How to Improve Remote Team Efficiency?by Aakash Gupta Director
Telecommuters add value to the operational workflow of an organization helping it conduct a profitable business. Having said that, effective remote team efficiency remains a secret to many industries including the professional services organizations!
Today, only a few organizations manage to align their remote team on the tasks as well as keeping their morale high. There are many ways a project can suffer despite having a talented remote team, namely miscommunication, communication gaps, delays in the execution process, plan deviations, among others.
Apart from that, there are a few underlying problems that may affect the efficiency of the distributed teams namely- lack of motivation, low sense of responsibility, and misinterpretation of deliverables.
Surprisingly, remote workforce can easily be managed with higher team coordination and well-defined project goals.
Let’s take a look at some of the steps to improve the remote team’s efficiency drastically:-
1. Involve team members while preparing strategies
Managing remote teams is similar to connecting dots plotted far away on a piece of paper. To make sure your team members stay connected, you can prepare strategies which involve all stakeholders and decision-makers to avoid any discrepancies in the workflow.
Not being able to coordinate in-person makes it tough to ensure that the remote team is sticking to planned timelines. For one, they would require prompt updates on any changes and rectifications from the parent team. On the other hand, the team would need to report any changes in execution to the organization.
A good way to counter this is to prepare a checklist which clearly defines the milestones for the remote team members. Using a resource management tool can help track the activities of each of the employees on a real-time basis. A truly interactive goal-setting can help ensure optimum distribution of activities among resources. In addition, you can also plan a contingency plan for risks.
2. Practice healthy communication
The distributed teams often find it difficult to communicate over online mediums, such as instant messaging platforms, emails, or a collaboration tool. It may convey only the necessary information without understanding the motive or other minor details which may be important.
A good functioning team is where there is enough scope for personal growth along with improved professional prowess. It allows them to bond stronger and work faster. In fact, the teams can convey the right message every time because of the strong bonds and project understanding.
In addition to that, you can train the remote team on communication skills which could improve the remote team efficiency. Soft skills includes that a member should convey the challenges properly while seeking solutions, limit the communication process to a few minutes at a time, and most importantly manage conflicts wisely.
3. Manage meetings respecting the timezones
A remote workforce or a team working on a project from different time zones require regular real-time discussions. However, due to different working hours, it can be really challenging to plan and execute meetings.
Regular virtual meetings can help the team catch up on the overall project progress, including the project leaders. For people working in different timezones, it is imperative that you find a common timeframe for meetings.
Scheduling extra work hours to your employees for meetings can affect the team’s productivity and should be the last option for your organization. However, in unavoidable circumstances, try to compensate for meetings beyond working hours with flexible working hours or some special benefits.
4. Quantify the tasks performed
Maintaining a checklist and tracking the tasks completed can help reduce project overruns when remote teams are involved. An online tool where tasks are updated regularly can help resolve bottlenecks and save time and money in the long run.
In addition to reporting, ask for the remote employees to submit feedback on the challenges they faced and their suggestions. Performance insights will not only help the organization to improve the remote team’s efficiency but also help employees clarify doubts and sort out issues.
5. Hire the Best Talents Across the Globe
The first and foremost benefit of hiring a remote team is that you can have the most skillful resource at a cheaper cost. It is possible because the company wouldn’t have to provide extra allowances since the team is working at a native place(local).
Similarly, professional services organizations save the payroll cost by hiring resources at lower wages from developing countries. In that case, an organization in a developed country will instead of paying more to local resources, can hire remote employees from developing nations.
Forming a team of the most talented and ambitious remote employees will definitely boost morale and the learning capacity of individual team members. Having distributed team certainly will have challenges but the value they contribute to organization outlasts the challenges.
We would wonder about the possibilities for the time in future, would professional services organizations would invest more on distributed teams than the people working on site?
Also, you would have some experiences managing a remote team in your organization - let us know about the challenges you face in the comments section below!
Created on Nov 27th 2019 00:02. Viewed 407 times.