How do you maintain security of information?
To protect your security you need to set up password protection software and google documents for sharing information. Google documents provide you with a level of transparency when it comes to productivity because they are real time documents that can be shared, edited and viewed by multiple users with set permissions.
There are workspace as a service technology platforms that lock down desktops so that files can never be downloaded onto computers and devices. It depends on what level or security you require. These workspaces virtualise software and enable you to share company documents across different locations including internationally as all the data lives on the cloud.
When you employ the person you give them a contract with terms and expectations. This includes a confidentiality agreement. Never in all my years of outsourcing and managing team members have I had a breach of security.
Why do you specialise in full time placements?
Full time placements work better over part time ones because they protect both yourself as the employer as well as the team member. When you commit to a full time person you can safely invest in the training of your employee and your employee does not need to split their loyalty between two or more employers. Full time arrangements work better over part time. You get greater loyalty, commitment and reliability.
Why do you specialise in the Philippines?
There are many reasons I focus on the Philippines. Firstly they are an English speaking nation where English in compulsory within their school system, from a young age.
Applicants are degree qualified.
The Philippines used to be an American colony and has adopted the American schooling system.
The work ethic and attitude of employees from the Philippines makes them a good fit for Australian businesses. They are a Christian culture which means that their values are similar to ours.
The time zone is two hours behind Australia and the same time zone as Western Australia. This makes working for Australians more desirable then working for US companies as the workers don’t need to work what is referred to as the “grave yard” shift. So Australian companies get priority and attract the best talent.
How do you ensure that this arrangement is legal?
Outsourcing is not governed by Australian labor laws as the workers don’t work and live in Australia. Outsourcing is considered a normal business expense in your chart of accounts. It does incur GST if the legal entity of the company that employs your team member is an Australian company. There is no GST if you employ your team member directly and they work from home in the Philippines.
What is the difference between hiring someone that works from home and hiring someone that works from an office?
The main difference is your budget? Hiring someone that works from home costs around $200 AU per week for a full time person. Hiring someone that works from an office starts from $350 AU per week. If you plan to build a team consisting of more then three individuals then I recommend going to an office. When the staff work under the same roof they can learn from one another and you can instill your business culture into the team. Also it is easier when travelling to the Philippines to train your staff.
If you are only looking for one person or two at the most, and culture is not such an issue, staff that working from home is also an excellent choice. To manage productivity you need to set up the right software such as time tracking software and password protection software as well as tracking and transparency. It is a good idea to set work hours and expectations very firmly. Once you do all this with the right person that has a great attitude, productivity is not an issue and many of my clients successfully employ staff that work from home and have done so for years and years.
Technology enables you to maintain security and even when your team work from an office you still have to train them yourself and manage their results and productivity.
How do you manage a remote team member?
Set up expectations correctly from the start, such s work hours, tasks and training, shared documents, tracking and reporting.
Set up the correct software from the beginning. The most important software is time tracking. This is mandatory.
Set up how you will deliver communication and new tasks.
Have a weekly face to face meeting.
Check time sheets weekly, be available to answer questions and set up communication platforms i.e. Skype and or Voxer.
Review productivity weekly at the minimum.
Someone has to be available to answer questions and maintain a connection.
What software do you need to set up?
• Time tracking
• Project management
• Google Docs
What is transparency when it comes to outsourcing?
Transparency is where you are able to manage productivity easily. It requires a combination of software, key performance indicators, communication habits and documents such as google docs which are real time documents that can be shared, edited and viewed by multiple users with set permissions all at once in real time.
Without transparency doubt creeps in regarding productivity and the actual return on investment you are receiving from your outsourcing spend.