Remote work, once a status symbol and perk for the lucky few, has grown in popularity, especially in the last decade. In fact, remote work has risen by 400% in the past decade! A major contribution here is technological advancement. The magnificent shift is further encouraged by the benefits the remote model presents to employees.
What’s more, the lauded benefits of remote work go both ways. Employers also stand to reap enormous benefits from remote work with careful planning and skilled management. For starters, there are reduced costs, optimal efficiency of business tasks, and the chance to hire from a larger talent pool. The key to reaping these benefits is to manage your outsourced workforce efficiently. Let’s delve deeper into how you can monitor them:
Practical Ways to Manage Outsourced Employees
Managing outsourced employees is pretty different from leading an in-house team. That’s why you must follow the tips given below.
1) Set Realistic Expectations
Setting expectations shows intentionality. And that is a driver for growth and success in organizations.
As you already know, long-term team members and new hires are set on a path to success when there are clear expectations. The case is no different for outsourced employees. Your outsourced team ought to know what you expect of them to align with the mission and vision of your organization.
Set expectations early on in your interactions with your outsourced team. That way, they will know your standards from the get-go. Aiming too high can foster disappointment and low morale with your outsourced employees. Expectations for your outsourced employees need to be attainable and realistic.
The SMART goal framework is an excellent place to start when your organization lays down its objectives and expectations. Another crucial element is conducting regular reviews to assess employee performance. That helps you know what aspects need tweaking to reap maximum benefits from outsourcing employees. With every assessment and performance review, ensure that you give meaningful feedback so that your team can learn and do better. Also, continue to encourage your team to crash their goals.
2) Learn About Employee Skills
Employees are the backbone of any organization. An organization will have an incredible competitive edge if its employees have the critical skills required for their responsibilities.
However, the reality of the ever-dynamic technologies and workplace makes it hard for employers to know what trending skills their team may lack. Learning about employee skills, especially when working with outsourced employees, helps businesses understand strengths and weaknesses. That way, they know who to rely on for what.
Employee skill assessment helps companies gauge the capabilities and readiness of their outsourced team. It provides a much-needed inventory of the skills represented among the outsourced employees, spot gaps, and use the information gathered to curate training and growth opportunities.
3) Provide the Best Remote Training Tools
Employee training and development is an instrumental contributor to growth. Training your team results in better employee retention, employee satisfaction, boosted productivity, and ultimately, better Return on Investment. Training is also a necessary element when managing outsourced employees.
The outsourced team members may have sufficient knowledge and skills in their field of expertise but may be ill-equipped with unique aspects and procedures of your business. It may not be possible to round up all your outsourced employees in a conference room for training. And that is where remote training tools enter the scene and save the day.
A tool like Remote To PC that provides remote support and effective user management can come in handy when doing remote training. It is also vital to track the results of remote training, depending on your organizational needs. Identify metrics you can use to gauge the efficiency of your remote training tools. Also, scalable training systems will allow you to expand your outsourced team seamlessly when your business evolves.
4) Encourage Seamless Communication
Business success is only possible when there is seamless communication among all the members and departments. Communication is all the more crucial when working with outsourced employees since team members could be scattered all over the world. Eliminating communication roadblocks such as biased persuading, directing, or criticizing to allow for seamless communication is essential for growing mutual trust which is at the core of business success. Have regular meetings so that nothing falls through the cracks.
Fortunately, tools like Zoom, Google Meet, and Skype remove the need to meet in person, making it easier to manage outsourced employees.
Nevertheless, when working with outsourced employees, there is a need for standard communication policies and protocols to prevent inconveniences that could stem from the lack of physical proximity.
You should agree on the communication channels to use with your outsourced employees and be sure to have stipulated working hours to avoid eating into your employees’ personal time. Regular and effective communication- even when members are miles from each other, is instrumental in achieving an equilibrium that contributes to an effective employee outsourcing ecosystem.
5) Enhance your security
Security is a matter of grave concern in today’s digital world. Ensuring security when employees work within the confines of an office is easier. Businesses can get away with a comprehensive cybersecurity model when all the data is on one site.
Remote work and managing outsourced employees call for better paradigms and cybersecurity strategies. Cybersecurity protocols that internal and outsourced employees can use are necessary for keeping cyber-attacks at bay.
The specific cybersecurity protocols will differ depending on a business’s structure and unique needs. That said, some policies will work for almost any business, like training employees on best password policies, sharing files through secure systems, endpoint encryption or routers, and installing antivirus software.
Tools like Remote To PC also come in handy in enhancing cybersecurity for businesses learning how to manage outsourced employees. Remote To PC software has features like two-factor authentication and web login that boost security when remote employees log in to the company network.
6) Prioritize Team Building
Team building has numerous benefits that are essential to business success. Team building is not just for employees that work from a fixed location. It is equally, if not more, worth investing in when working with outsourced employees. See, remote team members can often feel lonely, disconnected, and unengaged with each other.
Team building events and activities make them feel like part of a team and offer a platform for engagement and dialogue. They keep the staff motivated and enhance morale and productivity.
Also, remote employees may find it hard to maintain a proper work-life balance. And that eats into their productivity and performance. Team building allows employees to get off work and enjoy other social activities. That way, employees can live to their optimal potential.
7) Monitor Employee Work
When working with outsourced employees, you need a way to monitor their work to ensure optimal productivity. Employee productivity tracking tools come in handy in recording how your outsourced employees spend the time allocated for work. Simply put, you can keep a watch on employees’ work throughout the day.
Well, a tool like Remote PC will allow you to track your employees using its alert, management, and built-in monitoring features.
Another approach would be to employ self-reporting policies. This model will require employees to send emails and reports to their supervisors to explain the projects they have been tackling throughout the day. This method allows for a degree of subjective analysis, making employees feel like they have some autonomy. The downside is that some employees could misrepresent their workloads.
8) Get Feedback
You will not know how effectively you are managing your outsourced employees if you do not have a way to get feedback. Provide feedback channels for your outsourced employees to air their experiences working with your company. Let them offer insights into how they think the arrangement can work better for mutual benefit. Your in-house employees could also give their two cents on the outsourcing model and give pointers for improvement.
Managing outsourced employees is essential in ensuring your work processes operate like a well-oiled machine. Onboarding outsourced employees without a proper structure of how best to oversee them could lead to delays that hurt the business’s bottom line. Fortunately, there are quality tools like Remote To PC with incredible remote connection and management features that can make the process less of a hassle!