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How To Banish Your Brick-And-Mortar Business And Go All-In Digital

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By now, it should be obvious that you don’t have to have close quarters and cubicles to make a business work. In the IT industry especially, the vast majority of jobs are easily handled from the homes of those you employ. But if you’ve never put together a remote team of workers, there are a few things to do to streamline the process.

 

Start with the basics.

Finding your remote staff is not the first step in creating a remote workforce. It helps to start by knowing your business and ensuring that it is structured to offer you the most personal liability protection. Do your research and decide on a business structure. For many, this means forming an LLC. When you have a remote team of workers, you’ll appreciate how an LLC removes some personal liability if an employee — or customer — pulls you into court for any reason. With this in mind, it’s definitely worth finding out how to start an LLC in Alabama.

Next, draft a job description that clearly outlines your expectations. Will your staff be 100% remote? If not, where are they required to meet in person? Will this take place at your home or in a co-working space? If you expect your workers to have their own equipment, such as a computer, extra monitors, and headset, this should also be clearly stated in the initial job advertisement.

Once you have a list of candidates together, do a background check. Keep in mind, however, that you will need to let your future employees know this ahead of time since the Fair Credit Reporting Act requires informed consent if anything found in their history will affect whether or not they get the job. More importantly, you should also know that different states have different regulations, so do your research here, as well, especially if you plan to hire across state lines.

Decide on your tools.

Your next major milestone on the road toward having a remote workforce is to know the tools that you plan to use to make it a success. Many in the IT field choose to learn Agile Project Methodology, which Perforce explains offers workflow flexibility, particularly for complex projects.

You also want to make sure that each of your workers downloads your communication software of choice. Slack is the software that comes to mind here (though there are certainly others). It allows you to create multiple channels for each project so that relevant individuals can quickly reach out to their team in a space dedicated only to that project.

If you require that your employees have a certain operating system, internet speed, or hardware/software, you want to factor in all of these before you make your first hire. Unless you plan to utilize an entirely freelance workforce, you may be expected to provide the tools and equipment your staff needs, just as you would at the office. You may also be expected to compensate them for their internet and home office space. Make these decisions now so that there is no question of your versus their responsibility during the onboarding process.

Having a remote workforce is one of the most cost-effective ways to run a business. It allows you to not only choose from a global talent pool but also to offer your employees flexibility and autonomy — both things Monster asserts are important to workers today. However, it is not as simple as choosing your workers and telling them to get started. If you want to make your work-at-home endeavors successful across your organization, you have to prepare. Start with the basics, and then build your remote empire one new hire at a time.

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