How to Build a Highly Effective Rock-Star Remote Team
A few years back, there seemed to be almost a “mystique” around working remotely. How could you do everything from home, including connect with your team, have meetings and, perhaps most importantly, keep yourself motivated when you’d rather be going to see a movie or checking out the latest sale at the mall.
But today, remote workplaces are a common occurrence, mostly due to the practice being way more cost-efficient than traditional business operations. On top of that, it allows for recruiting people from around the globe (meaning the talent pool is close to being endless). You can find a job in Berlin, Tokyo or just a few miles away in your own hometown. The option truly are exciting!
Whether you are looking to hire freelancers or full-time remote employees, the benefits are numerous. For one thing, taxes will be considerably lower for outsourcers. Secondly, remote businesses aren’t limited in terms of finding the right candidate in the right city.
Some engineering marketplaces, for example, have made a fortune solely by matching the right employee with the right candidates at target destinations. Think in terms of transportation costs, to get the bigger picture.
But now that you know you definitely want to hire remote employees, where do you find them? Well, the answer to that is pretty simple, too.
How to Select the Best Remote Workers
The good news is that online hubs where freelancers and remote contractors gather are numerous. Depending on the profession you are after, pick the best rated freelancers through the platform’s feedback system.
Common choices include Fiverr (for freelancers) and Upwork (for both freelancers and contractors). LinkedIn is also bustling with eager employees-to-be and is also a good choice in terms of recommendations and feedback.
Numerous businesses look for star-rating systems and positive feedback from prospective employees, but these are by no means the only two features to keep in mind. When selecting the right candidate, it is important to keep in mind their availability.
This especially holds true for freelancers, who are known to multitask and are not necessarily interested in long-term contracts or full-time working hours. If you have strict deadlines, make certain to check whether the candidates have a proven track record of finishing projects timely (and continuously, at that).
There are no general rules when it comes to personality traits, but reliability and professionalism are the usual two requirements, regardless of the target skill set. Many remote employees also work as entrepreneurs, in that they either run their own business locally, or have set a startup to better handle remote work. That means that, more than likely, they will be creative and innovative. Who doesn’t want an employee or a freelancer with those skills?
Keeping Your Team Organized
Funnily enough, managing online teams is usually easier than managing traditional office-based ones. The first reason lies in the fact that with more people going global and online, the number of apps to track deadlines and tasks is rapidly growing.
When it comes to communication, the situation gets even more interesting. Namely, both one-to-one interviews and virtual meeting places are easily addressed by a multitude of apps that are gaining popularity by the minute.
Some common choices include GoToMeeting, Zoom, WhatsApp, Skype, Line and Google Talk (see infographic below).
Asana and Slack are two of the most popular tools for task scheduling and tracking, as well as instant messaging (private and channels). Choosing a good desktop client is also preferred, due to advanced backup and scheduling options (as opposed to webmail).
The most important thing to keep in mind here is that remote teams work similarly to office-based teams. An online business may create a management system no less efficient than a regular one. Thus, if you run a large-scale business, you may wish to assign a manager for every team, and schedule monthly to bi-annual company updates for everyone to keep aligned.
Maintaining an Online Presence
Once you have your basic setup and the right team members in place, it’s important not to sit back and think, “Well, I’m good to go now.” Just as you may have found your remote workers online, having a stellar online presence is important, and will attract other freelancers and contract employees when the time comes to expand.
The first thing a reputable online business should think of if a mobile optimized website. Include testimonials and customer feedback to attract new clients, and update your website regularly.
Social media connectivity comes next. The more content gets shared and re-shared, the more people it will reach. Email marketing campaigns go without saying, with the most important aspect being to build a stable relationship with your clients. Of course, that’s where the perfect money-making newsletter also steps into the picture.
The rather burning question for novices in the field of remote business is how to pay remote employees. It is true that options are diverse, but many depend on the actual location of the employee. That, and the fact that online wallets international bank transfers may be expensive for both parties, calls for some recommendations.
Freelancers definitely have their preferences. Times have changed since PayPal was the only option, with numerous other payment systems being preferred nowadays (cheaper and more reliable to boot). One of those is Payoneer, which comes with an international Mastercard and allows for withdrawing funds in local currencies literally anywhere.
E-Wallets are also an option for employees in remote countries.
Working with a remote team can be straightforward, beneficial and even fun. Once you hold your first online meeting and see faces from all across the globe, you’ll realize just how much you can all learn from one another, both in business practices and in countless other ways. Now, get out there and find the ideal team members to skyrocket your business to success!