Outsourcing services to a virtual team is an effective way of improving your bottom-line. Not only can you reduce operating costs but you can enhance the quality of work and deliverables.
But problems due to miscommunication, cultural and social nuances can happen and hinder the productivity of your virtual team.
Here are 5 ways on how you can successfully outsource services to your virtual team:
Identifying Your Purpose for Outsourcing Services. If you cannot identify your purpose for outsourcing services, your virtual team may not achieve its intended goals and objectives.
Why? Because purpose determines direction; it is the “why” of your business. Your purpose for outsourcing services could range from reducing costs to improving productivity to introducing business flexibility.
Purpose helps you establish the guidelines and benchmarks for your virtual team:
- What skills should form my virtual team?
- What programs and hardware do I need to support the virtual team?
- What frameworks and processes do I need to run the system?
- How much should I allocate to fund my virtual team?
- What is a realistic ROI to validate my virtual team?
Define the Qualities and Parameters of the Virtual Team. When you have identified the services you wish to outsource, it is time to shift your focus on the details regarding the virtual team.
For example, if you plan to outsource digital marketing services you could come up with a short list of qualifications for the virtual team members:
- Digital marketing skills needed
- Website Development
- Social media marketing
- Content writing
- Proficiency Levels
- Years of Experience
- Body of Work
- Work Ethics
- Due Dilligence Check
- Character References
Define the Work Culture of the Team. It doesn’t matter if your methods have assembled what seems on paper to be the “best of the best”. If the team cannot work together, your virtual team will fail to accomplish its purpose.
As the business owner, you should establish the culture of the team. Share with the team members your ideas on what an ideal work culture should be to generate maximum productivity. Allow the team members to share their ideas as well.
The object is to arrive at a consensus as to what constitutes a productive work culture. Then hold everyone accountable to it.
Discuss the Scope of Work. Once you have assembled your virtual team, give each member their respective key areas of responsibilities. Go over the scope of work individually then discuss with the team how these responsibilities should come together to help accomplish its purpose.
This way, you are able to communicate your expectations and clear out any misunderstanding on the required tasks.
Schedule Regular Meetings. Technology has made it possible to connect and communicate with everyone on the virtual team. It is important to stay in close communication because working through the virtual world puts constraints on collaboration.
You can schedule meetings every start and end of the week. The purpose of the regular meetings is to make sure everyone is on the same page and updated on all current developments.
There are clear challenges to working with a virtual team. But these challenges can be overcome simply by establishing clear work flows and guidelines to address potential problems before they happen.