Working Across Multiple Time Zones as a Remote Team

Working Across Multiple Time Zones as a Remote Team

Local time (2 a.m. ET) yesterday, the Air Quality Index reached 215, marked as “severe pollution,” according to the state media, citing Shanghai’s real-time air quality release. HONG KONG — Thousands of people gathered across Hong Kong’s Victoria harbor, as the city welcomed the new year with a fireworks display that was last seen in 2018. Deliver remote and hybrid skills training at scale with our Workplaceless Unlimited program. WebEx is able to have hundreds of participants join compared to its competitors. If you have an extremely large team or you host calls with lots of external participants, it’s important to make sure everyone can join.

When working with teams in different time zones, the most important thing to remember is to be mindful, empathic, and courteous. Both Shan and Weiss have been working abroad in far-off time zones since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, when they decided to stay in the regions they were visiting rather than return to the United States. Efficient document sharing and version control are the cornerstones of seamless collaboration in a remote work setting. You can break down the distance barriers with video conferencing tools that bring face-to-face interactions to the virtual world.

Limited opportunities for employee effort recognition

We find a consultative process is most effective for companies with 50 or more employees and a rapid process is more impactful for companies with fewer than 50 employees. By utilizing Dropbox, you can access the files from any computer or phone as long as you log in. It’s also a great tool to back up your computer or phone in case anything crashes. Google Drive is another file sharing and storage option if you like the Google platform.

  • When compared against the benefits, the downsides of working across several time zones are minor inconveniences.
  • Make sure your team members have an equipped workspace that will help them maintain a high level of productivity.
  • Managers and decision-makers are the ones facing the harshest challenges when working with teams who operate across time zones.

And with 94% of employees reporting that they’d stay longer at a company if it invested in their careers, providing virtual mentoring opportunities can also be beneficial. Managers of dispersed teams should make a conscious effort to check in regularly and connect with individual team members as well as the group as a whole. These meetings not only improve the relationships between specific colleagues, but also contribute to maintaining team cohesion. Meeting planning is made easier with tools like World Time Buddy and Time and Date. Simply enter your team’s current locations, and these calculators will calculate the best times to meet (and even show local holidays being observed).

Establish Everyone’s Time Zone and Preferred Work Hours

There are lots of color options, so you can assign each employee or team a certain color on the calendar. During the pandemic, Zoom became one of the most popular tools for companies almost overnight. The user-friendly interface is simple to download and easy to get started with minimal effort.

best practices for working across time zones

Communication in particular is hard when one team is arriving at the office just as another is leaving, or when one teammate is sleeping peacefully just as another is hitting their midday stride. But there are ways to tackle differences between time zones that preserve collaboration and keep communication effective. Maybe you’re headquartered in Sydney but work with contractors around the globe. Or maybe you’re fully distributed, with teammates on every continent around the world. The best way to be mindful of different time zones is to disregard time entirely and rely on asynchronous communication.

Managing a Team Across 5 Time Zones

To build a successful team that operates autonomously, companies should consider setting clear employee expectations regarding personality traits and soft skills best suited for this work model. These can be used as a reference point throughout the hiring process and as additional coaching with established teams. Similarly, the rest of the team should be comfortable working autonomously with minimum instruction and interference to ensure maximum productivity. Speaking of connection among teammates, working across time zones makes it almost impossible to keep the team spirit and social engagement up.

Research firm Global Workplace Analytics estimates that workers save between $600 and $6,000 per year by working from home at least half of the time. These savings are primarily due to reduced costs for gas, parking, car maintenance, and food. In a public Slack channel, praising people who oppose efforts encourages one of our culture pillars of being challenged. Setting up the necessary structures and tools to constantly reinforce culturally acceptable norms is a major step in the right direction that many businesses ignore. Cultural values have a significant impact on hiring approach, attracting individuals who share similar beliefs and rejecting those who do not. One of the reasons a remote company like Turing’s culture is robust and our team members are so united is due to the clear nature of our principles.

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