Hosting a remote team in your workplace can bring with it a whole host of benefits like increased employee satisfaction and productivity, cutting out stressful commutes, and encouraging more personal time with loved ones and friends. One problem that remains unaddressed by too many employers of remote teams is that their employees often feel isolated or like they’re not part of the team. With a few simple steps, you can make them feel more included and valued.

Making Your Remote Team Members Feel Like Part of the Team

Employees feeling isolated and disconnected from the workplace culture that they’ve grown accustomed to is one of the biggest problems that plague businesses hosting remote workforces, but can be easily solved through simple communication and creativity.

Starting regular workplace traditions like weekly video conferences is a great way to get everybody involved and communicating with one another, which will increase their likelihood of collaborating internally and make team members feel more involved and included. During these traditions, be sure to ask questions, ensure equal talk time among employees, and be attentive in order to make all employees, remote or not, feel like they’re an important part of what makes your teamwork. These can be easily arranged in Google Hangouts Meet, Vonage Business, or any other solution you are comfortable with. GitLab accomplished this with their more than 200 remote team members through “virtual coffee breaks”, which encourages members to video chat and socialize with each other during breaks.

It’s important to open consistent lines of communication between you and your employees and encourage communication and conversation between other team members. This can be done more easily than ever before through voice, text, and video chat features implemented in common workplace productivity suites like Hangouts Meet in Google Cloud’s G Suite. Workplace productivity platforms also offer the unique chance for employees to collaborate in real time, allowing them to work in unison and create high-quality work that involves all relevant employees, building stronger workplace relationships and encouraging further communication between team members.

Other strategies include encouraging the use of workplace-based communication platforms like Slack, which allows for both general conversation and work-geared talk. Celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and milestones in the same way you would with non-remote employees. If it’s possible for your organization, arrange for quarterly or annual meet-ups in person or attendance of an industry event that will allow your employees to connect with each other, to get out of their home offices, and to create stronger bonds with one another. If a company-wide meetup isn’t possible, try arranging for smaller scale region-based meetups that will allow your employees to meet and connect without breaking the company’s budget. A number of companies like Buffer and Octane AI have made remote employee meetups a part of their annual traditions, bringing employees together in retreat-style events to facilitate closer bonds.

Use Modern Workplace Technology to Your Advantage

Workplaces have better access to real-time collaborative platforms, communication tools, and workplace management software than ever before - any organization hosting a remote work team should be taking advantage of this. Teams working in text documents and spreadsheets, creating presentations, storing files and data in the cloud, and connecting with clients and other employees through email should be using G Suite, the cloud-based productivity suite that allows your team to work together in unison, to work smarter through a bevy of seamless implementations, and increase workplace productivity.

Customer relationship management (CRM) solutions can allow your employees to store vital customer data that can be accessed across your entire team, allowing everybody to get on the same page and helping to automate business processes within your organization. For employers and managers who are concerned about the performance and productivity of their remote teams, business intelligence tools like Prodoscore accurately measure the performance of your employees and assigns them unique “productivity scores”. These scores can allow you to improve business processes, identify and address weaknesses within your team, reward exceptional performance, help you and your team discover new opportunities, and gamify the productivity as a whole amongst your team.

Working to encourage communication and collaboration between all branches of your organization and harnessing the potential of modern workplace tools can bring your team together, and help you to create a much more inclusive and social remote workplace atmosphere for all employees, and increase their satisfaction and effectiveness. For more information on how UpCurve Cloud can help your organization implement a cloud-based unified workflow that will bring your remote work team together, contact us today.