Equipping Your Remote Teams for Success


Equipping Your Remote Teams for Success

Managing a Remote Workforce- Part Four

As implementing and managing a remote workforce can be a time-consuming and challenging venture, it is crucial to explore the unique opportunities available that will ensure that your remote teams are set for success. Technology has improved over the past 5-10 years, making it easier than ever to provide your teams with a set of tools to tackle even the most daunting tasks.  While most businesses have settled into a remote work environment, has your outsourcing partner kept up?

It starts with a leadership team that embraces a modern approach to remote work and provides a sense of calm in the midst of chaos. Equipping your remote teams with the right hardware, software, and office equipment, expectations, and remote culture from day one will result in higher productivity, a sense of community, and long-term success.

Depending on the type of work and pace at which the work should be completed, it is important to determine the right technology set-up for each of your teams. From the time of onboarding, you need to consider what you will provide your employees, versus what you expect them to bring to the employment relationship. Will you provide them with an office chair, laptop, dual monitors, a docking station, keyboard, and mouse? Do you expect all employees to have home internet, or will you provide a stipend? If your employees are expected to have heavy call volumes, have you enabled softphones available through their laptops, or is everyone expected to take calls on their cell phones, and what if they don’t have cell phones? You will also want to consider the efficiency of your onboarding process for remote employees when there are things to be shipped or picked up from the on-site headquarters.

Wi-Fi speed is also something to be considered and well-thought-out now that video meetings are no longer the exception, but the rule. Add the additional bandwidth required to have multiple people working efficiently from home combined with the pull of students who are remote learning and the standard, most affordable Wi-Fi packages may no longer be sufficient.

Due to the nature of being remote, many organizations rely more heavily on software packages that are browser-based versus installed software programs. These online apps ensure that teams are able to create and share documents in real-time.

Nothing beats face-to-face interaction with co-workers and employees. However, with almost all work being completed virtually these days, you will want to explore a communication tool that closely mimics your in-office communication structure.  Encourage employees to use video while in virtual meetings and feel comfortable turning off the camera from time-to-time.

Liberty Source understands that equipping remote and distributed teams with the right tools, policies and remote culture are key to a successful, productive remote workforce. Our leadership is experienced in and consistently seeking new exciting ways to effectively engage with our remote employees, guaranteeing the teams we employ for your business processes are loyal, productive, and motivated to giving you the best quality products.

Contact Liberty Source today to discover how we can partner with your company for all your flexible outsourcing business needs.

Engagement is Key to Managing a Successful Remote Workforce


Engagement is Key to Managing a Successful Remote Workforce

Managing a Remote Workforce- Part Three


The recent pandemic has illustrated to all of us the value of resiliency. The resiliency of any organization depends heavily on the adaptability, flexibility, and vision of the leadership and workforce. Many of the things we have historically taken for granted have been stripped away from us. Where we once gathered in person to celebrate, plan, and learn, we must now rely on technology and transformative management techniques to bring us together. All beliefs and expectations on how the world works are being broken down and must be rebuilt with creativity and simplicity. Including the relationships you’ve built with your outsourcing provider and the way your provider approaches service delivery.

As we look to the future, it’s no longer acceptable for the outsourcing firm you partner with to have the option of remote work as part of their business continuity plan. It’s vital they have a workplace plan which includes standards for remote work as part of their daily operations.

In a remote work environment, full engagement and dedication of employees are more important than ever before. Your outsourcing partner must take new steps to infuse their organization’s culture into the daily remote lives of their employees, set new goals and expectations, and follow through on commitments made to a workforce they can no longer physically see.

Since few things are more critical to the success of a remote workforce than employee engagement, when choosing an outsourcing company to partner with, it is imperative to discover the level of engagement that their managers have with their remote teams.

When employees feel engaged, they report greater motivation and employee satisfaction, provide higher quality work, are more productive, and are more loyal. It can be difficult enough to engage employees that are collocated in an office together, let alone a workforce that is scattered and may be working in different time zones.

