This is a partnered post.
Many a mom has discovered that working from home gives the perfect opportunity to ensure that they’re there for a young family while providing more cash for the family coffers. While many start out as a freelancer, you may see the opportunity to grow your own business and brand. While you might be able to handle it alone for a time, you may eventually come to the conclusion that you need a little help. Rather than setting up an office and hiring a team to fill it, however, could remote workers be the answer that you need?
Know the benefits
Once you have identified the roles you need to fill, it’s time to look at how you’re going to hire them. But what are the benefits of remote working? There are plenty of them. To start with, you don’t have to pay for the costs of their equipment (excluding any software licenses you need to share) nor for the office space that they need. What’s more, you can draw from a much broader pool of talent all across the country and even potentially overseas. The flexibility and convenience of remote working make it highly attractive, too, so your employees are a lot more likely to be engaged and motivated with the work since they’re not dragged down by a poor work environment or office politics.
Keep in touch
Communication is crucial if you want your team to be successful, and there’s no denying that remote working does erect a barrier when it comes to keeping those lines open. However, you can easily work around them with the right tools. Online conferencing software allows you to host face-to-face (or mic-to-mic) business meetings so that you can converse with them as naturally and easily as if they were just down the hall. Ensure that your team is using one instant messaging software consistently, so they can quickly message, share resources, and provide updates. If you’re using different apps to message different people, it’s easy to lose them between the gaps.
Make sure your goals are well communicated
It’s your responsibility to ensure that your team is given their marching orders. However, beyond their practical objectives, it’s also important to ensure that they are onboard with the overall objective they’re contributing to. This is especially true when it comes to group projects that require them to work autonomously. Messaging and project management software can be an excellent help in this regard. You can create different groups in one space, helping them share resources with only the most relevant team members, to keep everyone updated on their process, and to keep both individual and overall goals visible at all times. If a member of your remote working team ever gets lost, they can simply look at the app and be reminded of what they need to do next.
Promote feedback in both directions
One issue in remote working that you need to get past is that many have trouble providing honest, direct feedback if it’s not in a face-to-face meeting. You need to get over that so you can correct your workers as quickly as possible and help them learn from mistakes, rather than simply letting them fester. On the other hand, you also need to ensure that they know that their own feedback is welcome, even if it’s critical. They may highlight improvements to the remote working relationship you can incorporate or even make it become known if they have unique needs that need to be met, whether it’s a piece of software that could help them prefer much better in their job or a different work schedule.
Manage their time well
Schedule flexibility is one of the most alluring benefits of a remote working opportunity and being able to offer that can help you attract the best of the best, and help them work when they can be at their most productive and engaged. However, if you have twenty remote workers with different schedules, it can get hectic. It might be a good idea to highlight a couple hours of the day when everyone has to be available or to set limits on when they can’t work. Otherwise, a digital time clock can help you quickly manage all those schedules. You can track their hours, so you know not only when they’re available at a glance, but also so that payroll is automated and much more convenient.
Ensure they’re staying productive
A time clock can help you ensure that you know when they’re available, but how do you know that they’re actually working in that time? Measuring productivity is crucial in the world of remote working. Even if you would like to trust them, there is likely to be one or maybe even two that isn’t producing results. Using key performance indicators and having them produce daily reports on what they’ve accomplished can help you be certain that no-one is taking advantage of the flexibility offered. They have to be held accountable if you want to make sure you’re reaching your business goals.
Help them succeed
Remote working is relatively new, and even if you’re new to the idea yourself, it’s important that you help your team make the best of the arrangement. The benefits might be obvious to them, but the barriers can be something of a challenge. Research remote working tips that you can share with them on a regular basis to ensure that they are taking care of themselves and that they are happy, engaged, and productive in their own work environment. It shows that you take their own circumstances seriously, which frames you as a supportive, helpful employee. This can help them become even more motivated to give their all to their work, benefiting both sides of the relationship.
Remote working is growing fast across the world and, what’s more, it’s proving a success for all kinds of businesses. Hopefully, the tips above show you how to partner with remote workers to make a real success of your fledgling home business.