31 October 2017
Would you like to run your business without an office? Here's how to go about it:
Increasing numbers of businesses are managing their company's daily activities remotely. Having a virtual office and therefore no physical office space provides a lot of flexibility on a number of levels. But how can you keep a balance and run your business successfully without an office? This article will tell you all you need to know about remote working.
You already know that the success or failure of your business depends on the people behind it. But if you want to run a company without an office, you ideally need a specific set of skills.
So you should only recruit candidates with a go-getting mentality. You know who we mean: people who aren't afraid to roll their sleeves up and get stuck in, who love taking the initiative and who don't need constant management.
Make sure you appoint people you can trust, but also that you put your trust in people once you have employed them. By which we mean: remember that the point of taking on staff is to reduce your own workload. So don't saddle yourself with the additional burden of micromanaging people and monitoring your team's work.
And obviously, another important thing is to make sure you ask applicants whether they think this way of working will suit them. Not everyone will jump at the chance to work in a company with minimal social contact.
To make a remote-office business work, you also need to have a number of processes in place. A team of go-getters there usually has a sense of responsibility. This will happen almost automatically once you've established a common vision. So ensure that everyone knows the business's current position and where it is heading.
ING would also advise you to plan-in fixed practices and routines. Not only because time management is the key to efficient working, but also to keep your remote office practicable.
For example, hold weekly and/or daily meetings with the team, and do so at specific times. That way you will also get to know your staff better, even if you don't work together very often.
Anyone who has a 'remote working policy' knows that tools are of vital importance.
Firstly, there are software solutions that make it easier to work together. There's no need to hold meetings over the phone nowadays, because for tools like Skype, Google Hangouts and Appear.in all you need is an internet connection. CRM software also helps you to manage and keep track of your customers and their projects. Trello is another well-known online tool for agile project management that integrates seamlessly with professional chat tools such as Slack.
There are also a number of administrative solutions that make teamwork much easier. Have you already heard of HelloSign, for example? This application allows you to sign important documents and send them on to your colleagues and/or partners in an instant. And don't forget: you can use an invoicing tool such as ING Invoice Solutions. ING Invoice Solutions is a must-have for the financial management of your company.