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Remote teams: pros and cons

Updated: Apr 10, 2021

Is working from home lasting forever? That’s a question many people are trying to answer. In my opinion, that’s not the best question to ask, but: how will be the future of work? How will it be in the post-pandemic Era? We are still living in a situation full of uncertainty but is a consensus that the pandemic is pivoting how work is done because it proved that working from home is possible.

Having employees working from home is not new; it was quite common among developers before COVID-19. During social isolation, companies had no choice but to move everyone into working remotely. In most cases, it worked pretty well. This means working from home will get more popular. Indeed, according to Gartner, 48% of employees will work somehow remotely, 19% full remote and 29% sometimes. Today 10% of employees work full remotely and 20% sometimes.

Based on that, my answer to the question is: the future of work will be hybrid and more flexible. I don’t believe offices will shut down either personal meetings. For essential subjects, I agree that meeting in person is a must. All those facts bring us to another point of reflection: when deciding to go remote?


Working from home is no equal to all

Let’s point the pros and cons of having a global team.


Pros

  • Leverage Global talent

There is talent everywhere. Companies can attract talent beyond their cities of origin. More just talent, hiring people from different places can help increasing team diversity.

  • Flexibility is attractive

More than just reaching global talents, companies must be wanted by them. The lack of flexibility is a deal-breaker for many working parents, especially moms.

  • High skilled team for affordable wages

Silicon Valley has one of the highest living costs on the planet. That’s one of the reasons the average salary in the region is crazy high. A Software developer in SF makes twice as one in London, says Glassdoor.

  • Real Estate Costs Saving

As mentioned above, one of the most significant issues of setting a company in cities like New York or Silicon Valley is the high costs and real estate costs are one of the major challenges for setting up an office there. In SF, a desk at a coworking space usually costs between $500 and $700. New York can be as expensive as SF.

  • Reduce time to market

With people working from different time zones is easier and cheaper to serve clients 24/7. When one sleeps, the other works.


Cons

  • All hands team meetings

Having people working from multiple time zones can be an asset, but it can bring some problems when you want to do a team meeting. It is impossible to join in the same zoom call a people in Australia, San Francisco, and London. The solution is to do the same meeting twice or rely on software that records meetings to be shared later.

  • Rely on technology

While working from home, you must have reliable and effective communications tools, as an excellent connection to the internet. Many jobs cannot be done offline today, and working in a team is impossible if people are offline.

  • Social Isolation

As mentioned before, social contact is essential. Not just for taking big decisions, also to keep people engaged and motivated. That coffee during work hours has its value.

  • Lack of engagement

Lack of engagement is a problem but itself because it reduces productivity, which directly impacts profitability. It also can increase turnovers, which are also costly. In the same way, it will be easier to reach talents. Talent competitions will rise, so more companies start adopting a more flexible way of working.


 

Keeping teams engaged and motivated is the biggest challenge while building a virtual team. There are many tools and services to help in solving this pain. A pain that will get bigger when people start working from home more and more. Despite the pains, the pros a vast, don’t you agree? So, tell me, are you willing to hire more remote people?

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