Managing Employees Across Time Zones

Many remote teams schedule their annual get together around a conference. The ideal way to tackle this problem is to hire workers in similar or overlapping time zones. Even if you think you’re on the right track, you may not have enough time to put up ads on job boards or go through lengthy vetting processes to find the right talent. Like Argentina, the time zone in Chile is also 2 hours ahead of EST. While your employees may not be working at exactly the same hours, there’s enough time zone overlap to facilitate collaboration on projects. Based on all of the benefits mentioned above, it’s easy to see how working in similar or overlapping time zones results in higher team productivity. When you hire workers based on time zone overlap, it’s also important to consider the work culture in the respective country.

In working with distributed teams in different time zones, you have to be prepared to be flexible, accommodating and always on top of changing clocks, global holidays and miscalculations. When working within different time zones, it is very important to be mindful of your teammates’ time zone. You should avoid scheduling meetings during the times that you know everyone will not be awake, but this isn’t always possible if you work with people across multiple continents. If you do need to schedule something during off-hours, check first to make sure it is okay. So it’s fair to rotate meeting times between time zones every month or quarter.

Leverage Tools To Help With Time Zone Management

We can only imagine what these numbers mean for distributed teams that need to put extra effort into planning a perfect schedule that won’t disturb the regular work and sleep schedules of the people involved. Speaking of connection among teammates, working across time zones makes it almost impossible to keep the team spirit and social engagement up. Almost by definition, remote work tends to facilitate working across time zones isolation among team members, and the matter only gets worse once we add the time zone dimension to the equation. Companies employing smaller internationally distributed teams are more likely to have staff members experience feelings of isolation and being left out from the company culture and general social interactions. Moreover, a lack of communication across teams carries another set of risks.

working in different time zones

Make sure all of them are always planned and put in the team’s calendar. Keep each meeting time short and discuss the matters according to the agenda prepared before (it’s good when similar meetings share the same plan, it’s much faster to go point by point then). It also significantly improves communication in a hybrid workplace. Nevertheless, there are two sides to the same coin, and working with distributed teams also brings with it its challenges—one of which being how to manage them across time zones. When working across time zones, it’s likely that you’ll be on meetings at strange times of the day. I’ve found that I’m not always at my best during weird hours and so my notes become all the more important. For teams that work remotely, it’s a great idea to schedule one or two annual meetings where everyone relocates and meets in person.

Get All The Best Remote Working Tips

You can set up a separate workspace or create a list in the existing one and keep all the information in one, easily accessible place. Your employees will be allowed to leave the comment or respond to others there in case they need to discuss something. Although people, no matter the time zone, have similar work struggles, they can vary depending on their local economic and social issues. Sharing their experience, they add another value to their relationship as a team. It’s harder to get to know team members when everyone doesn’t work in the same office, not to mention in the same time zone.

  • If you’ve forgotten your password, request a password reset email.
  • We often assume when we’re talking to someone new that they’re in the same time zone as us.
  • For example, if you have employees across the country, perhaps the middle of the day is best for meetings.
  • Of course, that can be tricky when time zones get in the way.

Some apps like Google Calendars even serve a warning if you inadvertently try to book something outside of working hours. While it may seem overkill to hire a person solely dedicated to this, it’s a mistake to think that you can simply take what was working in the office. Or in overlapping time zones, and copy and paste it onto a truly distributed team.

1 The Best Way To Work With A Global Team

Hire people who feel passionate about their work, and give them the right tools and resources to succeed. Have a clear, common purpose and make sure everyone knows what that is. You want people to feel as though they’re part of something amazing, important and fulfilling.

It starts with establishing everyone’s preferred work hours, so you can communicate effectively without crossing anyone’s work-life boundaries. Next, you’ll want to make asynchronous communication the norm while leaving room for synchronous team-building. After all, having employees working in multiple time zones is like giving your company a 24-hour workday — with the best talent in the world.

