Director of Remote Work – that job title is said to be the hottest new executive-level role to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. I first heard about this trend while listening to a Marketing Companion episode, did some research, and felt like there wasn’t enough content out there to guide businesses on when it does or does not make sense to hire someone full-time to lead their remote efforts at an executive-level salary plus benefits.
First, what does a Director of Remote Work do? This role involves working across multiple teams to ensure that remote employees have a seamless experience with their employer. This means remote workers are supported in areas including corporate culture, operations, technology, mental health, and so on. One way this can help is if you have a hybrid model and your business tends to have an “out of sight, out of mind” culture toward promoting and rewarding remote employees. This singular owner of all things remote would implement changes so everyone gets equal treatment, no matter their location.
Does every company need to hire a Director of Remote Work in order to successfully launch and manage their remote-first workforce strategy? Considering your budget, the size of your company, how established and streamlined your current processes are, and workload capacity – there are options. And it actually may not make sense for your business to jump on the latest trend. Here are the top options for managing your remote workforce.
Hire a Full-time Executive-level Head of Remote Work
First up – cannonballing into the deep end of the hiring pool with an executive-level compensation package to attract top talent. This option is fitting if you are a large corporation or, at a minimum, a medium-sized business. But you need to have the budget and a level of ongoing work needed to support keeping the role on a long-term basis. Without this triad in place, this option will not make sense to pursue. Can you imagine spending $120k on a new employee if your processes are already well-established and you have a team of fewer than 20 people? It just wouldn’t make sense financially. Without all three of these criteria met, you have more flexible and budget-friendly options that would likely be a better fit.
Blend Management of Remote Work into Existing HR Processes
If your company is large enough that you have a team, even if it is a small one, dedicated to human resources, but you do not meet the criteria for onboarding a Director of Remote Work, you may want to consider blending those responsibilities into your existing HR processes. Have your HR pros analyze existing hiring, onboarding and ongoing employee support for areas to improve the remote experience. HR pros are already used to being an advocate for employees, resolving conflicts, working through challenges and communicating important updates company-wide.
Just note that this option may mean hiring a new member of your HR team. Why? To pick up some work that may need to fall off of an existing employee’s workload in order to properly support these new responsibilities.
Disperse Responsibilities of Managing Remote Work Throughout the Organization
Don’t have employees dedicated to HR? You might want to consider baking in the remote-related tasks to all managerial-level roles in your company. This strategy gives you the added perspective of multiple employees becoming your remote workforce’s voice. However, this means a growing number of cooks in the kitchen. That means remaining organized and setting clear expectations on the role each person plays in the initiative will be key to achieving success.
Again, it is important to note that this may mean needing to hire someone. Why? This initiative will naturally deprioritize a portion of your employees’ existing workload. Otherwise, you could face some new HR issues cropping up from employees feeling increased pressure under the new workload expectations. You will also need to be on the lookout for lower performance from some employees. This is a potential outcome of asking employees to remove some of their focus from their role’s core responsibilities.
Partner with a Global Remote-First Staffing Provider
Well, well, well – what do we have here? Oh yes, getting all of this – and potentially more – off your plate so you can focus on growing your business. This solution to your remote workforce management woes involves partnering with a third party, like We Are Working. This allows you to avoid costly executive-level hires while keeping your employees focused on their roles. It is also shockingly cost-effective. We not only have global staff available to work remotely for you, but we can also integrate our proven processes for streamlining, managing, monitoring and coaching remote employees into your current remote workforce strategy.
If this sounds like something that might interest you, let us know! We can help. If you are interested in learning more about our services and what we can do to help your business go remote-first (or just delegate some of your not-so-favorite tasks to us), while saving you time and money, shoot us your questions.