As things are finally looking good with the ongoing vaccine distributions, the possibilities are endless with respect to looking beyond office walls – remote work is here to stay! However, businesses using virtual teams can initially come across inevitable hiccups during the hiring, onboarding or accessing processes of the outsourcing company. These hiccups may bar companies from working with remote teams. What are these challenges and how can you overcome them so that you can enjoy the benefits of outsourcing?
Before we get into the how, let us take a look at the benefits of working with remote teams. Hiring a third-party outsourcing specialist helps you in cost reduction and saves ample of your time. According to virtual team collaboration statistics, remote working can save employers as much as $11,000 per year. We are sure you will also agree to the following benefits of outsourcing, as stated in an article in Borderlessmind.
Hires from different time-zones
Having a diverse team from different time zones working for you is always considered beneficial. When people from different time zones and cultures come together, they break all barriers of preconceived notions and old viewpoints about remote teams being ineffective and too difficult to handle. Your remote team can bring a fresh set of eyes to the tables to meet your business challenges and reach a broader audience than you usually do.
Round the clock operations
Round-the-clock operations let your internal team get a head start when they work the next day. You will be amazed to know the variety of services your remote team can undertake, from records retrieval to database management. With a remote team, you can have people catering to your customer 24×7. In some cases, you may be required to offer detailed briefing to the team for quick turnaround times.
Ideas and innovation
In order to grow the business, you need to walk with the current trends of the market. You are best at hiring such talented minds for your business that will bring creative ideas to the table. Hiring a back-office specialist will allow you to focus on idea building, planning and execution, while the remote team will handle non-core activities of your business and let you effectively use your time. Such core activities improve the business processes with innovation and ideas as brought to the table by your internal teams. Innovations are proof that your business has room for growth and is essential for the future of any industry. Over a period of time, it becomes essential for you and your resources to be free from menial tasks and focus on areas where they excel.
Access a larger talent pool
Finding the right match as your outsourcing partner will let you open a wide pool of opportunities as you will now work with a team of specially qualified, industry-specific trained, self-driven and experienced remote workers. They are aware of the best practices and ways to achieve targets for your deliverables.
Reduce your overheads
With remote teams handling their side of operations from across the sea, you don’t have to pay for their electricity, food or other bills. You may have to take additional measures to satisfy your internal teams, but your remote teams are beyond all that. For example, you do not have to pay for transportation or other benefits or spend money to train them.
Banish project delays
Hiring a remote team is equivalent to hiring a trusted vendor. What does this mean? This would mean that you are delegating a task or a project to a team at a reduction of cost as you would have paid your employee. Additionally, the absence of a member in your remote team does not affect the deliverable target of your business. For example, if a member of your internal team is not reporting for your job today, you might face a delay in meeting the deadline of your recent project. The priority is meeting your project deadline. Depending on your relationship with the offshore vendor, even if their employee is away, an equally qualified and intelligent alternative will be given your project information and begin work immediately so there will be no project delays.
When you are growing and expanding your business, you need to have strong back-office support that will work for you while you focus on the core competencies. During these periods of growth, your business might need some support, you always want to have some way to save on costs. This is exactly why you need to have a remote team at your assistance. It is no longer uncommon for companies to hire long-distance employees. The growing need for an outsourcing specialist has been tapped by various business heads and the graph is only increasing. So once again, we ask the question, what challenges concern records retrieval, recruitment, accounting and digital marketing, due to which companies do not prefer remote working?
Law firm agencies, medical companies and insurance companies might seldom need help to recover large numbers of records in a short span of time. This branch of service can fall prey to simple human error. Companies are searching for ways to improve their practices when dealing with sensitive records.
Communication is key to success when working with remote records retrieval teams. Due to a lack of proper communication channels, the team (remote or internal team) may collect improper input. Miscommunication might result in errors or missed deadlines. When teams operate over long distances, it is all the more essential that open relationships are cultivated.
Even while working remotely, you might want to know what the records retrieval team is working on and their productivity! While tracking productivity can initially seem daunting, with strong reporting protocols in place, you will be able to get weekly, daily and in some industries, even hourly updates on the progress of work – so you can monitor your team in real-time regardless of the geographical distance.
The role of records retrieval specialists is to help companies streamline their business practices and store large quantities of data that need to be accessed and decentralized by various departments daily. Stay tuned to know how to overcome these challenges.
It is common to find that outsourcing the recruitment process (i.e. human resource outsourcing) helps to reduce the cost of the company as it saves a lot of money. However, regardless of any geographical differences, the remote work environment recruitment process may increase the number of issues related to outsourcing compared to when people work on a face-to-face basis within the organization building, such as the following.
Trust is the biggest challenge when you contact the outsourcing recruitment process as remote work. Is an overseas company efficient enough to pull out these tasks? How can you check if they are proficient enough to make the right hires or not? Being transparent is the solution, but how can you keep checking on working hours, pay rate, timelines and status? You would need to build trust within your working relationship.