There are a variety of ways to improve a remote employee’s engagement levels including implementing a virtual office space for collaboration, reinforce company culture, provide frequent feedback, require virtual face to face company engagements, demonstrate a genuine interest in your employees and express empathy for needs expressed by your employees no matter what those needs may be.


Have a “Virtual Office”

Creating a virtual office should include a cloud-based space to share work ideas and documents for projects, but should also include a means of communication. Effective communication is imperative to employee productivity and engagement but is particularly important with remote workers. With most experts agreeing that 70 to 93 percent of all communication is nonverbal, managers that are successful in engaging their remote teams, recognize that much more than just email is needed.

While email is an excellent tool for quick and concise communications that do not have any nuances, virtual meetings platforms like 8×8 and Zoom provide more effective communication where body language, tone, and eye contact can give clues on how information and ideas are being presented and received. Take note of how your employees are interacting with the tools they’ve been given; are they able to relax, or are they nervous speaking to a screen than to a person. Leadership plays a key role in helping employees understand the value of engaging video presence. Additionally, employees may benefit from company-issued guidelines on video interaction and including when video is required and how to put your best self forward over video.


Reinforcing Company Culture and Values

According to a Glassdoor survey, 56% of employees find an ethical workplace culture more important than salary. When employees are co-located, employees feel a sense of shared purpose more quickly, making company culture easier to build and maintain. It is important to ensure that remote workers feel that sense of shared purpose and clearly understand your company culture and values. Managers should use every employee interaction to reinforce a positive company culture and should lead by example, always adhering to company values.

In addition, many remote workers report feelings of isolation that can impede a sense of shared purpose and culture. Virtual meetings can help build rapport, reduce feelings of isolation, and drive feelings of community and shared understanding. Managers should utilize this technology for not just work-related meetings, but should also promote the use of video calls for team building exercises and socialization. Implementing virtual happy hours, game nights, or even exercise classes and challenges can help form strong team bonds that will lead to higher productivity and satisfaction.

Provide More Frequent Feedback and Recognize Superior Work

A large part of engaging with your workers is providing feedback. Employees in a traditional office environment have the advantage of being in more contact with their leadership, where feedback is happening consistently. When dealing with remote workers, it is easy to forget the basic need for feedback when, in actuality, feedback is even more crucial for remote workers. It is crucial for managers to regularly provide constructive criticism and positive feedback to their teleworking employees to clearly understand where they are excelling and where improvements can be made.

Another way to foster greater engagement is to recognize superior work formally. Employees who have their work recognized feel more appreciated and are more engaged. Some ways to do this are to send them a message that explicitly points out their accomplishments, share their successes with the entire team, and set up an online recognition platform that allows employees to recognize one another for their accomplishments publicly.

Liberty Source understands that engagement is key to a successful, productive remote workforce. Our leadership is experienced in and consistently seeking new exciting ways to effectively engage with our teleworking employees, guaranteeing the teams we employ for your business processes are loyal, productive, and motivated to giving you the best quality products.

Contact Liberty Source today to discover how we can partner with your company for all your outsourcing business needs.


Productivity Hacks for Managing a Remote Workforce


Productivity Hacks for Managing a Remote Workforce

     Managing a Remote Workforce- Part Two

The past few years have seen an explosion in flexible remote work opportunities, with the recent pandemic accelerating this. Of course, long-term telecommuting is different from the crisis-related working-from-home that’s now widespread. However, businesses are quickly recognizing the benefits and opportunities for telework. Employees are embracing the life-work balance that is associated with remote work options, and employers are experiencing a widespread demand for flexible options, all increasing the likelihood that telework will remain the new normal.

Along with the implementation of a remote workforce comes the challenges of managing them. One potential problem can be productivity. While studies have shown that remote workers tend to be more productive than their co-located peers, consistency in productivity can suffer if not appropriately managed.


Combining Structured and Unstructured Working Hours

Set Expectations for Remote Employees Contrary to the prevalent ideology that strictly structured task management equals productivity, more modern managers have realized that blending structured office hours and unstructured time can increase productivity and ingenuity.