Know What Time It Is

So, if your company has turned into a global business and wants to retain all your valued employees, you will need to ensure that the employees in their respective time zone feel appreciated and respected. Moreover, you can also follow the below guidelines to create a better management strategy for your newly decentralized work culture. With the tools and services currently available, it’s possible to have a team that spans the planet. Google Calendar, Slack, email, and Zoom are just a few tools that help us stay connected across offices. By being aware of times and locations, along with good communication, companies can become global workforces, working together no matter where they are. We host team meetings, one-on-one meetings, all hands, and more on Zoom.

working in different time zones

Similarly, the rest of the team should be comfortable working autonomously with minimum instruction and interference to ensure maximum productivity. As therise of remote jobscontinues, businesses of all sizes are feeling the draw of a global virtual workplace. Employing an international team gives you all the productivity of a 24-hour workday, with colleagues able to pass projects in progress to international counterparts as they clock off. Coordinating across time zones might be tough, but it’s worth making the effort not just for work-related conversations but for fun. In any work environment building relationships fosters trust, increases collaboration, and raises productivity—but it’s especially important for remote teams. Social relationships with colleagues not only combats isolation, but it decreases barriers to asking questions, getting help, and taking risks that are crucial to growth.

Organize Virtual Socializing For Your Team

Before leaving for my travels, I outlined a lot of deadlines to keep myself accountable. Therefore, I didn’t want to miss them for anything, driven by the fear that my team might be wondering what I was up to if not delivering on my communicated plans. Top 8 Strategies on How to Manage Developers Remotely Even though the concept of remote work is not new, it took a pandemic for people to actually leverage its benefits… Top 10 Tips on How to Hire Back-End Developers in 2022 With market competitiveness at an all-time high, back-end teams are being challenged to provide solid solutions that improve efficiency… You can keep this information securely on the cloud or the company intranet. With website personalization, you can even make certain approved documents into a public resource that customers can access as part of a self-service help platform. Create a video chat guidelines document to ensure that you won’t waste precious time waiting for everyone to connect or wondering whether you have your microphone muted.

  • By embracing different time zones, you can build a more diverse and inclusive workplace.
  • There’s a lot of gesticular communication on video chats, so the quality must be keeping up.
  • One is they actually get to see and hear the conversation themselves.
  • Of course, not everything is best when it comes tocollaborating across multiple time zones.
  • Similarly, working across time zones is beneficial to companies on a larger, operational level.

Share these with the team, so everyone knows when it’s okay to dish work and when it’s not. Teams can collaborate to meet deadlines without the need for overtime or late-night shifts. Employees in one time zone can hand off semi-completed projects for coworkers to finish in the next. «Be ready to jump on a call/video-call without having to schedule a time for it,» Ronnqvist Ahmadi advises. «Let your team know you’re available over Slack , and build in ‘air-time’ in your agenda for check-ins or quick chats.» Aside from specifically discussing timezone-related needs and boundaries as needed, you can also mark your standard work hours on a team calendar — while encouraging colleagues to do the same.

However, when you’re managing remote team members, not all communication happens in real-time. Being respectful of your remote team members’ office hours may equate to less synchronous communication. O Skilled at working hard and intelligent, sometimes with fluid hours when the executive is in different time zones. In a traditional, physical office space, it is easier for a newly joined employee to adapt to work culture.

working in different time zones

No matter how independently you can work, and how hard you try to stay connected, you won’t be in the flow of what everyone’s doing unless you have a team chat tool. «At TechCrunch and The Next Web, having a central point of contact is critical,» says Russell.

Benefits Of Working Across Time Zones

Let us analyze a few of these applications, their features and functionalities, and how these tools can be useful for managing developers from across the world. Teams in traditional office settings sometimes measure productivity by how long each team member spends at their desk. But remote teams can fall into the «I’m online, so I’m being productive» trap, too. A time shift, though, forces you to show what you’ve actually accomplished, since few others were there to see if you were logged in all day. The actual time difference between co-workers is a significant barrier to effective real-time communication. If remote employees don’t have overlap in work hours, there can be a lag between a question being asked and answered.

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Having all shifts and time zones covered is especially convenient for support and customer service as people don’t need to work past the conventional work hours in their countries, in the case of an emergency. However, other departments and industries can benefit from the approach as well. As much as it’s important to keep a strong bond between remote coworkers through continual communication and real-time collaboration, there’s also a strong case for the asynchronous, no-distraction work.

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