Updated: Dec 3, 2020
2020 has changed the way we do business. If you’re scaling your business, and looking to add to your team, you’ll want to know how to build a remote team.
Automating and streamlining is a great way to free up your time and avoid costly mistakes. However, there comes a time when systemising tasks reaches capacity. This is when you need to take the plunge and hire people to help you take your business to the next level.
Building a team in 2020 looks vastly different to what it did even just five years ago. With technology getting better by the day and a booming gig economy, it’s never been more easy or effective to build a fully functioning remote team.
Even if you’re not quite there yet, you can start to get your business ‘team ready’ with the following systems, tools and processes.
How to Build a Remote Team.
| Develop standard operating procedures and workflows
Figuring out how to build a remote team starts with procedures and workflows. Before bringing someone else into your business, you want to have your these established. (Whilst processes evolve with time, it’s important you establish a base level of ‘how’ you want things to be done). A standard operating procedure is simply a step-by-step process for how to complete tasks (e.g. administration, social media, client enquiries and follow-up, etc).
By taking the time to map your processes you will not only have solid ‘best practices’, you will also ensure your new team members have what they need to be successful. You’ll also have a good understanding of the time required to complete key tasks.
| Project Management Tool
If you are running a remote team, you will need an online project management tool to assign tasks and keep track of where things are across your business. (This is actually good practice even if you are a solopreneur.)
There are a number of great tools available. I highly recommend you do your research to determine what would work best for you, your budget and your business. Some tools to investigate are Asana, Trello, Monday and Clickup.
| Company e-handbook
When bringing in a new team member it's good to have a company handbook (even if you’re still small). You don’t need to overcomplicate this. It should include things like company values, mission and vision, as well as any training of products or services.
You should also include a code of conduct. If your team member is communicating with your clients, it’s essential you lay out your expectations in black and white. And if you have a team member doing any design work, you should include your brand guidelines.
| Onboarding Process + Checklist
You will want every person coming into the team to have all the information, tools, support and resources needed to ensure they can do the best job possible. Therefore investing time in developing an onboarding process and checklist is time well spent. It guarantees everyone is on the same page.
| Systems Training
Every business operates differently. Therefore it’s important that you are clear and transparent on how to use your chosen systems. You can have this pre-recorded and simply provide your new team member with a video to watch. This saves you repeating the process over and over.
| Job description
Whilst your positions may be held by freelancers, it’s still important to establish job descriptions, which will include work hours, responsibilities, requirements and expectations. Having a description will make the hiring and engagement process that much easier because you can clearly articulate requirements.
This is also a great process for you to undertake as it allows you to be really clear on the different ‘positions’ in your business. And you can clarify exactly what you intend to hand over. This ensures you get the right person for the job.
| 1:1 Meetings
When hiring a remote team member, it’s essential you create time to meet with them on a regular basis as they get settled in. By investing time in helping them get up to speed it will prevent mishaps and being bombarded with questions.
| Communication tools and framework
Providing a method for your team to communicate with you and each other is essential. There are many tools available: Whatsapp, Zoom, slack, email, phone and, of course, your project management tool of choice. It’s important to establish boundaries and a process for communications that honour your time as well as your remote team member’s time.
| Letter of engagement for contractors
It's a good idea to seek legal help with creating a letter of engagement / contract for any new remote team members you bring into your business. You want to ensure that you, your business and the new team member are lawfully protected.
Building a remote team is both exciting and daunting. By investing time into getting your systems, processes and tools in order, you're less likely to encounter potential disasters!
If you are looking for more tips on how to build a remote team or have any questions, feel free to ask away down below. 👇🏽👇🏽