The idea of having no office, a bunch of people working from their own locations, and choosing the times they work seems very appealing.
The idea that it takes skills to run a office, and having staff that become used to personal interaction is probably a well known fact. However staff that are used to working remotely feel just as comfortable as office workers, some say even more so when no commute times and flexible working hours are added in. In addition it is easier, and faster to find the correct people for a project if a much larger area of the world is used for recruitment.
This is a list of needs for a remote team:
- communicate easily & privately.
- Example: https://www.hipchat.com/
- collaborative screen sharing (multiple similar screens, & multiple mouses).
- Example: http://screenhero.com/
- Able to conduct meetings with groups.
- Examples: Skype, & teamspeak.
- Collaborating, sharing files (especially large files, as today a video production is part of having a strong online presence).
- Example: Google Drive : http://youtu.be/wKJ9KzGQq0w
- The people in a remote organization are critical, and what they say, do, and feel is important. regardless of if your organization is a open collaboration, or a manager and employee relation, short reports that include videos are a great way to share how the work is going, any problems, and how people are feeling, and to learn about different cultures and work habits (that may include dress code, hours of work, punctual set work hours or very flexible style of working hours, and things like commitments to family & friends). Simple, but important examples are if a family has a new baby, the person has taken on additional studies, something has made a person unhappy, illness, friction between team members–or team members that work together well, and so on.
- Examples: Youtube plus written report on Google drive. 15five (write a report of 15 minutes, that takes a manager 5 minutes to read: http://www.15five.com/
- Project Management tools. This is one thing that is difficult to pin down as proper project management (costing, times, who does what) and actual methods of getting a project done often is quite different. Creativity does not seem to follow a simple project plan it would seem. however a manager does need to keep track of what is going on and make promises to people or groups as well as possibly paying for the costs of operation before the project makes a profit.
- Pivotal Tracker: http://www.pivotaltracker.com/
- Organizing stuff: https://trello.com/
- Organizing stuff: Pearltrees: http://www.pearltrees.com/ (collaboration is possible)
- Formal project tools:
Voices for your business and video characters:
Your Business Plan
✎ Your business Plan & Implementing It (Model) : http://youtu.be/QoAOzMTLP5s
✎ Managing Stock & Transport Systems
This is a little more complex as it involves paperwork (legal stuff) and actual management of stuff that moves through your storehouse or production system. It may also mean managing staff and machines that work with that “Stuff.”
If your organization handles information, then it may be easier to track it as it can be tagged and tracked within the computer system. Also with information, your employees probably are more then able to write progress reports that might be useful in giving you an idea where the work is on the project chart (Gantt chart for example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gantt_chart) if you are handling a large team.
Tracking & moving real real stuff however can be an issue in the past. However the author has been studying the “internet of things” and that system will be using electronics (possibly very small computers) or sensors combined with transmitters that much smaller then your fingernail: http://gizmodo.com/these-ant-sized-radios-might-power-the-internet-of-thin-1633891966
The transmitters and possibly electronics can form a system called a tag. You can stick a tag onto a item you are interested in—each tag has a separate internet address under IP6 (Internet Protocol (IP) address standard Version 6 (IPv6) [article]: http://wp.me/p10Tww-2iA).
With the tags in place you could just walk by with a scanner it will scan all tags in range rather then you having to do a slow inventory check. If scanners become cheap enough you may even install a scanner so the walk around the warehouse or production area is not required.
These tags provide raw data: such as stock serial number or identification number (the function of bar-codes in the past). But they can collect additional information if the tag has sensors or miniature computers that might include temperatures, container structural integrity, shock impacts to holding container and time that shock occurred, motion sensors indicating movement and when the product moved, and possibly many specific things about the product that a business might have a interest in.
Once a thing (stock) is tagged and has a identity number or bar-code, it can then have additional information added to it by a thing that is often refereed to as stock management system or inventory management system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inventory). Not all software is designed to integrate with the tags I mention above–a good system does achieve this; that is the collected data from your scanner (of fixed scanners if you can afford a lot of them), should be send directly to an analytical system that organizes the data in a way that makes sense to your business.
As people work towards The Internet of Things, you will find that this analytical software will become available in the most unlikely place: as downloadable apps on you iPhone or iPad.
So here is a summary of The Internet of Things and possibly an insight to the type of new technologies that are probably going to initially focus on business and government first and the general public in specific areas:
- Transmitters combined with electronics (computers possibly) or sensors of various types) will from a unit that we call a tag here. These tags will transmit sensor data, and general information (such as identification code). Each Tag will have a separate IP address.
- The information that the tags provide will be picked up by sensors. Sensors might collect information from a huge number of tags (possibly thousands or more).
- The data collected by sensors is sent to a data base (to be processed at a later time), or processed directly by analytical software. That will shape the data (if required) into a from the end user can make use of (you the business person often).
- you will access the data that may or may not have been analyzed by using software, or downloadable apps for you iPhone or iPad. That data will be displayed in a way that makes sense to you.
Stock or Inventory management has been a major investment in the past, especially if it was automated to a large degree, and some large companies are probably still around that will try and sell you their system if you are willing to pay for it. Often you might literally drown in all the technical talk and feel that this area is too difficult for you to handle. It is hoped that The Internet of Things, will make you feel more in control of what is going on.
- Internet of Things and its Impact on Supply Chain Management [article]: http://www.fronetics.com/business-management/internet-of-things-and-its-impact-on-supply-chain-management/
- 5 Ways the Internet of Things Drives New $$$ Opportunities [article]: https://infocus.emc.com/william_schmarzo/5-ways-the-internet-of-things-drives-new-opportunities/
- Internet of Things: The next major disruptor for retail [article]: http://www.the-future-of-commerce.com/2014/02/03/internet-of-things-retail-disruption/
- The Beer Industry Gets Crafty with the Internet of Things [article]: http://www.digi.com/blog/networking/the-beer-industry-gets-crafty-with-the-internet-of-things/
Transform Manufacturing with the Internet of Things
Transform Manufacturing with the Internet of Things : http://youtu.be/5OQQZ9eWF-4
Outsourcing and Optimizing your orders, production, for your remote teams, stock handling, and delivery systems using The Internet of Things
This is a theme that small businesses like yourself that will be interested in. The Internet of Things will not only help in working with your remote teams, but it can also make snap decisions of what location and shipping areas are available for the order you just received.
The IoT Uplink: The Future Of Production Flow And Big Data
The IoT Uplink: The Future Of Production Flow And Big Data : http://youtu.be/6Lin3s0A2kE
Want more information for your virtual and outsourced teams, check this out
For more information on this topic: Live shows, Video Production, Outsourcing [article]: http://wp.me/p10Tww-2Hb
Last edited in May 2014
Shortened link to article: Virtual teams & outsourced teams page [article]: http://wp.me/p10Tww-2RN
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