Seven steps of remote workforce management

Remote workforce checklist for London startup owners

Is there a way to cut costs while maintaining quality when it comes to remote workforce management? What does “workforce management” include and imply?

1. Be sure you are comfortable with assigned remote staff

Provide detailed instructions about the job to be done and about your expectations including timelines. If you are hiring less than 4 people you may even wish to personally meet candidates via a video call before work commences. Remote Bob are pleased to offer this to all clients. In fact Remote Bob go further than this. If for any reason you decide you would like to change your assigned remote worker, we will replace them for you without any charge, (though we have never yet had to do this).

2. Consider where your remote staff will be based

If your remote staff are based in India or even further afield, the combination of a significantly off-set time zone and a strong cultural gap can bring real challenges. In comparison, Croatia is in the European time zone, and part of EU, with a more European culture, reducing the cultural gap. At a practical level this means that your Croatian team work normal hours, but still match your business day. In addition, if you wish to visit your remote department, (and we at Remote Bob welcome this) a flight from London to Croatia is inexpensive and takes only two hours in duration.

3. Ensure you know exactly what is included in the service

Each outsourcing organisation has a different business model. Some are very limited in their offerings. Consider choosing an organisation that can cover all your needs: employees salary, payroll (and even pension and health insurance if required), workplace, equipment, logistics, quality assurance, project management, supervision, and ideally CRM. Remote Bob offer a complete service scalable as required, that we feel is a significant advantage over simply hiring a freelancer from platforms such as Upwork or PeoplePerHour.

4. Understand what your remote staff are doing each day

It is crucial that you are up to date on the activities and output of your remote employees. Otherwise, you are simply incurring another expense (even if it is lower that a remote UK worker). Some agencies will offer a report on your remote team once weekly or fortnightly. More progressive agencies, such as Remote Bob, now offer the option of using their or your own CRM system, allowing you to track in real-time what your remote staff are doing. Using such systems is also important as they make it simple for you to access shared files and improve your remote workforce management.

5. Ensure your security and privacy

All responsible outsourcing companies sign nondisclosure agreements with their employees. As a client you should expect a confidentiality agreement relating to your work. This approach should now be industry-standard. It is certainly the case with all Remote Bob agreements, however some organisations remain behind the curve.

6. Understand the true cost of your remote staff

There is a significant variance in charges between outsourcing organisations. Hourly charges can vary from as low as £5 per hour to £27 per hour for a remote employee. Some organisations will reduce their costs by limiting their role to connecting you with a potential employee (and charge everything else as extra). Higher quality firms have an established holistic approach, with a system in place that ensures both the quality of staff provided, and also good conditions for remote employees. This is critical as it results in a dependable workforce, rather than a very cheap, but highly unreliable worker

7. Be sure that agreed work will be done

This is arguably the most important point. If the company cannot provide a guarantee that work will be undertaken as agreed (or they will not charge), they will probably not be a good fit for you. Remote Bob take real pride in our work. If we agree it, it will happen. No ifs or buts.