RPO is a service that requires on-point communication with the client as well as candidates. It might get difficult for the agency to keep track of what project the remote team is working on or understand the job description well. Is it possible to call them at the end of each shift, asking if they called 150 candidates or not? That would be a silly waste of time. In the past, we have worked with clients who have very specific requirements. These clients often ask us to put their virtual recruiters through a rigorous training program, and then the recruiters are ready to start reaching out to people and begin sourcing in earnest.
A large number of businesses and companies outsource to recruit the best possible skills. Read our blog on “How can we be ready for the permanent transition to remote teams?” to learn how to choose the best outsourcing specialist. Let’s take a look at some more challenging areas.
Many accounting firms dealing with payroll, taxes and other functions are concerned about the challenges of outsourced accounting services. Identifying these challenges is the best way to find solutions to them. In the long run, once you have overcome the challenges, you understand that there are many benefits associated with outsourcing financial services. These are common problems that businesses may face.
One of the biggest challenges faced by accounting services is scheduling meetings or phone calls to resolve difficulties. There may be issues with specific tax laws or payment processes. Using tools to facilitate calls, video conferencing or meeting with remote groups can sound like extra labor.
Transferring sensitive documents
As outsourced accountants offset their duties, there is a lot of data transfer of important financial information. This transfer may put your financial data at risk. While most outsourcing companies offer secure ways to share information, some customers may be indifferent and send important information via email, leading to data threats. Most well-reputed outsourcing firms have strong privacy and confidentiality policies in place.
There will always be challenges in business. “I’ve found that being prepared and having the right tools make all the difference in the end, ”says Annette Ponnock, Postdoctoral Research Associate at Yale, quoted by Learn Hub. As an entrepreneur, you should not allow these challenges to prevent you from achieving your goals. Your business may benefit from outsourced accounting services when you know how to overcome the obstacles outlined above. Keep reading the blog further, if you want to know how to overcome these problems.
The digital marketing team needs people who have the pulse of the latest marketing trends. Not only do you need people who understand the world of marketing, but you also need people who understand the essence of your brand. Let’s take a look at the challenges faced by businesses.
Cultivating the organizational culture in your remote team takes time. When dealing with the services related to digital marketing and interacting with the customers, it is essential that they interact with a face that represents your business with the most authenticity. Foster healthy communication and promote the business culture throughout the team.
Scheduling periodic one-on-ones
Digital marketing enables the company to expand its horizons and break the geographical barriers to interact with customers. The importance and significance of this service are known and accepted. For better performances in this interaction, it must be updated on the customer preferences and lead generation, if only. For these updates, it may seem to be a hassle to schedule regular meetings.
Overcoming problems with the following solutions
Be it digital marketing, video surveillance, healthcare or any other division, managing a remote team is challenging. Especially if you want to continue “business as usual,” both teams should work towards a common goal. Now that you know you know the problems and risks involved in hiring a remote team, let’s learn about the strategies as suggested by Time Doctor on overcoming the common challenges and move on to enjoy the benefits.
When you are a remote team, it is essential to set clear guidelines on communication, otherwise, you can end up with miscommunication and disappointments. To not face miscommunication or feel any obstacles while interacting with remote teams, set up a fixed dedicated schedule for the calls & meetings. It is advisable to use instant messaging applications for quick redressal.
When you have people working from home or an off-site location, it may seem easier to get them to work longer hours or take on more projects. To avoid discrepancies in work, you can set clear goals and use tools like Google calendars, Zoho. Leadership and management styles make a difference. With your virtual team in a different location, you must reinforce work standards and responsibilities across the board. An article in Go Remotely states that 83% of employees rely on using technology for collaboration.
It is very normal to face culture issues while managing your offshore team. Company culture is developed over time and hiring a remote team may feel like a setback. Consider developing company culture via periodic calls and regular catch-up sessions to make them feel involved as your team. Gallup shows that extremely connected teams demonstrate a 21% increase in profitability. Pick an offshore vendor that already has a positive, productive culture in place.
Building trust and security
We know that data leak is a risk, but the risk is not dependent on the geographical location of your team but on the professionalism of your people. Remote teams are fully-functioned offices following strict security measures to protect client data, trust and reputation. As always, having an honest, transparent relationship with your offshore team pays off huge dividends when trying to build a culture of trust.
At first, it may seem challenging to thrive in a remote work environment, but that doesn’t mean it can not be adapted to suit your growth needs. When you want to outsource your projects for records retrieval, accounting, recruitment or digital marketing, you may face the challenges like the ones we covered above. All you need is a little time, patience, organization and tons of clear communication about expectations.
If you need solutions to more offshore team challenges, you can connect with us at our social media channels or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org