In this highly advanced fast-paced digital world of business, remote working is not an unfamiliar concept and a lot of businesses are now facing burgeoning challenges when it comes to remote workforce management.
The cutting edge development offers some key benefits, however monitoring and supervising the activities of remote workers require organisations to be tech-savvy and yes, mobile friendly as well.
A highly competitive business environment requires more talented people to join the team and it is a great idea to hire people in other cities, states and countries to join the company to explore remote working opportunities.
Out of sight doesn’t always mean out of mind, as many remote workers are capable of achieving great performance and productivity, based right at their home workstations and clock in hours as regular staffers in the head office of their company.
Now addition of remote employees to the current workforce could present unique set of challenges to the company’s management fundamentals.
The mismanaged strategy might soon end up in ineffective performance at work, enormous amount of delayed tasks and unaccomplished duties that ultimately result in company’s loss, in terms of timelines and delayed targets.
However, a well-managed remote workforce can help improve employee morale, productivity, and facilitate team collaboration across geographies to bolster company’s advancement prospects.
Use of technology is a must for team leaders, and senior supervisors, HR managers to monitor functioning of the remote workers and ensure their productivity and performance levels are at their optimum.
Here are some tips to manage remote workers you can adopt:
Outline the Expectations Clearly at Onset
Setting clear goals and benchmarks will help the telecommuters to stay in constant contact with the team, and report about daily tasks accomplished to achieve business objectives.
Special emphasis should be laid on maintaining clear lines of communication through direct channels of authority to supervise their workings and resolve any doubts timely. The company can keep a check on remote workers through phone, emails, texts or even messengers.
More Video Calls and Conferencing
Most of the effective communication is nonverbal. You might like to make a phone call or engage into intensive chatting with remote worker, but you cannot always understand the real facial expressions, moods and gestures of your teleworkers.
Sometimes it is important to know how your employees react towards a sudden change and ad hoc tasks, or wondering about their moods during the day.
With so many free and inexpensive solutions for video chat available, there is no reason not to switch on the video whenever you can. The non-verbal clues on video are your opportunity to screen and fix the problems of your remote employees.
Leverage the Technology Tools
Teleconference, online-meeting and file-sharing services effectively foster better collaboration with the remote team. It is important to ensure that your remote employees have full access to the right communication tools and are able to operate them with no inconveniences during the work hours, such as to support their working processes.
Align Employees’ Career Development Goals with Business Vision
Instead of assuming teleworkers to be mercenaries, it is important for employers to offer equal employment and career development opportunities for remote workers sans gender bias and racial discrimination.
Remote employees do have personal career progression goals and aspirations. A clear career pathway directed by the employer or manager, will help them progress in the right direction, achieve productivity levels and stay off the confusion bit.
Meet your Remote Workers Periodically
To meet remote workers staying in other cities and countries can be quite pricey for your business. However, be ensured this investment to travel and meet your remote working staff will fetch higher returns for business in future, as the employees would feel more appreciated and eager to discuss bigger work-related issues, innovative ideas, share cultures and much more, which cannot be possible through video-conferencing discussions.
Remote workers can be beneficial and great contributors to an organisation’s success and strengthen the employer brand value, provided they are managed carefully with tact and sometimes diplomacy.
Too much of careful monitoring of remote staffers’ activities will not allow room for their growth and this could lead to attrition in future. Both employers and the remote workers should be working in tandem and harmoniously to yield higher levels of productivity, achieve performance excellence and seek business growth.
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