When the COVID-19 pandemic happened, social distancing was the top priority of most companies around the world. They were forced to get creative in coming up with ways to continue working. But they have to do so while keeping their employees safe from the coronavirus. Since then, there’s been a staggering rise of employees working from home. But even before the pandemic started, remote working is not at all new. Virtual companies around the world have been rising years before the pandemic started.
Back in 2018, Owl Labs surveyed global virtual companies. The researchers found that 56 percent of global companies are conducting a remote working setup for many of their employees around the world. Another finding is that 52 percent of the worldwide workforce are doing some remote work once a week.
It’s been many months since the pandemic started, and the remote working setup rose. At this point, many companies are used to this setup. But international virtual companies take it up a notch by employing workers from other parts of the world. As the boss of one such company, here’s how you can deal with the challenges.
One of the things that applicants look for in companies is the facilities or other things they can use. Are the offices clean and modern-looking? Are the computers and other technological devices in top shape? Such things would help them do their jobs easier. But this isn’t the case for virtual companies. A United States-based employer can’t just send a work laptop to an employee in, say, Hong Kong.
But there are ways to work around this issue. Instead of trying to provide hardware support for your employees, consider software support instead. You can invest in a proper fileserver cloud. This is so that your employees can always easily access office files that will help them with work. Where they are around the world won’t matter. If you hired a graphic artist, make sure that they have proper access to the latest versions of Adobe Creative Cloud and other software for creatives.
Apart from the software they’ll need for work, you can also offer perks that they can enjoy. An example is a subscription to online courses such as Skillshare. This way, they can enjoy exploring their interests. In turn, they’ll also enjoy being employed by your virtual company.
The beauty of international virtual companies is that you get to work with people on the other side of the world. But the hard part is dealing with the time differences. Yes, many companies enforce a strict work schedule. This means that many employees are working graveyard shifts. This may not be a problem for some. But it certainly is for others.
A study on nurses working the night shift was conducted back in 2018. The results show that these nurses experience low social support, sleep deprivation, high turnover rates, and many other symptoms of burnout syndrome.
To prevent such negative impacts on your employees, consider implementing flexible work hours. Focus on being output-driven. Set your virtual meetings during a time when it’s most convenient for everyone. This way, your employees can do their work when they’re most active and alert. This, in turn, would result in a higher rate of efficiency and better quality of work.
Another perk of virtual companies is that you get to work with people from other cultures. You’d get to have a diverse set of employees. They bring in fresh and rich perspectives to your team. It’s especially beneficial if your company is all about producing creative output such as graphic design, commercials, etc. Your diverse employees can bring to the table works of art influenced by their own cultural background.
But because of this diversity, it’s crucial to make sure that everyone in your company respects each other. One way to ensure this is by enhancing the camaraderie between your employees. Make sure that you have virtual team-building exercises. You can play games, hold Zoom parties, and even maintain a non-work-related group chat where everyone can talk freely.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual companies are becoming all the rage. Yes, other companies still prefer setting up in a physical office. But many others have seen the potential and the benefits of keeping a virtual company. So, at this point, it won’t be surprising to say that virtual companies are the future of many industries. By knowing now how to maintain such a company will put you ahead of this advancement in business.