Among businesses and professionals today, remote work is becoming more common as many businesses have successfully adopted 100% remote teams. The current COVID-19 pandemic has not just shone more light on this but has also encouraged business owners to include it in their business continuity plans.
Remote work benefits both employers and employees. For employees, research shows that more millennials desire the flexibility of remote work and it reduces stress amongst workers. So, when it comes to the employers, a well organized remote team improves productivity at a lesser cost.
It equally exposes them to limitless talents as opposed to depending on talents within a given geographical area. How then do you tap into this limitless market to build a successful international remote team? Here are a few tips and things to enable you to navigate the logistics that come with managing employees located in different countries.
1. Hire the Right Talent:
There is a common saying that a business’s greatest asset is its people and this is true for many reasons. The most important ingredient when setting up your remote team is the team members. You must first acknowledge that not everyone can work remotely so when hiring, aim for doers, people who default to action. They are capable of getting the work done no matter where they are, even if it is on an island with the barest supervision.
You should also aim to hire people who are trustworthy as well as those who can communicate clearly. More specifically, employing people who have good written communication skills safeguards you against losing important details and information when sending emails. Depending on your preference, you can take advantage of LinkedIn or other freelance platforms to source for these talents.
2. Establish a Payment Procedure
When hiring international remote workers, it is important to take note of the payment procedure. A few things to consider include the minimum wage and laws guiding wages and salaries in those countries, a payment plan (that is, will you be paying per hour, per job, or on a salary basis). Also of importance is the currency – you can opt for a standard currency like dollars or their country’s local currency) and finally, the payment platform.
With several platforms out there offering ways to send money overseas, it is best to opt for one with low transaction fees and speedy delivery so you do not fall short on your employees’ payment dates.
3. Set Up Organisational Tools and Software
Managing a remote team comes with its set of challenges and part of it is finding the right tools for your team. In an ideal office environment, it’s easy to check in on your team members to be sure everyone is doing the right thing. But in the case of remote work, you need efficient tools for productivity monitoring.
The right tools include equipment and software that improve the productivity of your remote team members. Important items to note under this category are; a computer, reliable and secure internet, remote desktop software that allows you to connect to computers in other locations, team chat apps, screen sharing software, screen recording tools, and video conferencing apps, online office suites, amongst others. You do not have to incorporate all the tools and software listed but simply mix and match the ones that go well with the type of remote team you have created.
4. Build a Work Culture
An employees time is valuable. Do not ignore the need to build and sustain a work culture even when working remotely. It can be especially difficult to do this when managing remote workers because of the distance but regardless of the culture, you choose to align with, ensure that it is inclusive. Dedicate measures to bake this culture into everything you and your team members do.
Further ensure that remote members are aware of your company’s core values, vision, and mission from the very beginning, which will be at the point of recruitment. It is easier to maintain a healthy company and work culture when you recruit team members who align with the values of your company.
5. Mind Cultural Differences and Time Zones
When working with people who live in different parts of the world, it is important to remember that they will most likely exist in a different time zone. Even more, their culture is probably quite different from yours. Be flexible by making provision for shifts on special holidays.
Sensitivity and flexibility are important when managing an international remote team as it helps pave the way for maximum productivity and cooperation.