Let’s admit it; staying productive while working remotely can be quite challenging. Distractions lurk at every corner and are more overpowering due to a lack of supervision.
The freedom and flexibility that remote work offers can tempt your remote workers away from productivity as they engage in activities unrelated to work.
A good system to track remote employee time helps to record the time employees spend on productive work and analyzes their overall performance. However, it should be implemented in a way that the remote team does not perceive it as a restraint on them.
Since remote workers will be skeptical when you introduce the idea of time tracking to them, it’s important that you create the process in a manner that dispels any fear your employees may have that they are being spied on.
In this guide, we outline a 5-step strategy on how to make the time-tracking process for remote teams successful. Let’s dive in!
Explain the need for time tracking
When running a company, one of the most important achievements you can enjoy is the ability to maintain trust between you and your employees. Do not let your words or actions betray you by making employees think you are implementing time tracking to spy on them.
Explain to them how implementing time tracking will bring accurate cost management, which will then increase profitability. Remind them that if the business prospers, they too shall prosper as a result.
Remind them that delegating tasks will be simple through setting up a time tracking software and that you will give them workloads that suit their skills.
Communicating will motivate your remote team because they will feel you have their interests at heart.
Install a reliable time tracking software tool
Conduct proper market research prior to picking a time tracking software. All the time tracking features should be easily accessible to help your remote employees monitor their progress and take action to be more productive.
We highly recommend using a cloud-based time tracking software for your employees to log in as they work remotely. Gradually, employees will see the flexibility of time tracking software and this will help them stay more accountable.
Teach employees how to track their time
Hold virtual sessions where you train your remote team on how to log their hours and what types of devices they can use to log in.
Since no two people learn at the same pace, be understanding to those who don’t learn fast and allow time for adjustment once training is over. An adjustment period will allow remote workers to transition smoothly to time tracking.
Do not have unrealistic expectations of your workers during the implementation stage as it may cause anxiety among your employees. Let them gradually warm up to the tracking process while you continue monitoring their progress.
Reward diligent employees
Your employees are not shareholders in your business. This means they might not fully accommodate the idea of time tracking.
You have to find a way to make the time tracking process inviting by creating a reward system. Reward those who adhere to it consistently without compromising the quality of their work.
If they complete a project before the deadline, you can give them bonuses or you can let them leave work early or take a day off. They will feel appreciated and be motivated to use their time productively.
Employees will embrace a new behavior, such as time-tracking if being successful in that area is linked to rewards.
Collect employee feedback
Now that you have implemented a time tracking system, it’s time to ask your employees for feedback. This will give you insight into whether employees are benefitting or not.
An easy way to get employee feedback is to create surveys and have your remote team fill them out without revealing their identity. This way, you will get their true opinions on the time tracking system.
You can also get feedback by holding virtual meetings and brainstorming possible ways to make the time tracking process more efficient.
Keep an open mind during the brainstorming sessions by carefully considering their suggestions. This will build a level of understanding between you and your remote team.
Tracking the time spent by your remote team on their tasks may seem like a daunting task, but you can create that process and implement it seamlessly.
The first step is to have a virtual meeting with your remote team and introduce to them the idea of using a time tracking system. Follow this up by installing a time tracking software and teaching them how to use it to track their time.
You can reward workers who adhere to the time tracking software without compromising their quality of work.
After you have implemented the time tracking software, get feedback from your employees on what can be done better to improve the time tracking process.