COVID-19 has changed the work landscape indefinitely. Remote working is no longer a benefit for an employee, but an essential requirement in them accepting a job at your company. In this blog post, we share three essential aspects of remote recruitment and team management that can help you to build a great remote team.

With the advent of the COVID-19 lockdowns, you may have found yourself working remotely practically overnight. And as a marketing team lead, that probably meant learning new ways to manage team members while also navigating the changes. Quite the ask!

However, your work is not yet done; as economies begin to recover from the effects of the pandemic and lockdowns, your team is likely to grow... but they’re also more likely to expect or desire remote work. So how do you build a team under these circumstances? Luckily, building a successful, fully remote team isn’t as hard as it looks. It’s just different. 

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In this blog, we’re going to share three essential aspects of remote recruitment and team management that help you to build a great remote team.

Hiring and recruitment

A remote workforce can be productive and efficient, and building the right team begins with hiring the right people. But how has the process changed as a result of remote working? Here are some key things to bear in mind:

  • Advertising the position. Will you promote the job as on-location, or as a remote position? Think of how this may change as your company grows (including your operational plans for the future). A remote workforce can be a good way to reduce overheads, but if you plan on bringing your team back to the office full-time you should disclose that. 

  • Global hires. If you’re planning to work remotely on a permanent basis, your company has a better opportunity to hire international talent. For example, a company based in London needn’t be restricted to only hiring people who can be in the office every day. They can now consider hiring anywhere in the UK, or even the world (if doing so complies with the local legislations, of course). 

  • Assessments. Would you consider hiring someone without meeting them face-to-face? If so, how can you assess them effectively? Interviews are increasingly conducted through platforms like Zoom, but how can you. test a candidate’s skills and knowledge when they can slide in a quick Google search to help them along the way?

Day-to-day management and productivity

When you don’t have the freedom for impromptu desk-side chats, it may feel harder to keep tabs on your team. Thankfully, there are ways and means to manage a remote team that make up for these challenges. 

  • Transparency. Building in regular catch-ups, such as a daily 15-minute stand-up, can keep your team on the same page. Creating set modes of contact can also help to streamline escalations or queries when someone’s hit a snag. For example, it’s worth clearly stating when team members should send an email, or when a Slack is sufficient. 

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  • Productivity. According to the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), at the start of the pandemic, 75% of workers reported they were as, or more, productive remotely as on-location. Now that everyone’s had a chance to adapt, that number is likely far higher. Combined with productivity tools such as Accelo, clear guidelines, established workflows and agile teams, you’ll come out ahead in no time.   

  • Teamwork. Creating a safe, collaborative atmosphere can be that much tougher when you are managing a team of people that have never met in person. As new hires join existing teams, this will become more regular. Building a series of smaller marketing teams from a larger group can keep things personable. Cloud-based collaboration tools are also there to help — from communication over Zoom, to real-time collaboration using the Google Suite (or a shared contacts database on the HubSpot growth platform), you’ll find remote work can be just as potent, and more streamlined than when working in a shared office. 

Employee development

Even though what was once a perk has now become a staple, many of the crucial aspects of running a motivated team remain — no matter where they’re based. 

  • Development plans. You’ll still need sound development plans to keep your team motivated and working towards your business goals. This means understanding your team’s strengths and weaknesses, recognising potential and mapping their training and development to achieve common aims. 

  • Annual performance reviews. You may have to consider remote appraisals, but as meetings have now gone online, this transition should besimple. However, successful performance reviews now rely more heavily on reports from productivity tools such as Accelo, and close colleague/line manager reports, as daily impressions at the office no longer count. 

  • Training and coaching. How can you get employees to enroll on remote training courses? Also, how do you confirm their attendance or monitor their engagement? As you manage a remote workforce, you’ll need to find fresh ways of tracking attendance, driving home the relevance of each training program, adapting them to make them easier to access (for instance, by going mobile), or incentivising them for maximum impact. 

While there are plenty of opportunities for businesses and marketing leaders adopting remote work models, many of the onsite requirements of building a good team (with a little adaptation) remain. While you may have had a well-oiled process before, it will take concerted effort to get that team building machine up and running in the digital sphere. Thankfully, this is achievable. 

However, if you find yourself not up for the hassle, why don’t you get in touch? Book a meeting with one of our consultants and let’s see how we can help you achieve your marketing goals with our ready-to-go team of experts.   

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