In the last couple of months, the world has witnessed the unimaginable. The COVID-19 pandemic has affected businesses across the globe and prevented them from traveling to their workplace. Organizations that had done their preparation for a global crisis suffered nonetheless. Remote work is set to become the new norm, with businesses operating beginning to operate from virtual offices. Many business owners and managers are now struggling to maintain their remote teams and may continue to face such issues. Albeit, managing remote teams is a simpler task than it may seem to some businesses.
Remote work is now a necessity for employers rather than an option. Business leaders and entrepreneurs need to adapt and find the best ways to manage remote teams. The task may look intimidating, especially to first-time managers or business owners who were not prepared for this sudden pause.
For some businesses, the customary remote-work strategies and tools may have worked. However, the sheer impact and unpredictability of this crisis require a business to find better strategies. A business must look for unconventional ways to manage remote teams and ensure seamless operations.
Tested Tips for Managing Remote Teams
Here are some tried and tested tips for managing remote teams and ensuring constant productivity and positive results for the business:
Ensure End-to-End Security
Managing remote teams requires a robust Information Technology framework for the business. Similarly, maintaining the security and quality of the IT infrastructure is equally important for the business. This includes alerts against phishing, fraudulent messages or emails, data storage, and secure data transfer. It is critical for the business to establish secure channels for sensitive data transfer within the company and with clients. The business must also have the right security tools to identify legitimate data attachments. Password-protected access is another way to ensure that data is accessed securely.
Leverage Technology For Managing Remote Teams
Another effective way of managing remote teams is to stay connected with the employees consistently. Finding the right technologies to maintain a constant flow of communication between the company and its employees is crucial. Video calling tools, cloud data storage, and task-assignment tools are some options that can be considered for a remote office.
Consider Network Troubles Of Employees
Employees may face power cuts or network issues that can disable them from staying constantly connected to the employer. This may affect their ability to deliver the employee’s high expectations since their overall activity may be lower. An employer must, therefore, find alternative ways to connect with the employees via telephonic conversations. Daily goals can be set to receive work reports at the end of the day to estimate employee productivity.
Keep The Workflow Simple
It is also essential to keep the workflow simple and achievable, without any unnecessary red-tapism. A company can maintain its applications on the cloud for easier remote access by the employees. Another way is to use a task assignment tool to assign and track the work that an employee needs to do in a specific period of time.
Prioritize Results, Not Activity
While activity tracking tools are rampantly used by employers, it is advised not to use such tools to calculate an employee’s performance. It may be impossible for an employee to maintain a high level of activity or working hours while working from home. Additionally, the nature of the work may also prevent an employee from maintaining a high percentage of work activity throughout the day. It is, therefore, suggested to focus on the results achieved at the end of the day rather than device activity.
Brace For The Long Haul
Nobody can predict how long the coronavirus travel advisories or lockdowns may last worldwide. It is important to prepare the business for the long term by adopting technologies, reporting tools, and remote work policies. A business must leverage digital communication tools and update its management strategies if it hasn’t already.
Be Available For Employee Support
The sudden disruption in the workflow may affect and distress not only the managers but also their employees. It is essential to establish a free flow of communication to allow employees to list their concerns and issues before the company. Employers must also make sure that employees are able to voice their opinions and anxieties relating to the remote work or any other work-related issues.
Lead By Example
An employer must lead by example. A company must ensure that it is going in the right direction to keep its employees happy and efficient. For this, optimism and encouragement can help managers in boosting the confidence and productivity of their team. Working from home may be a tad more difficult for certain individuals who have to juggle between their personal and professional lives. A company must empathize and understand the employee’s problems and allow them to work in a more accepting environment.
Trust The Workforce
A company must also trust its employees and believe that they would work in synergy with the goals and mission of the company. An employer must, therefore, learn to efficiently manage its workforce without constant surveillance over them and allow flexibility and freedom in their work.
Hire Remote Workers
The most efficient way of managing remote teams is to hire employees who would be comfortable with working remotely in the long run. A company can opt for remote workers and hire individuals who are on-board with the idea of a virtual office rather than a physical brick and mortar room. This would also allow a company to hire professionals from distant locations and leverage the global recruitment market to hire quality talent.
How PEOs Simplify Managing Remote Teams
For some companies, remote work may have become the new normal. However, for others, it may remain a pain point in the long run. The transition to a virtual office from a physical workspace may be a difficult task for both the employer and employees. Thus, seeking the assistance of a PEO may help the business to solve this issue.
New Horizon Global Partners provide end-to-end employment management, payroll management, recruitment assistance, and compliance guidance to companies. NHGP can help businesses in efficiently managing remote teams and running their operations virtually in domestic as well as global markets. Associating with an International PEO like NHGP can allow businesses to focus on their productivity and result, while its HR requirements are managed remotely by the PEO.