During this initial hour of research, we were able to identify two best practices in working remotely and managing a remote team: 1) fostering positive communication and 2) using smart tools.
Foster Open Communication
- A recent Forbes article states that team leaders should strive to "strengthen communication and team cohesion" when managing remote employees. Examples of methods remote team leaders might consider include holding daily check-in meetings and choosing video calls over email.
- This is a best practice because a remote work environment often means that employees have less regular access to important information than they would in a traditional office setting. Fostering open communication builds trust between team members and leadership.
- The Harvard Business Review points out that establishing clear communication guidelines and expectations is crucial in a remote office because a lack of body language and longer response times can lead to misunderstandings. For example, team members could misinterpret a terse message as a harsh reprimand when it was never intended as such.
Use Smart Tools
- According to USA Today, using smart tools can help remote workers and team leaders increase efficiency rates while working remotely. Examples include:
- Office 365, which features the standard Microsoft Office Suite, as well as "conferencing tools like chat and video calls;"
- Zoom, a video call, chat, and conferencing tool;
- Slack, a remote work platform with chat features, office tools, and video call capabilities.
- This is a best practice because 54% of businesses site "poor technology and/or infrastructure" as the "biggest barrier to effective remote working." Utilizing today's cloud technology, artificial intelligence (AI) tools, and digital workplace apps is a key way to mitigate this concern.
- Leadership can also use "workplace and people analytics tools" to gain insight into the well-being and productivity levels of remote team members.
- Shared calendars like Google Calendars and Zoho can help remote teams stay organized and informed of important conferences, meetings, or events.
- At a bare minimum, tools that remote teams need for an efficient virtual office are a strong internet connection, email, and a virtual call app like Skype or FaceTime.
- The top fields offering remote work opportunities include information technology (IT), health care, education, and customer service.
- Flex Jobs posted a list of the top 100 companies with remote work teams that can be found here.
Summary of Findings
- During this hour, we focused on identifying best practices in working remotely and managing a remote team. Our findings indicate that further research would yield additional results.
- We could also provide case studies of companies that have been successful in establishing and managing remote work teams. If there are any specific companies that you'd like us to examine, please provide that information when selecting the corresponding proposal below.
In addition to this public search, we scanned our proprietary research database of over 1 million sources and were unable to find any specific research reports that address your goals.