When you are managing a remote team, motivating everyone becomes a lot complex. After all, you don’t have the luxury to be in the same room or carry out personal meetings to discuss stuff.
Thankfully, we live in a world where we have the technology to solve almost every problem. And in this context, project management software is the technology that has made lives easy for managers and remote teams.
Now, you might be wondering how do you manage a remote team using project management software? Well, that’s precisely what we are going to discuss in this post.
So, without further ado, let us straight away get to the point:
Managing Remote Team Using A Project Management Software
Get Everyone on Board
Onboarding is the most crucial part of managing a remote team using project management software. You need to be smart with picking the right software for your team since there is no scope for misjudgment.
Go for a tool that’s easy to use and comes with a trial so that the entire team can get on board without struggling. There are plenty of fantastic project management software options out there in the market that comes with a neat interface and are relatively easy for teams to get used to.
Once the team is on board, the second important step is to have a pre-defined workflow for your team.
For instance, if you are managing a digital marketing team, you need to be updated for digital marketing trends, you need to create workflow according to the processes they ought to follow in their daily routine. It gives everyone a sense of direction; otherwise, it can be pretty easy for team members to lose their path.
After all, they cannot simply get up and go to the manager’s desk to ask a question or discuss if there’s something they cannot understand.
Create Tasks with Deadlines
The most significant factor in determining the success of a remote team is Time Management. You need to be very specific with deadlines and create tasks with a start + finish time and routinely implement time tracking apps to increase productivity.
It inculcates a sense of responsibility and accountability; it also incites team members to avoid procrastination. As they know, they are supposed to deliver something within the deadline as compared to free-flowing work.
Document Processes, Guidelines, Requirements, and Expectations
Another critical aspect of managing remote teams using project management software is to make important information easily accessible and available to the entire team.
You need to have a central, shared space where all the vital information like business processes, work guidelines, project information, and employee expectations are stored together. It ensures that there is no scope left for any confusion to creep in, and your team members have their eyes set on what they are supposed to achieve, as well as how they are supposed to achieve it.
Have Clear Channels for Communication
You also need to make sure that specific communication channels are available and defined for every team member to use when they are supposed to communicate.
For instance, using a chat tool to create one group for work-related conversations, another for casual office chit chat, and using a video conferencing tool for virtual brainstorming sessions.
Keep all this sorted and communicate it clearly with everyone to know how to approach each other, whenever they need to.
Stay Connected and Check-in Frequently
According to a 2017 study quoted by the HBR, 52% of the remote employees feel left out. If you do not want that to be happening to your remote team, make sure that you inculcate that feeling of being together as a team.
Have conversations about work and beyond that. Create activities like virtual coffee breaks, fun sessions now and then, and so on. Companies are also using social media management tools to create an interactive community by staying connected. These are great ways to break the ice and an excellent way for remote employees to understand each other better.
That’s About It!
As you can see, managing a remote team using project management software is no rocket science. However, it involves a lot of common sense. You need to be street-smart, first in picking the right software for your team and then in ensuring that everyone in your team gets accustomed to it.
Once that is done, you can quickly get everyone used to the workflow that you will define, and things can continue to function smoothly afterward.
About the Author:
Vartika Kashyap is the CMO at ProofHub and has been one of the LinkedIn Top Voices in 2018. Her articles are inspired by office situations and work-related events. She likes to write about productivity, team building, work culture, leadership, entrepreneurship among others and contributing to a better workplace is what makes her click.