April 30, 2021

4 Practical Tips for Managing a Remote Team

Managing a remote team of employees will always come with challenges, but with the right tools, you can make it a success and save money in the process.

Remote teams have become very common in the past year as companies scramble to find new ways to make things work during the pandemic, and many employers are finding that it’s a unique and tenable solution to several problems. One of the major benefits of running a remote team is that it saves money; one of the drawbacks is that, as an employer, you aren’t able to physically check in and make sure everything is on track.

The good news is, there are a few ways around the remote roadblocks to make sure your team is well-versed in how to maintain professionalism and keep your business running smoothly, no matter where they are.

It’s also important to think about the hiring process as putting together the perfect team starts there.

1. Get a good sense of who employees  are and whether they will actually be a good fit in a remote team

Individuals often research potential employers before an interview. It’s important that the process goes both ways when you’re putting together a team for a specific job. Background checks are a good way to help employers get a sense of who they’re talking to (which you can easily do with tools like …. and ….). It’s essential, however, to understand the regulations surrounding a background check. According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you must inform the applicant about the check and that the results could impact their eligibility. Read up on the regulations in your state, particularly with regards to whether or not you’re allowed to perform a criminal background check before a job offer has been made.

2. Change the way you evaluate skill and culture fit 

When it comes to remote employees, you’ll want to think about the types of skills you want them to bring to the table - skills are much more important in a remote environment when personal interactions are limited. Company culture is always important, but in truth it’s trumped by productivity in a remote working environment. Along with doing background checks, focus specifically on finding individuals who can add something to your business and bring your vision to life. You may also want to consider bringing in an HR consultant to help you hire and communicate with your team.  You can find HR consulting services on job platforms like  Upwork — just make sure you check out their reviews, pricing, and how long it will take them to finish the job.

3. Over-communicate and use the right tools to keep track of work

Whether your employees are all working on the same task as a team or handling projects individually, it’s essential to keep communication open, organized, and consistent when they’re working remotely. Giving everyone the right tools to stay on track can make a huge difference when they’re not in the office together, so utilize platforms like Slack (where you can create individual or team channels to communicate with one another and even create a newsfeed that keeps everyone in the group informed), and Sortd to keep track of customer work across your team. You can create a team atmosphere for remote workers that helps everyone feel more comfortable with one another, fosters healthy working relationships and keeps everyone aligned with customer needs and expectations.

4. Change your performance evaluation criteria to keep the morale up

For many employers, one of the most difficult aspects of running a remote team is making sure everyone is staying on task and getting their work done. Unfortunately, this can lead to some issues when employees feel that management doesn’t trust them - so keep the big picture in mind rather than focusing on the details. As long as the work is consistently getting done on time, it’s best not to worry too much about their process. Keep in mind, however, that those who aren’t showing results may not be cut out for remote work. It’s best to have a one-on-one with them quickly to make sure they understand their responsibilities and make sure they have the necessary skills to work from home as one under-performing member can drag down the entire team.

Managing a remote team of employees will always come with challenges, but with the right tools, you can make it a success and save money in the process. Keep communication open, be clear about your expectations, and champion a team atmosphere in order to keep things running smoothly.

Written by
Tina Martin