During the past year, many companies were forced to send their workers home due to the health crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although this shift to remote working allowed many businesses to carry on working, some teams were not ready for such a drastic change.

This new dynamic has directly affected how business owners and team managers supervise their remote workers. In many cases, supervisors make the crucial mistake of micromanaging their remote workers. A better alternative to managing remote teams is using effective and balanced overcommunication techniques.

We understand that mastering the art of monitoring productivity without micromanaging can be particularly challenging. Nevertheless, when done correctly, overcommunication is a simple yet effective way of keeping everybody in the loop.

Both your company and your remote workers can benefit from a healthy back and forth. However, we know that balancing overcommunication can be tricky. Luckily, we have crafted this list of five key tips to manage overcommunication with your remote team.

remote research

Feedback & Communication

The best way to make sure that you don’t overwhelm your remote workers with constant update demands and unnecessary calls is by encouraging them to be forthcoming and contact you. In order to do so you should focus on how to nurture a feedback culture.

You can get your remote workers involved and avoid any negative overcommunication issues by asking them to fill out a feedback survey. This long-distance update method is perfect to establish a balanced flow of communication between managers and workers. 

Feedback surveys should definitely help you get overcommunication right, without overwhelming your remote workers with constant calls, emails, and meetings.

In terms of collaboration, teamwork, and overcommunication, it is essential to nurture a truly collaborative remote working environment. Using collaborative tools like shared calendars to check on deadlines and manage your projects’ progress can help you avoid having to ask for unnecessary updates.

In this regard, using collaborative tools that enable team members to share information instantly can accidentally contribute to overcommunication.  To avoid this, set boundaries with your teams and set-up other virtual workspaces like a project management board or set-up a separate group chat where employees can socialize freely without accidentally clogging your work chats.  

It’s also important to note that these UCaaS systems include safety protocols like VPC (Virtual Private Clouds) cybersecurity measures. These clouds offer users a unique private IP subnet, as well as the possibility to run code, store data, and host websites in a private cloud that is contained in a bigger public cloud.

Train Remote Workers

Having a well-prepared remote workforce will reduce the need to keep a constant eye on projects, ask for continuous updates, and micromanage every single task. Put simply, the best way to balance overcommunication is by training remote workers so that they are self-dependent.

This will not only free your schedule as a team manager, but it will also make your staff members feel trusted and be more reliable. If you want to achieve such goals, you should start by systematically and thoughtfully onboarding new employees. 

Training new workers is essential if you want them to learn new skills like using the NATO alphabet, following cloud cybersecurity protocols, or mastering automated marketing.

The best way to balance overcommunication is to create an effective training video for employees. Using onboarding videos and tutorials is an excellent way of avoiding having to explain the same things over and over again. Just create the video and send it when necessary. That way, you can avoid approaching overcommunication wrong.

Focus on The Product, Not The Workers

As we have previously mentioned, remote employees do not like it when their supervisors micromanage their work. Sometimes, managers obsess with the idea of overcommunication when they should be worrying about their product instead of their workforce.

The best way to ensure high quality products, especially when it comes to digital products, is implementing QA testing. You can ensure that your product is the best it can be if you implement automated continuous integration during all stages of the production process, from design to sales and marketing. 

This way you eliminate any possible chances of human error and streamline the production process, boosting efficiency, and reducing friction with your remote employees.

Keep it Casual

The past year has been incredibly challenging for all of us. During 2020, anxiety and stress levels have skyrocketed. According to a survey conducted by Statista, over half of remote workers in the US stated that they felt more stressed in June of 2020, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

27% of workers reported no change in stress levels. 21.5% of workers reported feeling less stressed. 51.4% of workers reported feeling more stressed.
Source: Statista

This sudden rise in anxiety levels can affect your workers, which has a direct effect on their ability to manage tasks, meet deadlines, and, most importantly, communicate with one another. For this reason, it is essential to keep morale high during these challenging times.

If you want to nurture collaboration and build a strong team of remote workers, you should consider motivating your teams to participate in virtual team building activities such as virtual escape rooms, non-work-related quizzes, and karaoke nights.

These activities are an excellent way of keeping your remote employees connected and communicating, whilst taking work off their minds. Remember: A happy worker is a productive worker! If you follow these and all our previous tips you will be able to balance overcommunication like a true leader, keeping everybody in the loop without micromanaging.

Invest in Remote Management Tools

You can avoid micromanaging, too, by simply investing in high quality remote employee productivity monitoring software. These software solutions can help you track your employees’ efficiency and progress without having to ask for constant updates. These types of tools can be very useful for tracking the progress of web designers, marketers, and sales representatives, for example.

