The Internet has changed the global economy. Instead of relying on large headquarters to manage a team of in-house employees, companies are now able to hire workers from across the globe, working with and managing them remotely. The lack of face-to-face interaction does have its challenges, but many corporations believe the benefits outweigh the downsides.
Remote teams mean access to better talent
When a business is restricted to hiring only local talent, the number of qualified employees may not be high. A distributed team gives employers access to a larger talent pool, making it easier to hire the most qualified candidates.
Saves money on overhead costs
Managing an in-house team can be expensive. Larger buildings cost more to lease, there’s equipment to purchase, and utilities to cover. Remote workers are responsible for providing their electricity and many corporations require that they provide their computers.
Some corporations report a savings of 78 million dollars a year. This number does vary based on the size of the corporation.
Remote employees are more productive
Remote employees are often in charge of their own schedule, but rather than being less productive, they often complete more work per day than their in-house counterparts. Increased productivity means more completed work for less money.
The Downsides of Remote Teams
With any remote employee, there are security concerns as their workspace may not be completely private and data may accidentally be shared with the public. Furthermore, communication between the management team and the remote workers can suffer, as the managers can’t simply walk over to the employee’s desk. Additionally, when working in different time zones, responses may take longer.
What Does a Remote Team Mean for Asian Companies?
For corporations looking for native English speakers, finding those individuals in their country can be quite a challenge. Remotely-managed teams give employers the opportunity to recruit these highly-trained and highly-qualified individuals, regardless of where they live.
It’s estimated that over half of the global workforce will occupy remote positions by 2020 and steady increases in remote employment gives employers access to qualified talent close to home as well as in other countries.
A distributed team also means smaller carbon footprints for businesses and their employees. The reduction in commute time means that employees are responsible for fewer daily CO2 emissions. In crowded cities like Hong Kong and Mumbai, this can make a huge difference to the environment.
Distributed and remote teams are the wave of the future. Expand the talent pool, increase productivity, and improve workplace happiness by allowing employees to work from home.
Author: Jenny Holt is a freelance writer and mother of two. She loves nothing more than getting away from it and taking her pet Labrador Bruce for long walks, something she can do a lot more now she’s left the corporate world behind.