Remote Working - Numbers
The global economy saw a massive setback in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Businesses had to implement a partial or complete remote model to survive the crisis without hiccups.
Companies gradually realized that a strong remote team could improve productivity and profitability. America expects to have 36.2 million employees working remotely by 2025. And, it is not surprising that 74 percent are willing to quit their office jobs for remote positions.
Why Remote Work?
We at RaftLabs are a full-time remote team. Let us help you understand some strategies and tips that have worked for us and can work for you too.
These tips can guide you to manage remote teams easily and promote a positive environment:
1. Welcoming New Employees
Ensure team members know the new joiners before the call. Set up the welcome call for every new employee. Make them feel comfortable by having a few team members on that call. Let team members introduce themselves first to break the ice. Make it personal by talking about individual aspects on the first call. Let them have a sense of belonging.
2. Collaboration Tools For A Remote Team
Encourage your virtual workforce to use different project management tools for better communication.
Communication (Text/Audio/Video) Tools:
Texting is an effective method for better team communication. Urge your remote staff to create concise messages. The receiver must understand the issue or assignment quickly.
Let us find some of the best tools for texting in the virtual workplace:
Virtual meeting platforms promote team participation. Use these video or audio communication tools for remote teams:
Task Tracking Tools:
The task tracker tools keep everyone on the right track. Let your remote team manage their tasks more effectively with the below tools:
3. Define A Proper Work Procedure
Guide your team by setting clear task guidelines. List down step-by-step instructions showing how to proceed with a task. It will help to complete the whole project by meeting the SLA target.
Explain the project's goal by designing a project brief before assigning the tasks. Include the following details in the information:
- Goal of the project
- Project timeline
- Final plan
Dividing and assigning tasks to each member helps everyone work hand-in-hand. Such small tips will help your company achieve more significant milestones in the future.
4. Team Communication Is Crucial
Communication can make or break teams. A recurring crisp communication process works for any remote working team. Constant interaction with subordinates helps them feel cared for and supported by the management. The team members will feel free to express their shortcomings or issues at work. This culture promotes healthy work relationships and a positive environment.
5. Ensure Transparency
Encourage group messaging so all members are on the same page. Every team member should be able to access almost every file or document of the project equally.
Promote clear communication to ensure overall transparency in the workspace. It allows your team leaders to lead you on the right path. Leave no room for assumptions or doubts.
6. Power Of Written Communication
Are there introverts at your workplace?
The members of a team will have different personalities. Introverts prefer text messages to video conferencing. Texting saves time and can be less stressful. Well-crafted text messages are more powerful than you think.
Convey the relevance of writing a clear and focused message to employees.
Noting down meeting minutes record essential details discussed in a meeting. Likewise, employees can make brief notes summarizing their daily work.
7. Working Around Time Zones
If the team members connect from different countries, choose an overlapping time to work together. If you work from India and your colleague is joining from the UK, the best time to schedule meetings is between 1:30 PM - 6:00 PM (IST). To pick the suitable timings, you can use the below tools:
If there is no overlapping time to work together, create a template where you can note down your status. It helps the other to start the work from where you left off. You can include the following points in the template:
1. Status of work you did yesterday.
2. Work planned by you today.
3. Are there any blockers?
It helps in effective team communication where the work schedules don’t match. Still, the team must have a system to hold emergency meetings to address any problematic issues.
8. Virtual Water Cooler Meetings
Who doesn't love having a chance to leave all the work stress and have fun?
Everyone loves to relax after a hectic work schedule. Organize weekly "water cooler" meetings. Employees can enjoy casual, light-hearted conversations during these meetings. Let them take part in fun online activities or games. It strengthens team bonding.
9. Employee Recognition
Appreciation from the employer motivates the staff to give better results. Try acknowledging their dedication. You will find that they will be glad to work at their full potential.
Provide bonuses and promotions on time to value an employee's effort. A happy employee is a productive employee.
10. Maintain Healthy Work-Life Boundaries
Remote workers tend to work longer hours. It can affect their work-life balance. Encourage your remote staff to have a boundary between work and personal life. Make them aware of self-care. The mental health of employees is crucial. A peaceful workspace builds a positive remote work environment.
Top 5 Successful Remote Companies
The below companies have proved that remote work routines can create a positive company culture:
Industry: Publishing & E-commerce
Industry: Software Development
Industry: Social Media Management
On A Final Note
A complete remote office setup can appear challenging and intimidating for companies.
As described in the article, a remote office setup that implements the proper strategy works well. Developing a healthy company culture is essential. Great tech companies like Apple, Red Hat, etc., are switching to hybrid and fully remote work models.
RaftLabs is a software company in Ireland that operates with an entirely remote team. We have successfully built a joyful remote team. Our employees enjoy a healthy work-life balance.
In-person interactions are an absolute must. Remote working can't replace the trust and esteem that in-person interactions provide. Hence, we as a team meet up with each other at a yearly offsite. It's the time of the year when we are all under one roof. That's how we know each other's personal aspects. We also align ourselves with the company's goal and mission.
How to successfully build a robust remote team culture?
By promoting healthy working relationships, ensuring proper communication, bringing transparency to the tasks, and having some fun meetings, companies can successfully build a solid remote culture with their workforce connecting from different parts of the globe.
How is remote work culture beneficial for the employees?
A company that adopts a remote-first culture will have higher retention rates and improved productivity as the employees can enjoy a proper work-life balance in such environments.
How to strengthen the bond between employees in a remote work environment?
Welcoming new employees in front of the whole team, conducting online water cooler meetings, and setting up offline yearly meetups helps the team members build camaraderie and foster healthy relationships in the remote work environment.
How to manage a remote team smoothly?
Using online collaboration tools can help ensure better communication among team members and allow the project managers to remain updated with the status of the tasks in a virtual environment.
Riya is a creative content writer at RaftLabs. She is a B.Tech graduate who enjoys writing articles that pique her audience's interest. She enjoys learning and writing about new subject areas that broaden her knowledge base. She has so far written articles on IT and finance. She has experience in writing articles for the B2B and B2C sectors.