Remote workers, or people who don’t work in traditional offices, are the future of the workforce. Hiring a remote team reduces overhead costs like the need for office space, computers, and supplies.
According to statistics, as the number of remote workers continues to increase, 40% of worldwide companies are taking on a mix of in-office and remote workers. Of course, traditional management techniques don’t always work with virtual teams. Here are some tips to help you hire and manage remote workers successfully:
When interviewing candidates, look for self-motivated people who work well independently. Previous experience in a remote environment is a plus. Working from home can come with many distractions, from household chores to Netflix. Find individuals who can handle a virtual work environment.
Thanks to the rise of remote workplaces, online tools can help you with recruiting and human resources tasks. For example, BambooHR can handle payroll, benefits, and other important tasks. These tools are helpful if you’re short on time or can’t afford to hire full-time human resources team members.
The remote job market can be competitive, so prepare to sift through stacks of resumes. If you plan to hire W-2 employees, you can post jobs to traditional job boards, remote-specific job boards like FlexJobs, and social networks like LinkedIn. If you’re hiring freelancers, however, you’ll want to seek out sites that your ideal freelancers already use. For instance, if you’re looking for remote writers, post your job to a freelance writer job board.
According to Toggl, your hiring success depends upon how you word your job description and where you post it. Clearly define the job duties, mention that it’s a remote or work-from-home role, and share it on job boards for remote workers.
Communication is crucial to any team, especially when workers are remotely located around the world. Proper, timely communication reduces the need for micromanagement by ensuring everyone’s on the same page. To boost your project management and ensure your team is meeting deadlines, schedule regular team calls and one-on-one check-ins with all employees. Just be careful about how many meetings you schedule each day; meeting overkill burns out your employees by reducing how much time they’re able to work on projects
Consider transcribing call notes and sharing them with your workers after each meeting. That way, if anyone misses the call or forgets to take notes, they have all the details in writing. Because transcription can be a tedious process, consider using an automated speech-to-text transcription service. Some of these services can provide the notes in minutes, with affordable pricing as low as .10 cents per minute. Transcription services save you time, money, and hassle, so you can focus on more significant tasks like managing your team.
Another method of communication is using real-time messaging tools like Slack, Google chat, or email. That way, you can efficiently stay in touch and updated throughout each workday. Additionally, When I Work recommends keeping everyone up to date by regularly sending out announcements. While transparency and communication are essential at any company, they’re crucial to the success and retention of remote workers.
Project management can be tricky, even in an office environment. When it comes to managing remote teams, SHRM says clearly-defined SMART (Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Relevant, Timely) goals are essential. That way, you’ll meet deadlines without micromanaging workers.
Several apps are designed to help you manage more effectively. Inc.com advises choosing tools that meet your team’s size, “communication preferences, and ease of use.” For instance, you might use Harvest for time-tracking and payroll or AirTable for team collaboration, rather than manually tracking everything yourself.
Although a remote workplace brings some unique challenges, it’s also incredibly rewarding. With some strategic planning, open communication, effective team building, and modern technology, hiring a remote team can be a seamless experience. Eventually, you might find that managing an offsite team is very similar to working in an office with your coworkers. Regardless of office location, your business will flourish with communication, support, and the right people.