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The Growing Remote Workforce

Business Technology | April 18, 2012

Remote working is becoming more prevalent in the business world today. This is possible due to advancements in technology; i.e. smartphones, tablets, and the growing number of public places that have WiFi. There can be many advantages for the employer and the employee. Remote workers are often more productive, and they are generally less of a drain on the company resources. For example, you don’t need to have office space and furniture for remote works. And the benefit of adjusting their schedule to fit their life is a big plus for the employee.

Remote Worker Challenges

Remote workers and contractors do present at least one considerable challenge to employers: It can be difficult for employers to effectively monitor the hours that their workers are putting in. How do employers know, after all, if their remote employees are pounding away at their keyboards or playing Angry Birds on their smartphones all day?

By setting realistic deadlines employers can keep track of their remote workers effectively. This is a change in managerial strategy; it puts the focus on the goal instead of the hours that the employee works. Ultimately, employees are the only ones who know when they perform most optimally, even if it is from midnight to 4am.

Setting Remote Worker Deadlines

Setting deadlines is the easiest method to monitor the work being carried out by remote workers. Supervisors can set short-term and long-term goals or make something due every Friday. Additionally, a manger could have a weekly or biweekly meeting via cellphone or video chat to catch up on the development of projects. This can put the supervisor and employee at ease.

Off-Site Not a Permanent Condition

While many individuals may have the personal discipline and time management skills to successfully work remotely, some don’t. So, if an employee doesn’t work well remotely, and that has become obvious, remote working doesn’t have to stay permanent, it can easily be revoked. Ultimately, trust within the employee/employer relationship is among the key components of a effective remote working relationship. The employee needs to preserve that trust by hitting deadlines and delivering top quality work.


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