Leaders should schedule set office hours for employees to be available to work on day-to-day tasks like checking emails, attending meetings, and other typical job-related activities. Take into consideration time zones and schedule these mandatory office hours to best suit the entire team. This type of scheduling facilitates productivity by allowing time for collaboration, having clear expectations for work times, and encourage team behaviors and bonding.

In addition to structured work hours, managers should allow remote workers time to explore new ideas and work on special projects. While it can be difficult at first to get used to the idea of allowing free time, and in fact, can strike you as counterproductive, unstructured work increases creative problem solving, ingenuity, and can inspire mutual trust and loyalty.


Communication and Clear Expectations

Communication for Remote EmployeesAnother challenge to productivity is balancing communication- too much, and team members can feel micro-managed as if they are not trusted. Too little communication can make them feel alienated and unimportant. Managers should establish a daily team check to pass on important information, discuss priorities, assess progress on group projects, and a weekly individual check-in to provide feedback, one-on-one support, and evaluate progress on individually assigned tasks.

Communicating realistic productivity standards and expectations is key to achieving optimal productivity in your remote workers. After all, even the best employees can’t read minds, and it is impossible to be in constant contact with every member of your team, no matter if they are teleworking or collocated with you. Productivity goals should be communicated and assessed frequently to ensure employees have enough work to be engaged but not so much that they are overwhelmed.


Encourage Breaks and Adherence to Quitting Times

Encourage Breaks for Remote Employees         Employee burnout can be another barrier to consistent productivity. Workers in an office environment have more structure than their remote coworkers and typically take their breaks and have time to socialize with their coworkers, and when it is quitting time, they clock out and go home. When you work from home, your office is where you live, there is a lack of fundamental social interactions, and the lines between work and home life can blur.

Remote workers frequently report that they forget to take breaks and have trouble compartmentalizing life and work. Managers should encourage their remote workers to develop healthy boundaries between work and home life. Some ways to support this include:

  • Modeling behavior – Many remote team managers work remotely themselves, at least some of the time. Managers should practice the behaviors they want to boost in their employees. Be sure you are imposing work-life boundaries on your own day as well. If your employees see that you are sending emails after the established working hours, they may feel like it is okay and even necessary to be “always on call” as well.
  • Use time-tracking programs – Time tracking programs can increase productivity by not only letting you know what your employees are doing and when, but it can also help employees understand when to quit working. The act of clocking out can assist in reinforcing that work-life barrier.


Outsourcing for your remote teams with Liberty Source gives your business the benefits of teleworking while also ensuring skilled leaders manage that team. Liberty Source has a track record for efficiently managing remote teams and increasing productivity.

Liberty Source has a unique workforce consisting of military spouses who experience frequent moves. Liberty Source has long utilized teleworking to retain and hire the best-qualified employees, giving us the expertise needed to maintain productivity during the recent pandemic and beyond.

Managing a Remote Workforce – a Four Part Series


Managing a Remote Workforce – a Four Part Series

Part One – History, Benefits, and Challenges 

The recent Covid-19 pandemic has emphasized the absolute need for businesses to have the agility and capabilities for employees to work from home. Remote work is quickly becoming the new normal, permanently changing the business landscape. We’ve now moved out of the grieving phase of this pandemic and are settling into accepting the virtual-first environment. Businesses who are resistant to shifting to permanent remote workforce options will likely be left behind. As remote work gains popularity leaders must understand the unique challenges that go along with managing that workforce and the approach that will enable success.

A Brief History:

Throughout most of history, almost all work was remote work. A person farmed, created goods, wrote, and more from their homes and consumers came to them. It wasn’t until the industrial revolution that work shifted from homes to factories as the work necessitated physical labor consolidated in one building.

Shortly after WWII the US economy was gaining momentum. There was an increase in corporate office buildings; the cubicle was invented, as well as the eight-hour workday. At this point, remote work came in an unexpected form. Women, who had been active in the workforce during the war, were now expected to be regulated back to their roles as housewives. Brownie Wise, a former sales person for Stanley Home cleaning products, recognized this as an opportunity and created the “patio party” to sell Tupperware, empowering women with flexible jobs and creating the in-home sales industry.

