergencies, traffic congestion, and inclement weather concerns.
The Virtual Vocations jobs database reflects this premium interest in telecommuting occupations. From 2015 to 2019, the Virtual Vocations job board grew by 197%, and in July 2020, we celebrated a record-breaking month with more than 41,000 total remote jobs added to the job board.
Among Virtual Vocations members, the primary reason for seeking a remote job is increased schedule flexibility. Modern professionals want more control over how they spend their time, especially when combining their professional and personal lives in a shared space. Our Remote Work Schedule Templates are designed to help telecommuters in a variety of lifestyles better manage their time and, in turn, become more successful while working remotely and enjoying their daily lives.
10 Types of Remote Work Schedule Activities
Within the remote work scheduling templates to follow, remote workers will have opportunities to plan their days around the following types of work and activities:
1. Focused Work: Focused Work refers to tasks that require high degrees of alertness and concentration to execute them accurately and effectively. Examples include creating and editing reports and spreadsheets, writing and editing, planning and strategizing, budgeting, and developing proposals and pitches for clients.
Note: In schooling scenarios, Focused Work is the time when children work self-directed on individual assignments.
2. Responsive Work: Answering emails and instant messages, returning phone calls, and adding to project threads in remote communication and collaborative apps, like Slack and Basecamp, are all types of Responsive Work common to remote workers.
Note: In schooling scenarios, Responsive Work is the time when children ask questions about assignments or receive feedback on work.
3. Collaborative Work: Work done in cooperation with others or work that will directly impact others, such as brainstorming, engaging on social media, and project development, is considered Collaborative Work.
Note: In schooling scenarios, Collaborative Work is the time when children work with parents on projects or assignments requiring instruction, guidance, or assistance from adults.
4. Maintenance Work: Routine tasks related to work and daily life as a professional fall under the Maintenance Work category. Common examples of Maintenance Work include performing virus scans and cybersecurity updates, deleting and organizing files, paying bills, relationship building, and skills building.
5. Care Time: Self-care is critical. Care Time is for moments of personal hygiene, meditation or quiet reflection, eating and hydrating, and other essential well-being practices. This is also time for caring for others within your home including sharing meals and helping kids get ready for school or bed.
6. Leisure Time: Allotting special time to enjoy hobbies, indulge in distractions, play games, or binge favorite shows will lessen the likelihood of those activities leading to counterproductivity during regular work periods.
7. Unity Time: This is the time to come together for quality moments with family, friends, and loved ones. The goal of Unity Time is to be present while prioritizing one activity rather than multi-tasking, which is typical throughout normal work and school hours.
8. Active Time: Engaging in regular physical activity is good for the mind and body. Adults should engage in 150 minutes of aerobic activities (e.g. walking briskly, swimming, jogging, etc.) per week, according to CDC guidelines; two days per week of muscle-strengthening activities (e.g. lifting weights, working with resistance bands, yoga, etc.) are also recommended.
9. Sleep Time: Getting adequate sleep is essential to overall well-being and job performance. While the amount of sleep each person needs to function properly varies based on individual health and age, the Mayo Clinic recommends that adults get seven to nine hours of sleep within a 24-hour period.
10. Unscripted Time: Unscripted Time is just that: free, creative, improvised time for extra work, play, or doing absolutely nothing.
Lifestyle-Specific Remote Work Schedule Templates for a Variety of Telecommuters
The 10 types of remote work schedule activities outlined above are to be used as a guide to help telecommuters plan days that make sense to them, their life priorities, and their work processes. Our remote work schedule templates focus on the following types of telecommuters:
- Homeschooling Parents
- Single Parents
- Coworking Parents
- Alternative Schedules
For each remote work group, we have listed actionable steps for members of those telework sectors to achieve better work-life integration. We have also provided a curated calendar template to help with daily planning centered on the 10 types of remote work schedule activities we detailed. This offers maximum flexibility for remote workers seeking greater cohesion between all aspects of their lives.
Further Reading from Virtual Vocations: What Telecommute Jobseekers Want Most: Flexibility
Remote Work Schedule for Homeschooling Parents
3 Actionable Steps for Homeschooling Parents to Achieve Work-Life Integration in a Remote Work Schedule
Homeschooling parents work remotely while also teaching their children at home or another location that is not a centralized school. In homeschooling scenarios, as with other learning arrangements, parents and children may work through pre-designed curriculum programs and/or a tutor.
When creating a remote work schedule, homeschooling parents can achieve better work-life integration using the following actionable steps:
- Respect kids’ age differences, which may include creating age-based school schedules in homes with multiple children and adjusting remote work schedules to meet those needs.
- Use a public school calendar as a month-to-month guide for holidays, local and national events, and extracurricular activities, which is especially important for telecommuting parents in states that allow homeschool children to participate in public school activities.
- Work while the kids work during Focused Time.
