The availability of permanent remote work positions is predicted to grow by as much as 25% in 2022. That shows the amount of potential that remote work has. The increase in positions is proof that companies are waking up to its benefits. As the CEO of Tomedes Translation Services, I have experienced forming, leading, and growing a global team. In this article, I will be sharing the insights I have gained through my experience in encouraging remote employee engagement.
Advantages of a remote team
But why switch to having a remote workforce? For many companies, the reason for switching to a remote workforce is financial – it removes many of the overhead operating costs. Maintaining an office, for example, can be very costly because it comes along with numerous additional costs.
It’s estimated that a company can save as much as $11,000 per employee who works remotely 50% of their time. For a small business, that $11,000 can spell a great deal, but for a large company with hundreds or thousands of employees, that can translate to millions of dollars in savings which can be used for other purposes.
On top of the financial benefits of going remote, there are other reasons why working with a remote team is a boon. And some of these benefits are pretty surprising actually, and go beyond employee engagement.
For example, studies suggest that remote workers are more productive. Who says so? The workers themselves! Around 61% of workers say that their productivity increased because of working remotely. For most companies, the transition to remote work over the last two years was sudden, without planning and coordination. Still, after operating with a primarily remote workforce, around 68 % of hiring managers say that things have become smoother and more organized.
It shouldn’t be surprising why remote workers are way more productive. They don’t face commutes; they have fewer distractions at home if they have their own home office. Remote workers can also take more breaks. All of that can help fuel the productivity of employees. This is something that I have learned early in running my translation services firm. We are an early adopter of the remote work setup. Our main office is in Israel, but we started hiring remote workers in the Philippines. We saw the potential of having a remote team, and we soon saw that we were right to try it out. The performance of our remote workers exceeded our expectations, which led us to the decision that we should hire more.
There’s no mystery as to why employees are happier working from home. In most cases, it allows them to have a better life balance. Employees also reported experiencing greater satisfaction from having a remote work setup.
But in my opinion, the biggest advantage offered by hiring a remote team is the widening of the talent pool. There are no geographic limitations when you are hiring a remote team. A typical company would be limited to hiring people within the area and the surrounding cities where it is based.
how to lead and grow remote teams
Here are some insights that I can share on leading and growing remote teams globally.
Hire the right team members
This is true even in a traditional work setting. You need to hire the right person, not just someone qualified for the job but someone who can adjust to the remote work setting. The right remote employee has the equipment, office, and internet connection required for the job. I’ve learned that a qualified person for a job in a traditional sense is not necessarily going to become a performer in a remote setup.
Have the Support Ready for a Diverse Team
When you decide to hire a diverse remote team, you need to make sure that you provide structural support for them. For starters, you need to make sure your HR department is staffed with people who can help your remote workers. Ideally, the HR department should have team members who can speak the language of the prospective team members. That way, they can communicate their problems effectively.
Translate your company documents
Because our company provides professional translation services, this is easier for us. But other companies that are seeking to build a remote international team need translation services too. Their company documents must be translated to the language that will be better understood by the remote workers.
It’s important that you work with a professional translation services provider when you want your company documents translated because you need them to be adapted to the local culture of your remote employees. Still, at the same time, you want to retain your company voice because you want your employees to be part of that.
Onboard them properly
Once you have hired your remote worker, you need to onboard them properly. Others might not realize that a lot depends on the kind of onboarding that remote workers get. Onboarding is a great way to introduce a company to an employee. It’s a way to welcome a new person and make them feel welcome.
Creating the right company culture
This is something that we did in Tomedes. As a translation services provider, we created a culture that reflects the industry and the kind of service we provide our clients. We made sure that all of our employees, regardless of where they are located, learn about the company culture. For other companies, that means working with a translation services provider so that the company culture comes across the right way regardless of the language used.
and there you have it…
These are the things that we have done when building up our remote team at Tomedes. There’s no guarantee that these steps will give you the exact same employee engagement results and remote team success as it did for us, but it should definitely put you on the right track. With everyone moving in the direction of remote teams, you cannot afford to be left behind.
Author: Ofer Tirosh – CEO, Tomedes
Photo credit: Mika Baumeister on Unsplash