Working remotely isn't a new idea, but it's more popular in Canada than ever. In December 2020, remote workers made up more than 28% of the Canadian workforce, thanks in part to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a recent study, nearly 40% of Canadian jobs have remote potential, so we can expect that figure to increase sharply over the next few years.
There are lots of perks associated with remote work: a more flexible schedule and the freedom to work almost anywhere, for example. Remote teams, however, present specific management challenges.
So, how can you help your team adapt to remote work and build a long-term telecommuting strategy? The answer is simple: Create a strong remote work strategy from the very beginning.
Remote team management begins with identifying two popular remote work models: full-remote and hybrid. Many companies adopt one model over the other — and we can provide insight into the unique supervisory challenges associated with each remote work option.
identify remote work pain points and devise solutions
Some remote workers have well-equipped home offices, while others hot-desk at their kitchen counters and dining tables. Some remote workers live alone, while others juggle home-schooling with client calls and laundry with Zoom meetings. Find out how you can accommodate the needs of each individual on your team without losing that cohesive company vibe.
insider tips about remote team management
Remote team management isn't the same as on-site team management — but it doesn't have to be frustrating, exhausting or lonely. Instead, equip yourself with the skills you need to be productive off site and keep your team fully engaged. Learn how to:
- Perform a thorough self-assessment
- Acknowledge and tackle remote work resentment
- Keep teams on point
- Communicate effectively
- The difference between 'urgent' and 'important'
motivate and inspire your remote workers
Remember when you first went remote? You and your team probably felt enthusiastic about the change and perhaps a little giddy about working from home. Then, reality set in. 'Remote fatigue' is a real phenomenon — and so is team detachment. We can teach you how to rekindle that initial passion and bring your team closer than ever.
create and maintain a social team vibe
Remote work doesn't have to mean isolation. Find out how to strengthen the social connections within your team by:
- Creating digital events to bring your people together
- Checking in with remote workers to see how they're doing
- Recognizing team members' achievements online
- Leaving your virtual office door open
Encourage your team to talk — and pair workers with 'visibility buddies' to keep them connected. Need further inspiration? We offer even more team-building advice in our guide.
remote hiring and remote HR
Remote hiring is a little different from face-to-face hiring. Instead of in-person interviews, you'll connect with applicants via video chat; instead of paper onboarding, you'll onboard new hires digitally. Remote work opens up a world of possibility for international collaboration — and telecommuting is more inclusive for people with disabilities too. Everyone gets a seat at the table.
onboard new hires
Training doesn't stop when teams go remote. Instead, it goes online. Lots of options exist for online training, but the best revolve around two-way communication and screen-sharing. Provide mentors and trainers with materials well in advance, and give new hires cheat sheets to help them learn.
offer leadership training
Don't forget about online leadership skills training. After all, great managers create great remote teams. The best supervisors are self-aware, inclusive and listen to learn rather than to judge. Excellent leaders adapt to challenges and grow through adversity — and they help the people on their teams do the same.
procure the tools and resources your team needs
Remote teams need robust tools to achieve results — just like office-based teams. Don't expect workers to buy their own tech: Instead, supply them with reliable laptops, company phones and other electronics. Create a serial number database to track devices, and grant workers access to vital software via a company VPN.
implement data security best practices
Don't leave data security to chance. Train your team — and encourage workers never to print documents if they don't need to. Keep calls confidential, and make passwords compulsory on company gadgets. Online refresher training can help keep data security top of the agenda, year after year.
download the complete guide to managing your remote workforce
Want to know more about managing a remote workforce? The information in our comprehensive guide can help you master remote management and take your remote team to the next level. In it, we explore communication tips, remote management best practices, strategies for long-term success — and more. Let us provide valuable insights into effective remote management.