How to Effectively Manage a Remote Team
Ever hear the expression, “out of sight, out of mind?” Well, that’s how many remote workers feel when their managers leave them out of the loop. Many would agree that management of any team (big or small) can be challenging, requiring dedication and close attention to detail. You can probably imagine that managing remote teams presents the greatest challenges, especially when it comes to managing HIM and ODM workers. Fortunately, there are many ways to effectively manage remote teams so work productivity and business results are not altered or have any negative impact on organizational outcomes.
Whether you manage a remote team of 10 or 100, here are some best practices to follow as you manage and lead your offsite HIM and ODM workers:
Establish fluid, ongoing communication. The most significant barrier in managing remote workers is lack of effective and consistent communication. While open lines of communication are critical for all employees, they are especially critical for remote workers who need to stay informed and engaged just as much (if not more) as your on-site workers. Weekly virtual meetings are a common way for organizations to keep both their on-site and off-site workforce connected and informed about the latest changes, issues or implementations within various departments. There are several ways to conduct communication for remote workers, such as videoconferencing technology, conference calls and email. Whatever method you choose, it’s important to establish communications protocols that all remote workers must adhere to and follow on a regular basis. Letting communication slip through the cracks is a surefire way to hurt productivity and employee retention, as disengaged workers are generally unhappy workers.
Set up a tailored performance evaluation system. Because you must inevitably manage remote workers a bit differently, you must also recognize them differently. Obviously, you are not with them every day in person to provide verbal feedback about their performance. Therefore, consider setting up a performance management process in which your remote employees are evaluated by clearly defined goals and standards. Developing this type of system will ensure fair evaluation of your remote employees’ accomplishments (or lack thereof), rather than just the number of hours they “clock in” each week. However, even with a strategic system in place, you must be especially organized and intentional about evaluations, as it’s easy to pay less attention to your workers who aren’t physically with you each day.
Provide proper onboarding and training. Just because your remote HIM or ODM workers aren’t on-site doesn’t mean you can neglect to properly onboard and train them. Your remote workers require just as much, if not more, onboarding and training because being off-site makes it more difficult to learn and become immersed in the organization. According to the Society For Human Resource Management, it’s important you’re proactive about giving your remote workers virtual training and support through resources such as online training; accessible and responsible leadership; and appropriate use of technology. The more onboarding and training provided to remote workers, the more they will feel confident in their roles and integrated with the culture of your organization.
Every practice outlined above will help to prevent your remote workers from feeling alienated or disconnected from your organization. By giving the management of your remote employees the time and attention they deserve, you will improve business outcomes and create a workforce in which all your employees have the tools to function at their highest level.
Are you seeking remote HIM or CDI specialists for your team?
It’s time to get in touch with MedPartners and let us find the most qualified and talented candidates for your organization.