However, keeping a distant eye on other departments’ progress can be a little trickier. In the case of customer service remote employees, for example, you can check their call records in order to see how many calls they take or how long their calls are. Having a look at their call history is a good way of managing them without having to communicate with them directly.

Using these tools is an excellent way of balancing overcommunication, since both parties (the supervisor and the employees) are indirectly communicating without any uncomfortable micromanaging.

Workpuls Teramind ActivTrak Hubstaff DeskTime Time Doctor RescueTime Kickidler Veriato Work Examiner
Price $6/user/month $6/user/month $7.20/user/month $7/user/month $7/user/month $9.99/user/month $6/user/month $9.99/user/month $150/licence/year $60/licence (lifetime)
Free trial 7 days 7 days No 14 days 14 days 14 days 30 days 7 days Yes 30 days
Ease of use Very easy Difficult Very easy Easy Easy Very easy Very easy Very easy Very difficult Easy
Unlimited (tracker working 24/7)
Fixed (defined working hours)
Automatic (when computer is connected to a specified network)
Manual (start/stop)
Project based (track time only on projects)
Stealth mode
App and website usage
Real-time monitoring
Offline time tracking
Activity levels
Remote desktop control
Website/activity blocking
Screenshots on demand
Screen recording
Productivity trends
Websites and apps labeling
Category labeling
Productivity alerts
User behavior analytics
Data loss prevention
Advanced file and web monitoring
Productivity reports
Team reports
Email reports
Access management
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app
Mobile app iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android iOS, Android Android
Browser extension Chrome Chrome Chrome
Other Citrix, VMware Chrome OS
Support Phone, email, online Phone, email, online Phone, email, online Email, online Phone, email, online, in-person Online Phone, email, online Email, online, Viber, Whatsapp Phone, email, online, support ticket Phone, email, online
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Integrations comming soon
Deployment cloud, on-premise cloud, on-premise, AWS, Azure cloud cloud cloud cloud cloud on-premise cloud, on-premise on-premise
Kronos Humanity Timeclockplus Tsheets Wheniwork Deputy Replicon Jibble EbilityTimeTracker OnTheClock BeeBole
Price(per month)Available upon requestFrom $2 per userAvailable upon requestFrom $6.40 per user+$16Free for up to 75 usersFrom $2.50 per userBasic plan:$30 for 5 users+$5 per additional userFrom $1.50 per employeeFrom $4 per user+$8From $2.20 per user$5.99 per user per month
Free trial30 days14 daysYes14 days14 days14 days30 days30 days,no credit card required
Ease of useDifficultEasyDifficultVery easyEasyEasyDifficultVery easyEasyEasyEasy
Timecard management
Shift Trading
Break time management
Real-time tracking
PTO Management
Client billing
GPS tracking
Clock out reminders
Manual time
Web app
Mobile app
Time clock device
Time clock kiosk
Facial recognition
Fingerprint scanning
Group punch-in
Visual reports
Email reports
Time rounding
Manager approvals
Add time for others
Android app
iOS app
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app
SupportPhone and onlinePhone and onlinePhone,chat and onlinePhone and chatEmail and onlineChat and phonePhone,email,chat and onlinePhone and onlinePhone,email,chat and onlinePhone and onlineOnline chat and video support in English,French,and Spanish
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Community forum
Workpuls Hubstaff Toggl TimeDoctor Harvest TimeCamp Timely Everhour Tick TMetric
Price (per month) $6 per user $5.83 per user $9 per user $9.99 per user $10.80 per user $5.25 per user $99 for 5 users $7 per user $19 for 10 projects $5 per user
Free trial 7 days 14 days 30 days 14 days 30 days Yes 14 days 14 days 30 days 30 days
Ease of use Very easy Difficult Difficult Very easy Easy Very easy Easy Difficult Very easy Difficult
Start/stop buttons
Automatic time mapping
App and website usage
Activity levels coming soon
Real-time tracking
Project adding
Project templates
Project status
Task assignment
Task priorities
Budgeting coming soon
Mark billable/non-billable hours
Payroll calculation
Idle time reminders
Deadline alerts coming soon
Budget alerts coming soon
Client login
Productivity analysis
Email reports coming soon
Mac desktop app
Windows desktop app
Linux desktop app coming soon
iOS app Beta
Android app
Browser extension Chrome Chrome, Firefox Chrome Chrome Chrome, Firefox Chrome Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Edge
Support Phone and online Email and online Email and online Online Online, email and phone Email, online and support ticket Email and chat Email and chat Email Chat
Knowledge base
Video tutorials
Integrations coming soon
On-premise hosting
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