Further Reading from Virtual Vocations: Your Guide to Back-to-School Season During COVID-19
Remote Work Schedule for Single Parents
3 Actionable Steps for Single Parents to Achieve Work-Life Integration in a Remote Work Schedule
Single parents are members of solo-parent or caregiver households in which they work remotely while also serving as primary care providers for their children. Children may attend on-site schools, hybrid classrooms, virtual schools, or be homeschooled.
When creating a remote work schedule, single parents can achieve better work-life integration using the following actionable steps:
- Leave room for flexibility.
- Abandon screen time guilt.
- Utilize outside or in-home childcare as needed.
Further Reading from Virtual Vocations: 9 Remote Jobs for Parents with School-Aged Children
Remote Work Schedule for Coworking Parents
3 Actionable Steps for Coworking Parents to Achieve Work-Life Integration in a Remote Work Schedule
Coworking parents are members of dual-parent or caregiver households in which two adults share caregiving duties as well as telecommute together either within separate home offices or a shared work and/or living spaces. Alternatively, they may rent space in a coworking center to have flexible, but non-centralized office space, outside the home.
When creating a remote work schedule, coworking parents can achieve better work-life integration using the following actionable steps:
- Tag team parenting duties.
- Keep work and family spaces organized and decluttered.
- Prioritize solo work time.
Further Reading from Virtual Vocations: Coworking from Home: 9 Tips to Keep Your Relationship Strong
Remote Work Schedules for Alternative Work Styles
3 Actionable Steps for Morning People and Night Owls to Achieve Work-Life Integration in a Remote Work Schedule
Remote workers do not always operate on the classic 9-to-5 work schedule. Whether by choice or via the requirements of their remote jobs, some telecommuters may need to work on alternative work schedules like working late or very early in the morning. Morning People and Night Owls can make strides to improved remote work-life integration with these three steps:
- Be mindful of caffeine intake.
- Work during the most productive hours.
- Explore Flex-Schedule Careers.
Further Reading from Virtual Vocations: Ways to Encourage Remote Employees to Relax During the Workday
Remote Work Schedules and the Role of Management
“Most people think that empathy is something you have only with friends and the family, but in reality, it is also a priority in business.”
—Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft
3 Best Business Practices for Leaders to Accommodate Remote Work Schedules for Specific Lifestyles
Remote leaders who make deliberate efforts to understand and support their employees are the most successful. When employees, especially those who work remotely, feel appreciated by their employers and managers, they are more likely to stay in their jobs, enjoy better rates of production, and experience higher overall satisfaction in their lives and work.
These best business practices will inspire and facilitate remote leaders to accommodate remote work schedules for the unique telecommuters they employ as well as enable them in long-term success as they work toward lasting organization and better time management.
1. Outline Two-Way Telework Expectations in a Well-Written Remote Work Policy
A well-written remote work policy is the bread and butter of telework manager and employee relationships. Regarding schedules, remote work policies should detail options offered to employees and how staff can utilize them. For example, policies should outline company holidays, procedures for requesting time off, and how to “call in” sick or inform about a sudden personal emergency. Meanwhile, private employee contracts and human resources files will keep track of scheduling events such as vacation and sick days used as well as the number of personal emergencies claimed.
2. Empathize with Employees When Inevitable Delays or Problems Arise
Even under the best circumstances, challenges to productivity and corporate culture can arise when employees work at home. When a lack of empathy exists between remote managers and their employees, remote workplace problems, such as miscommunication, lack of trust, and disengagement, have the potential to increase.
3. Look to Outcomes Rather than Processes
Results-based work models mean freedom for employees to keep their lives, rather than their jobs, at the center of their priorities. By focusing more on outcomes rather than processes, employees feel less pressure to choose work over their personal matters. This leads to reduced workplace stress for employees and stronger results for employers; employees who are happy perform better.
Everyone wins when outcomes are most valued but homeschool parents, single parents, coworking parents, and telecommuters who prefer alternative work schedules especially benefit from this approach to remote management. Parents do not have to say no to attending school functions because they are tied up with a work project. Caregivers do not have to sacrifice personal or sick days to take their loved ones to medical appointments. Morning people and night owls can work at times that are most conducive to their creativity and efficiency.
Related: 10 Practices To Set You Up For Success While Working From Home by Virtual Vocations CEO Laura Spawn, Forbes Human Resources Council Member
With Virtual Vocations’ Remote Work Schedule Templates Blueprint for Specific Lifestyles, homeschooling parents, single parents, coworking parents, and teleworkers who operate on alternative schedules can maximize their telecommuting flexibility. Through actionable steps for remote workers and best practices for managers overseeing distributed teams, creating and utilizing efficient, organized remote work schedules are a present reality for modern, self-driven professionals.
Which of these schedule templates is right for you? Do you plan to use our blueprint to guide you in creating your own remote work schedule? Connect with Virtual Vocations on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube to share your thoughts on this blog post and find more remote work content and conversations.
Image credits: Canva; Virtual Vocations images and PDFs designed by Kimberly Back
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