Remote employees have become an integral component of many organisations.
Nearly 33 per cent of the Australian workforce regularly start and end the day in the comfort of their own home, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. This number has grown exponentially over the last few decades as technology has in many cases turned telecommuting into a requirement, rather than a job perk. Despite it being a commonplace practice, issues still remain; namely teamwork.
Video collaboration is an effective, but under-used team building tool.
With email and phone calls providing little more than platforms to hold a quick conversation, video collaboration tools have risen in popularity due to their ability to bridge the gap between strangers. Employees in various regions are able to put a face to a name, negating the idea they're a lone wolf.
Yet just 39 per cent of companies currently deploy video regularly, Entrepreneur magazine reported. While it may seem easier on the surface to send an email, threads about important projects and deadlines can extend from a quick back-and-forth into hours long discussions about the finer details.
Effective communication is the foundation of great teamwork, perhaps even more so when remote employees are in the fold. Video conferencing provides the face-to-face interactions - that employees in the office may take for granted - to remote workers who long for better means of collaboration.
Integration is key
Successful remote workforces utilise video to mimic the ways in which staff members forge friendships in the office. Management can take a few different approaches:
- Spontaneous calls are similar to stopping by a desk; focus on drawing a personal connection before settling down to business.
- When one remote employee is on a video call, everyone else should be. Otherwise, members in a conference room may begin to talk amongst themselves and exclude other team members.
- Remote Check-ins with supervisors should be done over video. Visual cues can reveal a staff member's true feelings about a topic.
- Encourage team members to chat without being prompted by utilising an easy to use, unlimited platform.
Of course, the benefits of video collaboration rise beyond simply team building. Companies are able to save on the costs of travel and in return earn more face-time with employees than they had before. In the same vein, organisations cut down on their carbon footprints.
Effective teamwork can enhance productivity among a regionally disjointed staff, but only with the right building blocks in place. Communication doesn't have to be an obstacle; contact a Fonality representative today to find out how video collaboration can help you better manage your remote workforce.