Navigating the Challenges of Building and Managing Remote IT Teams

Remote hiring has become the first choice of recruiters and remote working is the first choice of employees. Remote hiring and working gained massive popularity after the COVID-19 pandemic. As everyone was locked in their home due to lockdown there was no choice but to work remotely and hire a virtual team.

By the end of 2023, it is projected that approximately a quarter (25%) of professionals will embrace remote work. Furthermore, experts have made predictions that by 2025, a staggering 36 million Americans will be engaged in remote work, marking a remarkable 417% surge compared to the levels observed before the pandemic.

How a remote IT team is beneficial


1. More agile team –


One of the key benefits of having a virtual team is that it provides agility. Virtual teams are more adaptable and flexible to the changing requirements of customers. Remote IT teams can adopt automated testing frameworks, continuous integration servers, and code review tools to maintain code quality and catch issues early.


2. Faster hiring process –


Virtual teams also known as distributed teams provide the advantage of faster hiring of employees. After hiring skilled remote employees and building an efficient team out of it, virtual teams start working quickly and efficiently. Having a virtual team eliminates the time-consuming process of relocating employees, finding the right accommodation, processes like visa approval or anything else.


3. Diverse perspectives and skills –


Virtual teams of IT professionals have diverse perspectives and they bring creativity, fresh ideas and innovation to work. As there are no location boundaries, a virtual team consisting of skilled people belonging to different cultures come together and bring the best results for the company with their experience and expertise.


4. Business continuity –


In cases like natural disasters, pandemics, or any situation in which it becomes impossible for the person to get out of the house, the virtual teams work seamlessly. Virtual teams work from anywhere with their full potential for the company without disrupting organizational operations for any reason.

5.Geographical independence –


Virtual teams ( distributed teams ) have geographical independence providing individuals with an expertise skill set. Companies can expand their virtual teams without considering office size or bearing the extra cost of expansion. So we can say it leads to saving costs for the company.


Challenges in building and managing a remote IT team


Virtual teams offer much more benefits but virtual team building is not easy, It has its own set of challenges. One of the most important and challenging parts of having a virtual team is managing virtual teams in the best way possible. Let’s understand.


1. Working across different time zones –


A virtual team may consist of employees from different countries and different time zones.
Before arranging meetings it becomes important to consider the time zone of the employee so they won’t miss any important discussion or opportunity. While managing virtual teams and virtual team building it becomes necessary to look at such things and make a decision accordingly.


2. Building trust and engagement –


Having a highly engaged team and virtual team members trusting each other can only be an assumption. Managing remote teams and virtual team building is challenging and to run a successful business building trust among virtual team members is an essential part. Making transparency an important part of a company and having a streamlined onboarding process can help to have a highly engaged virtual team.


3. Clear expectations from the remote team –


One of the challenges in managing remote teams and virtual team building is transparency. Setting clear expectations about work and tasks for every team member of a virtual team turned out to be beneficial in the long run. Not just in terms of work but also about the goals and values of the company setting clear expectations is always nice while managing remote teams.


4. Overcoming cultural difficulties –


While managing remote teams, overcoming cultural differences among team members is important. A virtual team includes different people who work from their place with different cultures and mindsets which can be a positive factor. But keep in mind that they can also have different viewpoints on collaboration. While managing remote teams, considering this cultural difference point is important.


5. Tracking team productivity –


In the case of an onboarding team if any team member is in trouble while handling any project then we can spot it at a glance and help them out. In the case of a virtual team, it’s not possible. So even if a virtual team is completing a project at a time it’s always better to keep checking on them once in a while through virtual meetings. Know that tracking team productivity is one of the key challenges of managing remote teams and virtual team building.


Photo by Jud Mackrill on Unsplash

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