Pros & Cons: 6 Benefits & Drawbacks Of Having A Team Spread Across Different Time Zones
Building a remote team is a brilliant way to tap into the global talent pool. Get your time zones right, and you can also set yourself up to always have someone on hand to help customers and deal with IT emergencies. Of course, there are a few complications to consider as well. To paint the clearest picture possible, let’s take a look at the main benefits and drawbacks of having a team spread across different time zones:
1. Drawback – No Communal Office Space
Sadly there is no communal working space when you have employees spread across different time zones. The good news is that you can set up a virtual office address and take advantage of video conferencing technology and project management apps to recreate the benefits of a shared office space.
2. Benefit – A Huge Talent Pool
Nearly three-quarters of professionals want remote working to become standard, and who could blame them? Employers gain access to a global pool of talent, breaking down the geographical restrictions they once faced when hiring staff. Employees also benefit as they are able to tap into a global job market. This is invaluable at a time when the global economy is still recovering from the economic challenges of the last few years.
3. Drawback – Organisation Is Difficult
If you’re leading a global team of employees, there does need to be a level of flexibility allowed in order to accommodate different time zones and deadlines. It also takes a really good central calendar and a sense of organization to ensure that everybody is working towards a common goal, despite the separation of space and time.
4. Benefit – Operations Are Running 24/7
Even with a service like a chatbot, nearly 50% of customers still prefer to communicate with businesses through a voice channel. Indeed, chatbots often just end up funneling customers through to human representatives.
If you have employees based across all the different time zones worldwide, your business never has to stop running. This means you can have customers served throughout the day and night, and there is no need to facilitate any out-of-hours shifts or the extra wages that go along with overtime.
5. Drawback – Collaboration Is Tricky
Troubleshooting and discussing ideas can be difficult when a team is spread across multiple time zones. Often, there is no one time that is suitable for everybody on the team. With the right supporting technology, though, you can have a communal online space where ideas can be shared, and everybody can provide input at a time that suits them. Though this certainly is challenging, there’s no need for anybody to be excluded from collaboration – it just may have to be done in a way that differs from traditional team meetings.
6. Benefit – Happier Employees
A recent study showed that remote workers tend to be happier in their jobs because they enjoy lower levels of stress, better focus, and a better work-life balance. Happier employees generally come together to create a more productive, positive, and focused team – even if they’re spread out across the globe.
“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” – Henry Ford
Having a team that is based across multiple time zones does come with its drawbacks. However, with the right approach, technology, and flexibility, you can not only overcome those drawbacks but push your business into a thriving, future-proof rhythm. You can then enjoy the benefits of a global talent pool that is rich with diverse opinions, cultural perspectives, and valuable contributions.