The majority of companies are afraid of using outstaffing because they believe it is a difficult way to grow their team and achieve more results within a shorter time frame. This is not true and this is mostly based on their experience of hiring outsourcing companies. With the right strategy, outstaffing can enable any company to grow their team without any administrative requirements, work with top-tier developers that are cheaper to hire, and accelerate their entire development. Unlike outsourcing, outstaffing also gives you a better control of your new hires and enables them to easily integrate within your existing team. What is more, companies do not have to invest large resources in order to use outstaffing as a growth and development strategy – different outstaffing agencies on the market, such as SHORE teams, will help you identify the right partners and support you through the entire cycle. Here are five proven ways to efficiently manage a remote team with outstaffing:
1. Communication is the key to understanding
This is one strategy that we actively preach to companies using outstaffing services. Communication is the key to all relationships and the most efficient method to successfully manage a remote team. It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about personal or professional relationships – no understanding can exist without effective communication. You need to actively discuss all the ideas, problems and updates with your team. This will help you avoid potential issues, each member of the team will be able to express their opinion and concerns, and you will be able to accelerate your development with less pivoting risks. Creating an efficient communication strategy is the first thing that you need to do once you have remote team members on board. You need to involve both your in-house employees and the remote team members to gain insight into the ways they best communicate. Based on all the inputs, you can easily select and structure the most common and efficient communication channels and use them. By listening to your team and taking their experience into consideration, you will also create an additional trust layer and make your new and remote team members feel bonded and appreciated. In the end, this results with a thriving team-work. Babe Ruth, a famous American professional baseball player said, “The way a team plays as a whole determines its success. You may have the greatest bunch of individual stars in the world, but if they don’t play together, the club won’t be worth a dime.” Your communication goal should be to set clear expectations, treat everyone equally, and incentivize teamwork.
2. The right management means boosted productivity
Tasks can often be repetitive and many of responsibilities can be stressful for your team members. Hence, the solution is to break down each planned delivery into micro-tasks and incentivize daily communication around them. Otherwise, you’re managing your business ineffectively. As a team leader, you should communicate with your team about their working habits and select the right management tool that will give you insight into progress and responsibilities. While using such a tool, both your in-house and remote team will have access to project overviews, making them less likely to miss deadlines or misunderstand daily goals. It will make it easier for everyone to monitor milestones that you are trying to achieve and integrate other tools which can simplify the process of sharing and reporting within the team. Setting daily, weekly, and monthly goals is crucial to the success of any company. By exposing your team to these aspirations through management tools, you will make sure that everyone understands your vision and works hard to help you cross any development obstacles. This is why you need to create procedures, set rules and share them with everyone on the team.
Advice: Another tool that you can use is a time-tracking tool. This is a proven way to keep your employees on track, review their performance, and increase team productivity. Another benefit of using similar applications is that every employee feels like they are in charge of their time.
3. Hiring people that are smarter than you will enable you to grow
The most successful leaders are focused on hiring people who are much smarter than they are. These people will push everyone with diverse thinking, add value to your team, and allow other members of the team to learn from them. Most importantly, these people need less help executing complex tasks. Additionally, your business will grow faster if you have smart, skilled people on board. Steve Jobs once said, “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” Smart people can improve aspects of your business that you might not have even seen as needing improvement. When problems arise that might have otherwise necessitated the hiring of a consultant or an additional freelancer, you’ll find you already have someone on your team who can solve them. But, if you hire people who are not well-experienced, you will personally have to deal with many management and other issues.
Advice: You should also engage with your team through reading materials. Perhaps, everyone can suggest a new book each month, everyone can vote and select the winner, and you can all discuss its content at the end of each month. Also, you should motivate everyone to sign up for free industry updates such as Google Trends related to your company. This way everyone on your team can track your competitors and have an overview of the industry. This will boost their thinking and brainstorming abilities and allow you to use the available information to make the necessary changes and stay ahead of your competitors.
4. Conducting regular one-on-one meetings will result in fewer changes
Unlike outsourcing, private conversation with remote team members is always available. They are managed as the extension of your in-house team. You are probably thinking that this strategy revolves around communication (again), but meetings are much more than expressing yourself – they are a way for people to understand each other and settle any differences which may have arisen between them or other team members. Conducting regular one-on-one meetings with new members of your team via platforms like Skype will help you gain insight into their qualities so you can more efficiently structure their focus. Moreover, it will allow you to establish a great company culture resulting in fewer disputes between the members of your team. Besides, many people do not feel comfortable expressing their worries in team meetings. By having a one-on-one structure in place, everyone will feel more comfortable being part of your company and they will be able to efficiently voice their thoughts. Mark Sanborn, a well-known author, professional speaker, and entrepreneur said, “In teamwork, silence isn’t golden, it’s deadly”.
According to the Harvard Business Review, 87% of remote workers feel more connected to their employers thanks to video conferencing tools.
5. Respecting time zones will make you a global company
It is very easy to forget that some people you work with may be in different time zone. This can cause issues on many different management and communication levels, ranging from missed deadlines to misunderstanding. This will also make many employees feel disrespected. Whenever scheduling tasks or meetings, you need to take into consideration different time zones and be transparent about responsibilities. Furthermore, you need to make sure that each member of the team is aware of existing time differences. You can achieve this through certain labels within the management and communication tools. You can also incentivize personal communication at the beginning of each meeting. People can share stories from their local country, you can discuss things such as their local startup scene, and make your team feel valued every day.
As a manager and leader, you need to lead by example. SHORE teams is working with a large of companies, helping them identify the right near-shore and off-shore partners and achieve their development goals. Therefore, we understand the importance of good management and leadership. The future of the labor industry is moving in the remote direction and companies need to adapt to these new trends as soon as possible. A survey from ConnectSolutions states that 30% of remote workers get more accomplished in less time and 82% say they experience lower levels of stress. Incredible, right? As a company, often you might need to build a new product, expand your existing team, or boost your development. Outsourcing is very limited and risky and hiring new employees is time-consuming and expensive. In these and many other situations, you can use outstaffing to solve your problems. Still, managing these remote teams is a challenging process. You need to deal with organizing a great management structure, monitoring team members’ activities, and keeping track of your progress. However, if you follow these aforementioned outstaffing management guidelines, you will be able to do it without any stress. When everything is taken into consideration, outstaffing is the most efficient hiring structure enabling companies to have a group of affordable, hard-working and productive employees at their disposal. A group of people that will help them turn their ideas into a profitable reality. As entrepreneurs, we are obliged to learn from such structures. I will end this article with one of my favorite quotes by Michael Jordan, “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships