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How to Manage Remote Staff: Top Practices

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The popularity of remote work has been rising steadily. Even as the pandemic is starting to subside, many employers are thinking about keeping the remote structure. It may be surprising, but the majority of employees show higher productivity levels when working from home. Organizations are also recognizing the value of hiring candidates from foreign talent pools. Services like Remote enable businesses to hire, onboard and manage candidates regardless of where they are based. 

To make sure your entire team contributes to the company’s success even when it’s not present physically, you need to take a smart approach to management.

Your staff is likely to be thrown off-balance by remote work nuances. Even if they have been working from home several days a week, these employees still need to readjust to remote practices.

Let’s take a closer look at several efficient ways to manage your remote workforce.  

1. Equip and Enable

To maintain high levels of productivity while retaining control over your staff, you need to enable your teams. This means you have to provide the right hardware, software, and equipment to make work easy from home.

Many employers fail to understand why their teams aren’t responding to requests timely or showing poor productivity levels. The main reason is the lack of enablement. Give your employees the right tools to work remotely. These same tools will allow you to control the work process.

The examples of great programs for task management and teamwork are Asana and Trello.  They are just as useful in a remote environment as in the office.

2. Provide Guidelines

According to dedicated .NET developers staffing company, Allshore, the biggest problem managers face with their team is a lack of understanding. When employees are working remotely, the absence of regular control makes it easy to misunderstand guidelines and boundaries.

That’s why it’s important to work out a system that sets these boundaries and guidelines, helping employees understand the structure of remote operation. Each worker must know their direct responsibilities, reporting structure, and the person to report to.

3. Focus on the Wellbeing

To keep productivity high and levels of distress low, you need to focus on the well-being of your employees. During the pandemic, managing the anxiety became tougher than usual. With people losing their jobs, many employees are under constant stress.

If you want to control your top talent without upping the turnover rate, you need to focus on its well-being. This won’t just help you manage your team but make your company appealing to other talents.

Examples of wellbeing tactics include:

  •         Recognize employee achievements whenever possible
  •         Arrange fitness challenges
  •         Rethink benefits packages
  •         Focus on personal development
  •         Offer unlimited vacations
  •         Incentivize preventive care (like COVID-19 and flu shots)

When your employees feel safe and cared for, their productivity rises. This can help you maintain control over your team.

4. Be Available

A lack of in-person communication makes it hard for employees to solve some of the most common problems. Something they could have asked by walking over to your desk now requires a videoconference call or an email.

To maintain control over the remote staff and make their work easier, you must be available. All employees should have a clear understanding of how to reach their managers and get answers to immediate questions.

5. Track Progress

Tracking progress in a remote environment is somewhat different. You may need to check in with employees more often. However, micromanagement is out of the question. To keep productivity high, it’s important to set up a straightforward progress tracking system.

Remember, just because you don’t see how your employees are working, it doesn’t mean they aren’t. With the right system in place, you can evaluate progress without raising micromanagement issues.

6. Listen Closely

Establishing straightforward communication is only one part of the control system. You need to listen to what employees have to say.

Many of them have a better understanding of what your team needs for high productivity than you do. Make sure you act upon their ideas to show the importance of their opinions.

The Takeaway

Controlling your remote team may seem like a tough task. However, a lack of in-person interactions doesn’t make management impossible. It’s up to you to take full advantage of the available tools and support your team continuously.

With time, the remote work control will become as easy as in-office control. Meanwhile, productivity levels are bound to be higher.