The advancement of technology once again began a shift in the workplace, including the business services outsourcing industry. Typically, traditional outsourcing firms require employees to commute to a service delivery center(s) and work from home options are only available for top executives. The buzz that ‘the future of work’ will revolutionize how the sourcing industry operates gained momentum over the past five years, with businesses slowly overcoming antiquated ways to conduct business. However, COVID-19 accelerated this and we are now in a virtual-first era. Automation has made jobs less physically demanding, and personal computers have increased the number of careers available in office based work like data analysis, project management, and finance and accounting. The invention and unprecedented mass access to reliable internet and Wi-Fi has given workers the flexibility needed to do their jobs from home, at the local coffee shop, while traveling, or even while relaxing at the beach.

The Benefits:

Savvy businesses have been embracing the idea of a remote and flexible workforce. In fact, in 2019, 66% of companies allowed remote work and 16% were fully remote. That statistic is now much higher. Leaders are recognizing the many benefits, including lower costs, increased productivity, higher employee morale, and attracting and maintaining more highly skilled workers.

  • Lower Costs – One of the most enticing aspects of having a remote workforce, and is the lower cost of doing business. On average, by remote outsourcing your key business processes you save up to 70% on overhead costs like office space, utilities, and equipment.
  • Increased Productivity – A recent study from Stanford showed a productivity boost among the telecommuters equivalent to a full day’s work. In addition, employee attrition decreased by 50 percent among the telecommuters, they took shorter breaks, had fewer sick days, and took less time off. Employees who work from home are more likely to work a true full-shift versus being late to the office or leaving early. Employees also reported there were less distractions and found it easier to concentrate at home than at the office.
  • Higher Employee Morale – Employees who are able to telecommute report higher levels of job satisfaction, feelings that they are important to their organization and have their voices heard, and a better work-life balance. By cutting out commute times employees have more time to spend with their families and actually save money, creating an overall better quality of life.
  • Attracting and Maintaining More Highly Skilled Workers – According to Pew Research, millennials recently became the largest segment of the workforce in the U.S., surpassing Gen Xers in 2016. While older generations tend to see telecommuting as a perk, millennials are increasingly demanding flexible work schedules to achieve a better work-life balance. According to a study by Owl Labs remote workers surveyed said they’re likely to stay in their current job for the next five years 13% more than on-site workers did.

In addition, a remote workforce can address and make positive changes to social and environmental issues. Female teleworkers tend to have higher salaries than traditional office workers as well as more opportunities for promotions, narrowing the gender pay gap. Having remote teams removes the barrier of geographical location, creating opportunities for a more diverse workforce. Teleworking also eliminates the daily commute, reducing carbon emissions and decreases the amount of paper used in favor of digital platforms.

The Challenges:

While teleworking has many benefits for both businesses and employees, managing a remote workforce also has unique challenges that must be addressed to be successful.

One of the most problematic challenges of managing a remote workforce is lack of engagement. Remote workers can feel left out of company life and culture. It is important for leaders at all levels to make sure employees feel part of the team and it is even more crucial for remote workers who do not have the opportunities for the day to day interactions that normally occur and create bonds that would encourage teamwork.

Another challenge facing remote workers is productivity. Even though overall, productivity is increased when employees work from home there can be issues keeping productivity consistent. Managers need to make sure employees have clear guidelines regarding productivity standards and expectations.

Lastly, remote workers may lack the tools for success that are available to traditional employees. From a dedicated workplace to time management and access to standard office equipment as well as opportunities for training and team building, it is vital that leaders take the time upfront to equip their employees with all the tools needed to be successful.

Implementing and managing a remote workforce can be a time consuming venture. Your business may decide to partner with an outsourcing company that is already experienced in managing a remote workforce. Liberty Source has proven its ability to leverage a remote workforce. Our skilled employees are motivated, engaged, and productive. They have the tools needed for success at their disposal and are eager to put their skills to work for you. Part two will go in-depth into each problem that managers and leaders face and how to effectively remedy the challenges in a modern and unique way.


Read part two here.

Liberty Source