How to Build a Positive Culture with Remote Teams

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of remote teams is on the rise. As the numbers increase, odds are you are or will be managing a remote team. One of the issues you’ll have to tackle is creating and maintaining a strong culture. This defines the experience your employees have working for your company or on your team. Having an established culture and positive employee experience increases engagement, productivity, and retention. These are a few reasons why you need an effective approach to building the culture you need for your team to be successful.

Consider these tips to create a strong culture with your remote team.

Match Communication Tools with Culture

Use communication tools that promote company culture. For instance, Slack can be used as a virtual water cooler. Employees can share random work discussions, talk about the news, tell jokes, and discuss pop culture. The company intranet or programs such as WordPress theme P2 can be used to post internal updates. Threaded comments make it easy to share posts welcoming new team members, discuss work issues, and share other topics your team needs to be informed about. Google Hangouts or Zoom can be used for team meetings. Even a simple, emailed newsletter updates employees and keeps them engaged.

Send Company Swag

Ship each employee company-branded materials. They can wear the clothing, display company items on their desk, and decorate their home office with posters to create the same design aesthetic and cultural life elements as the office.

Promote Team Building

Develop communication and trust through team-building activities. Randomly set up two members of your team every week to have a casual conversation. This gets the emphasis away from business and promotes camaraderie. Or, put employees in groups based on common interests. Let each group set up some time to chat.

Create Shared Leadership

Provide opportunities for employees to take on leadership tasks. Rather than simply assigning a list of things to do, let your team take initiative on certain projects or parts of a project. This may include mentoring new team members as part of the onboarding process or leading a virtual team-building exercise. This helps your team members experience managerial functions, learn other areas of the business and potentially move up within the organization.

Establish Traditions

Encourage your team to create traditions. Repeating these activities, processes, or events creates cohesion. Teammates feel they can trust each other and openly communicate because of these shared experiences. They’ll be more open to expressing their ideas and opinions, knowing they’ll be listened to and respected.

Promote Culture Among Your Remote Team

Remote work isn’t going away anytime soon. As it continues to grow, you must promote a strong culture among your team members to maintain a cohesive company.

To find qualified professionals for your accounting and finance team, reach out to Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Our candidates understand the importance of promoting company culture while working remotely. Partner with us today.

The Name of the Game is Flexibility

If there is one thing we have learned through the COVID-19 pandemic, it is flexibility. There are countless examples of companies who are adapting their business operations, determining what work options employees have, and addressing ongoing or new project needs, to name a few. It’s not for the faint of heart, but strong business leaders have adapted well and companies with strong employee cultures are navigating how to keep remote workers engaged.

We’ve talked about how to keep employees as safe as possible in the work environment and we’ve talked about interview and onboarding practices when your workforce is offsite. What about when your business needs require the addition of employees or you’re hearing from current employees that they need more flexibility? Work still needs to be done, but the pandemic and business landscape continue to shift. What are the options?

And now that we realize this pandemic isn’t going away any time soon and kids are still in remote learning or hybrid academic environments, employees are also reviewing their options. Let’s face it. It was hard enough to work from home and help with homeschooling this spring. Rather than lose valuable employees, what if there were more creative ways to address your employee’s needs and your hiring needs? There is!

Working with our team, you have most likely used our services to fill both direct hire and temporary positions. Rather than jump further into the deep end of the pool of uncertainty, it seems logical that filling open positions with temporary workers makes the most sense. Plus, with most companies still allowing work-from-home options, your talent pool has grown exponentially. There is lots of potential to tap into from unemployed workers who aren’t even located nearby. Let’s snap up that talent. What a great position to be in.

How to Creatively Manage the Budget and the Workload

Here are some options and ideas to consider:

First, talk to your employees about any struggles they are having. Determine if there is a way to offer more flexible schedules or fewer hours. Help them address their family needs while keeping their job and getting work done.

Second, if you reduced your workforce earlier this year, look at that pool of former employees to see if some of them could fit well into the new flexible work schedule. Figure out what is being offloaded by current employees needing flexibility and/or fewer hours and determine who are the good candidates to handle the work. After all, they know the company and culture and would still make a great addition without bringing them back onto your payroll full-time.

Temp, Temp-to-Hire, Direct Hire and … Direct Sourcing

Besides temporary, temp-to-hire and direct hire opportunities, another option to consider throughout the pandemic is direct sourcing. This term is commonly referred to as the process by which you source the candidate or a member of your internal staff, and those “employees” are placed on our payroll. This might help with budgeting as you already have found the candidate, but you are uncertain how long you will need them. It’s the best of both worlds and here is how it might work for you.

In the previous example of a current employee who wants more flexibility or fewer hours, you could work out an arrangement where he or she switches over to our associate as a temporary. Then, if you have an employee who was furloughed who is also available to pick up the rest of the work, that employee can become our associate as well. The temporary needs can fluctuate based on the workload. When things improve and the pandemic is behind us, you can decide which associates convert to your payroll.

According to Staffing Industry Analyst’s Workforce Solutions Buyer Survey 2019 report, 26% of employers use direct sourcing today and 41% plan to seriously consider it within the next two years.

Being agile will win in the long term. Let us help you with your business strategies and develop the best blend of hiring options for you today and into the future.