If you are a business owner who hires remote workers, you probably already know that it takes time and effort to manage projects and tasks from workers that do not sit in an office right down the hall. While remote workers offer many benefits, they also require a different level of communication and monitoring because they may work across the globe from each other. If your company is growing, you may be wondering when is the right time to hire a project manager to supervise remote workers and projects so that you can focus on the growth of your business.
A remote project manager is not much different than a regular project manager. It is a person who has the overall responsibility for the successful initiation, planning, execution, and closure of a project. Ultimately, the project manager is responsible for the success or failure of the project. A remote project manager will still have this role.
The only difference is that this project manager will manage remote workers instead of managing workers in an office setting. While the job and responsibilities are the same, a remote project manager will need a slightly different approach to successfully manage projects performed by people working remotely.
Balance Schedule Inconvenience
Remote workers are likely going to cover multiple time zones. Having workers across the globe is one of the advantages of hiring remote workers. However, it means that these project managers are going to have to communicate with workers at all hours of the day. They will have to accommodate schedules from every individual. Remote project managers will have to utilize multiple communication methods strategically depending on the need of the individual project.
Set Clear Expectations
Remote work is far less structured than on-site work which means that project managers will have to provide more structured expectations than might be required in an office setting. All workers should have a crystal clear picture of what they are supposed to accomplish, which tasks they own individually, when they need to finish each task, and whom to go to when or if they have issues.
Track Progress Closely
While all project managers absolutely have to stay on top of project progress, a remote project manager will have to stay closer to the project status at all times. With remote workers, projects are more likely to get off track because the workers are not sitting next to each other. A remote project manager will have to closely monitor development and ensure workers are communicating with each other and staying on the right path.
So, how will you know when it is time for your company to invest in a remote project manager? If you have just started your business and don’t have a lot of clients yet, you probably aren’t ready to hire project management resources. You can likely handle it on your own. However, if your company has grown and you are struggling to keep up with all of your incoming project work, it may be time to take the plunge. Some examples when you, as a business owner, may choose to hire a remote project manager are when:
As a small online company grows, it reaches a point where it expands from organized chaos to the point where it absolutely needs a solid business process for sustained growth. It is typically the turning point for a company when they can no longer manage the work on their own and require the assistance of a project manager.
Hiring a remote project manager may be the best strategic growth investment your company can make. A good project manager can take on the responsibility for the projects your company is running and let you focus on the higher level strategy for your business and its growth. A remote project manager will take many tasks off of your plate. He or she will:
Lead remote workers
The project manager will manage work output and deal with any issues that may pop up. He/she will provide guidance and help to workers. You will only be made aware of major problems.
Ensure all projects are on track to finish on time
A project manager will control the project schedule. He/she will break down all of the key milestones and ensure the work is tracking on time. If work is running behind or if issues pop up, the project manager can assign additional help or authorize overtime.
Monitor quality control
Because it is essential that you deliver quality products to your customers, a project manager will oversee all project deliverables to ensure they meet quality requirements and appropriately reflect your company’s standards.
Set up processes and structure
A good remote project manager will set up processes and structure for remote workers, allowing projects to run more efficiently.
As a business owner, it is ultimately your decision whether to hire a project manager to manage virtual workers or continue to run the show yourself. Remote project managers can be a highly valued member of your company and bring structure and success to all of your customers’ needs. Is it time for you to let a qualified person take the reins while you spend your energy and time growing the business?
If you are thinking “yes,” then look no further. FreeUp is an amazing hiring platform to find a reliable project manager who will do everything that was just outlined in this article. You receive 1 on 1 treatment in putting the best project manager in place and have FreeUp support while continuing to hire remote workers.
Melissa Ricker is a nuclear engineer and a professional freelance writer specializing in career growth, digital marketing and online entrepreneurship. She writes about her experiences on her website, Engineered Motherhood.
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