Despite the fact we live in a digitally connected world, a lot of business still has to happen face-to-face.
For many employees – from sales to development and servicing, much of their time has to be spent outside the office on the road.
Living an active working life, going from meeting to meeting, or client to client can present challenges not only for those employees but their managers as well.
Here are 4 tips for how to best manage employees who are always out and about.
1. Set A Clear Job Definition
It’s always important to clearly define your employees’ roles but it’s even more vital when they’re on the road. Without managers to turn to, on the road employees need to know exactly the extent of their remit – what they can and cannot do.
If an employee over-promises or tries to fix something that they are not covered to do, the results could be catastrophic. Give your employees scenarios to show them clearly the limits of what they are expected to do and when they should refer cases to their managers.
2. Have Regular Communication
While regular communication is key for all roles, it’s particularly important when employees aren’t in the office. Having regular communication times and protocols that allow you to catch up with employees, speak with them directly and find out how their work is going.
Set clear communication rules for after meetings, e.g. call within two hours, as well as regular speaking slots. Also, make sure you get in some facetime so you can bond and read your employees’ facial expressions and mannerisms.
3. Give Them Support For The Road
Being on the road can present unexpected challenges. Make sure you have your employees covered by ensuring they are well covered should anything happen. Set them up with medical, transportation and property insurance to cover against accidents and theft.
Give them good transport assistance as well, such as breakdown insurance or a dedicated agent to cover their travel needs. Lastly, give them a key manager they can get in touch with if there’s an emergency. The more support they have, the less distracted they will be from their job.
4. Focus On Productivity
To really understand how your employees are performing on the road, you need to measure their productivity. When they’re not in the office with you, it can be difficult to get a handle on how well they’re working.
One of the best options is to use employee monitoring software. Solutions such as KnowIT can be installed remotely your employees devices and can record exactly when they work and what apps and websites they use on both iOS and Android devices.
The software can generate personalized productivity reports and give you a very clear insight into exactly how and when your employees are working outside of the office.
Over to you
Have any tips for managing off-site employees that you think we should know about? Let us know in the comments section below!