The opportunities for remote employees have increased drastically with many businesses moving towards working from home. As of 2018, 52% of global workers worked from home at least one day a week, and that number is now expected to be much higher due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And with this influx to the market, comes common misconceptions related to remote work.
With offshoring, recruitment, and management of international employees at the cornerstone of Meeko’s business, we want to break down the myths commonly associated with remote employees.
Only big companies can hire remote
While most people associate offshore employees with large customer service centres for big companies, it’s very common for startups and SMEs to seek out remote talent when looking to grow their businesses or streamline operations. According to a report published by Clutch in 2019, more than a third of small businesses outsource part of their operations, with IT services as the second most popular field behind accounting.
In fact, it is a particularly strategic move for small companies to offshore when they are looking to grow while maintaining a lean budget since it allows entrepreneurs to work on their business, not in their business. Rather than being preoccupied with day-to-day administrative tasks or worried about keeping costs lean by maintaining a small amount of staff, business owners and managers can use this time to focus on achieving long-term goals.
Employee management is difficult
For companies that have little to no experience with remote staff, the management of offshore employees can seem daunting. However, with a large majority of the workforce now working from home as well as key advancements in communications technology, there are fewer barriers to entry for businesses looking to outsource.
The surge of platforms such as Google Meet, Zoom, and Teams has made internal communication much easier and more accessible for remote workers. With increased communication comes increased accountability and transparency.
Workers even report to feeling more productive working remotely, with one study by Airtasker revealing that outsourced hires work 1.4 more days per month than those in the office, which translates to roughly 3 extra working weeks in a year. So, while managers may not be able to physically see their staff working, the numbers speak for themselves.
Cultural barriers are hard to overcome
Along with the challenges associated with remote work, individuals may be resistant to offshoring their staff due to cultural differences. By creating a company culture that all employees can relate to, cross-cultural diversity becomes more of a strength as opposed to a weakness.
Cross-cultural teams foster cognitive diversity, which refers to the variety of ways people think and solve problems. With increased perspectives and critical thinkers, companies create engaging environments that encourage individuals to share their unique point of view. (Read some of our top tips on managing international teams in our latest blog here.)
Remote teams are costly
Quite the opposite actually- utilising remote workers is an effective way for companies to save money by saving on office space, additional equipment, utility bills, and travel costs.
Not to mention the savings associated with hiring offshore employees without sacrificing talent. Junior developers in London average £27K for salaries whereas comparable hires in Kyiv, Ukraine cost approximately £10K.
Rather than focusing on the negative misconceptions that may drive someone to dismiss offshoring as an option for the business, it is important for entrepreneurs to understand how remote staff can increase efficiency and decrease costs.
For more information on how Meeko operates differently and grow your business, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.