The Pros of Hiring Across Time Zones
One of the advantages of remote work is the ability to hire from a wider geographic area. Companies have increased changes of finding the right set of skills by broadening their search beyond their headquarters.
Some companies have already broken all the barriers and are hiring across countries. But organizations that aren't ready to deal with the implications of a global workforce can still find it appealing to look across state or city lines.
"Our data reveals that more than half of business leaders expect their teams to become more geographically distributed over the next five years," said Nadia Vatalidis, VP of people at San Francisco, CA-based Remote, citing results from Remote’s Global Benefits Report 2022.
The Benefits of a Dispersed Workforce
Having access to a wider talent pool has numerous benefits for employers, including:
Improved Access to Talent
A Gartner study has found that businesses have been seeking outside workers because of the challenges to find them locally. The Great Resignation has certainly fueled this trend, dispersing technically skilled employees away from the traditional urban hubs.
This is particularly true of the tech sector. The New York Times has reported that tech companies outside of Silicon Valley have greatly benefited from the move to remote work, unlocking rapid growth by tapping into talent pools they didn't have access to just a couple of years earlier.
Companies that open their doors to talent from other locations can gain an important edge over the competition, particularly if that competition is requiring employees to come into the office to work.
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With employees across different time zones, companies in certain industries can provide around-the-clock service, ensuring one team picks up the work when another shift ends. This can not only increase productivity and output but also customer satisfaction and brand reputation.
"Hiring permanent staff across time zones is an excellent way to confirm that work gets done," said James Limbrit, co-founder of New Castle, Delaware-based virtual assistant company Yes Assistant.
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"Businesses can keep the wheels turning for 24 hours on weekdays, helping them increase their revenue stream," echoed Simon Bacher, the CEO and co-founder of Hong Kong-based Ling.
By having teams worldwide, Bacher said, companies can increase revenues without creating new roles or increasing their headcount, by strategically locating them so that teams can service a wider pool of customers.
In addition to increasing output, a dispersed workforce can mean fewer distractions and, therefore, greater productivity, Bacher said. Teams that are not constantly interrupted by a variety of chats and requests during the day can often complete more deep work, which will improve their work quality and how much they get accomplished.
Companies that are interested in exploring this benefit may want to ensure they implement asynchronous communications practices and ways to process information and respond to queries on employees' respective timescales, so that nothing falls between the cracks.
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Vatalidis said that by recruiting a geographically dispersed workforce, team members can feel more empowered and efficient. In turn, they are more likely to feel invested in the company and driven to success.
Research from the Pew Research Center found that when companies have a better, happier culture, they tend to have better employee retention.
About the Author
Kaya Ismail is a business software journalist and commentator with years of experience in the CMS industry. He is also the Founder of Wordify, a content marketing agency for software vendors.