Frequently asked questions

Your questions answered

What is remote collaboration?

Remote collaboration means working together effectively when people are in different physical locations.

Workers are becoming more dispersed. Whether partially or completely home-based, organizations have an increasing need to recruit the best talent and operate across national and international boundaries, making effective remote collaboration more important than ever.

Many businesses operate globally and don’t want their employees to have to make journeys every time they need to collaborate with colleagues. This reduces efficiency and increases costs. Instead, many companies invest in technologies and tools that can make remote collaboration as effective as face-to-face.

Here are two things organizations can do to support their employees and make remote collaboration as effective as possible:

Provide effective communication tools

Good communication is key to effective remote collaboration. Employees may use voice calls or messaging apps to stay in touch one to one. For group communication, videoconferencing and collaboration platforms like Slack, Basecamp, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet allow remote teams to communicate and to share resources. Shared storage and document management systems mean that several workers can view and update the same document, with a record of the updates and versions.

Remote collaboration isn’t just about internal workers – it also includes clients, partners, contractors or freelancers.

Collaboration platforms can be set up to include these third-party team members in a secure way, so they can access the information and people they need to collaborate remotely on their particular project or team.

Develop a culture of trust

It goes without saying that all employees should feel that their employer trusts them.

When it comes to remote working and remote collaboration, there’s a need for trust because managers and clients can’t necessarily directly see the people in their team working hard in the same office or building.

A positive remote working culture is vital for effective collaboration. Workers and managers need to recognize the practical and productivity benefits of remote collaboration. For example, when workers are based in different locations and countries, remote collaboration means employers can bring together exactly the right skills for a particular team or project, no matter where their people are based.

Remote collaboration can cut travel time and expense and support a smaller corporate carbon footprint. Employees are often more motivated and productive when they’re able to work flexibly as part of a team, rather than having to commute or keep to fixed office hours.

Discover how 500+ HR leaders are embracing the HR to People transformation in the digital world of work by exploring our research report.

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