Over the past decade, the number of remote employees has increased by 159%. Also, 16% of organizations are fully remote. As technology continues to advance, these figures will most likely go up.
With this trend, you might be feeling the pressure to build a remote team. You’ll have no option but to jump on the trend, especially if you want to attract skilled employees who value flexibility and a better work-life balance.
But how do you build and manage a remote team that will make your business thrive? It’s not as difficult as you might think.
By following a few simple tips, you can build a strong foundation for a successful remote team. So read on to learn the steps you should take if you’re ready to build a remote team that rocks.
Determine the Remote Team Structure
Before building a remote team, you should determine your remote team’s structure. Choosing the structure means deciding whether you want the whole team to work remotely or whether only a few members will work from home.
You should also decide whether the remote team members will be from the same geographical location or different locations across the world or country. Ask yourself whether they will embrace the work-from-home business model every day or report to the office on some days.
The structure you choose will depend on your business needs. You should bear in mind that there are situations that might require all your team members to work remotely. So, it’ll be best to choose a structure that will ensure you still get work done.
Recruit Disciplined Employees
The next step is to recruit disciplined employees willing to work from home. You should give preference to those with a proven track record of working remotely and successfully meeting deadlines.
Also, consider that working from home can be quite challenging for some people. So, you should only hire self-motivated employees who can work independently with little or no supervision.
It’s also essential to find employees who are good at time management and have excellent organizational skills. These are vital qualities that will enable them to work from home without distractions.
Finally, don’t forget to check whether the potential candidates have good communication skills. This is essential since they won’t be able to work side by side with you or their colleagues.
Set Up Ground Rules
You should clearly outline the expectations and guidelines that the remote team should adhere to. Ensure that every team member understands the expectations to prevent misunderstandings and conflicts.
One of the things you can include in the guidelines is who the team members should contact. Other things you should include in the ground rules are work hours, break times, communication channels, and expectations for meeting deadlines.
It’s also essential to set up rules for how team members should work together when they’re not in the same physical space. For example, you should decide whether they should use video conferencing or chat rooms when communicating.
Give Your Remote Team the Right Work Tools
Your remote team will need the right work tools to work from home. These work tools will help them stay connected and collaborate with other team members.
Some of the essential work tools your remote team should have include:
- A secure and reliable VPN
- Communication and collaboration tools
- Project management software
- A work-from-home policy
By providing your remote team with the right work tools, you’ll make it easier for them to do their job and stay connected.
Ensure Effective Communication
Your remote team members need to communicate effectively, especially if they’re in different time zones. The best way to ensure this is to have regular online and offline team meetings. During the team meetings, make sure that everyone has a chance to contribute.
Ensure that you choose open channels of communication that will allow the team members to communicate with you or their colleagues. No remote team members should feel forgotten because they can’t get in touch with others. Make sure you update everyone on what’s happening.
During the onboarding process, you should share your communication guidelines with new remote team members. Ensure you explain the preferred communication channel and tools.
Also, be clear on when the team prefers communicating and the expected turnaround time for communications, such as emails.
Use Time Tracking Tools
Having a remote team doesn’t mean you have to give up team management best practices. You can still manage your team members and ensure that they meet their time requirements.
If you want your remote team to be productive, you should consider using time tracking tools. These tools will help you see how the team members are spending their time and whether they’re meeting deadlines.
There are various time tracking tools available, so choose one that will work best for your business needs. Some of the things you should look for in a time tracking tool include features, ease of use, and integrations.
The tools will help you calculate how much you need to pay your remote employees, depending on their work hours.
Conduct Regular Performance Evaluations
Just because your team members work from home doesn’t mean you can’t evaluate their performance. You should still conduct regular performance evaluations to ensure that they’re meeting their goals and objectives.
When conducting performance evaluations, you should consider work quality, work ethic, attendance, and attitude. These factors will help you determine whether the team member is a good fit for the work-from-home business model.
You should ensure that your performance management system supports remote work and can provide ongoing feedback. You can check out extra resources to determine whether your system is the right fit for your remote team and whether you need to fix it.
Follow These Tips to Build a Remote Team
If you want to build a remote team that rocks, you should follow the steps outlined in this article. In addition to setting up your team, you should ensure you implement the right management principles. Otherwise, your remote team will fail before it meets the set objectives.
The above tips will help you manage aspects like your team’s communication and meeting deadlines. So, follow the steps above to ensure you put an effective team in place without straining.
If you’re interested in more business tips, check out the rest of our blog.