There’s no stopping the ‘virtualisation’ of our workplaces. The number of remote employees increases every year, as more businesses plug into the benefits of mobile routines. While the advantages are numerous, the problem is that ‘going virtual’ can often seem like a simple switch. In reality, the change involves a complete restructuring of existing business models.
It is not to say that it cannot be an enjoyable, satisfying transition. Many small businesses have moved from physical offices to virtual ones, and their only regret is not doing it sooner. Success, however, depends on more than just a knowledge of the buzzwords. You’ve got to work hard to find new forms of motivation and inspiration for remote employees.
This guide to setting up your first virtual team will give you some ideas, tips, and advice.
Find a Great Provider
Not all remote teams work with an official virtual office, but it is recommended. Head over to www.servcorp.com.ph/en/virtual-offices to explore some of the facilities located in downtown Manila. They are designed to be used as offsite support systems for remote workers.
The obvious benefit of this is that, even though you’re not operating from a centralised workspace, you’ve got quick access to tech, admin, accounting, and HR assistance anyway. These vendors also offer formal mailbox and phone line services for added brand integrity.
Don’t Abandon ‘Face to Face’
Most remote teams do meet, in person, at least once a year. It is a good way for managers to assure employees of their importance and make sure that everybody is familiar. In some cases, this won’t be possible. You may have remote workers who live in a different country.
If you can, it’s worth helping them travel over to an annual meeting. However, an online encounter can be substituted if it’s the only viable option. Just make an effort to reach out and bring everybody together at some point, so that they really do feel like part of a working group.
Make the Rules Very Clear
Rules and guidelines are more important than ever when you’re working without an onsite structure. You can’t supervise, so you’ve got to set clear boundaries for how and when work is submitted. This is the key to virtual success. Don’t worry about the method. Just get results.
Remote employees must submit assignments when instructed. They must make themselves available for online meetings when requested. There must be appropriate penalties for failing to adhere to the workplace code. Virtual policies hold no less weight than traditional ones.
Provide Software Training
You can’t expect your employees to stay connected and keep you informed without full knowledge of the best ways to do it. Even if some members of the group are proficient with the software choices, involve everybody in online training sessions.
Focus on conferencing, streaming, doc sharing, spreadsheet, and scheduling tools. It’s also a good idea to hold seminars on cyber security. Make sure all employees are practising safe networking and surfing while handling company data.
Why Virtual Office Solutions Are the Future
There are challenges associated with setting up a virtual office, particularly if you’re an established company trying to transition to remote routines. Generally, new businesses find it easier to adapt, because they haven’t already developed bad productivity habits.
Regardless of how long you have been operating, this is an entirely new way to work, and it will take time to grow comfortable. The secret to success is having the support of a great virtual provider, and a strong, reliable team made up of independent personalities.