Whether you are trying to keep your workers safe or keep costs low, there’s no better time than now to let your employees work remotely. Working from home can give you and your staff the flexibility they need to create real work-life balance, but hiring remote workers can also open your business up to a bigger talent pool for new-hires. Despite these big benefits, you may still have some questions about why and how to put your remote team together. Luckily, you’ll find answers to those pressing questions below.
Are Remote Workers Really Working?
If you’ve only ever worked in offices before, there’s no shame in asking this question. After all, it can be hard to know that your employees are really getting the job done when you can’t check in with them throughout the day. If this is one of your top concerns, you should know that you can use collaborative tools to check in with your staff even when you are all working from your own homes. For instance, you can connect your team via a tool like Slack, which essentially creates dedicated communication channels that can be tailored to teams, projects and other specific purposes. You can even create a company-wide newsfeed so that your team will always be on the same page. Now if you want to keep even more tabs on your workers, you could use tracking tools that will give you a breakdown of their productivity. While monitoring can sometimes be helpful, it’s important to balance these tracking tools with a management approach that includes compassion, empathy and most of all, trust in your team.
Will Hiring Remote Staff Cut Costs?
The answer to this question is a resounding “yes.” That’s because when you hire remote workers, you can forego the added expenses of renting office space, which can result in huge savings for your small business. In larger cities, like New York and Washington D.C., businesses can expect to spend anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 per year per employee to procure office space. Even businesses in smaller cities can end up spending tens of thousands of dollars annually on an office lease. So this should be reason enough to consider letting your new staff work remotely.
Of course, the savings of opting into remote work don’t stop there, especially when you hire freelancers to fill your team. Freelancers have the skills to help you with a variety of projects, including developing a website, designing marketing materials, writing content and improving sales. Freelancers usually use their own equipment, which can save your business considerable costs. Though if you really want to cut costs, the best way may be to work with a financial coach.
Can Remote Teams Still Meet Together?
Even though tools like Slack make it easier to connect with remote workers, having facetime with your employees can also be important. If your staff members are all in the same geographical location, you could always find a local meeting space where you can collaborate in person. In fact, you can usually find free meeting spaces in most locations, which can include libraries, theaters, coffee shops or restaurants. Depending on your comfort level, you can also host a meeting in your home or the home of another staff member.
Another economical yet effective option for working one-on-one with your staff members is a coworking space. With a coworking space, you can rent a desk or meeting area on a monthly or as-needed basis, plus you get an opportunity to connect with other small business owners in your community. Finally, if you simply want to be able to see your team members’ faces, Zoom is another meeting option.
Hiring remote staff or transitioning your existing staff to remote work doesn’t have to be nerve-wracking. With the rise in popularity of remote work, there are endless tools to help you manage your team’s productivity and keep everyone connected. Plus, you will be saving yourself a lot of extra expense by allowing your staff to work from home. So really, it’s a win-win for everyone!