How to communicate better with your offshore development team?
Nowadays, it is common for businesses to work with an offshore development team, especially in the software development industry, in order to keep up with the competition while staying within their budget. Even though there are numerous advantages to doing so, offshoring necessitates extra supervision and attention on your part to ensure that the distance does not negatively impact the development team’s productivity.
The best way to understand their concerns and overcome any distance-related challenges is by building strong communication with your offshore development team. This article will walk you through a number of strategies for communicating better with your team so that you can avoid any setbacks that may occur for your business due to a lack of communication. Learn more.
Why does effective communication matter?
Communication is a critical component of setting up a successful and productive offshoring team. Collaborative work and work quality may suffer without proper communication, preventing the whole team from accomplishing its goals. With good communication, the teams can operate smoothly, eventually building trust among the team members. It will, therefore, result in improving their commitment to the work and their efficiency as a team.
- Statistics show that a lot of workers attribute workplace failure to ineffective communication.
- A business can suffer significantly from poor communication, which can result in expensive errors as well as a drop in productivity and efficiency.
- Unfinished work, unhappy clients, and underperforming employees are the outcomes of communication breakdowns.
- For businesses, this can mean lost revenue, time, and reputation.
- Effective and continuous communication between the onshore and offshore development teams is crucial to preventing these failures.
Communication strategies for your offshore team
Now, you read about the importance of effective communication in the above section. So, in order to ensure that your offshore development team is collaborating effectively, you should come up with some effective communication strategies. This section will provide you with a few tips to help you with that.
- Make work instructions clear and concise
- Prioritise daily/weekly communication
- Employ Collaboration Tools Wisely
- Be very careful with the conversational tone
- Make the most of the time difference
- Completely accept your remote team
1. Make work instructions clear and concise
The first tip is to make your work instructions clear and easy to follow for the members. Make sure not to leave any room for misinterpretation in your instructions because it can lead to work errors. Sometimes, such errors can be expensive and time-consuming to rectify.
The best way to avoid it is by documenting the expectations for every task by producing a standard operating procedure (SOP). It will help them avoid misunderstandings or confusion. Also, having a work protocol like that will save them the hassle of back-and-forth email communication.
2. Prioritise daily/weekly communication
Success in project management requires consistent communication with your team. It will ensure that there are no miscommunications and that everyone is in agreement. Organise regular team meetings and maintain open lines of communication every day to ensure that any problems or inquiries are promptly resolved. To ensure that everyone can be reached at any time, make sure your communication channels are dependable and safe.
3. Employ Collaboration Tools Wisely
Sometimes, the team may find employing multiple platforms to communicate on a daily basis a little overwhelming to keep up with. In such cases, the best thing to do is to give each communication platform a purpose.
For instance, use emails to communicate with clients, Slack for project progress updates, and Skype exclusively for meetings. You must communicate all of the details to your offshore developers, regardless of how you assign tasks to various channels. The choice of what works best for you is yours to make.
4. Be very careful with the conversational tone
Usually, text messaging is used to communicate with your offshore developers. Your message might come across as strictly informative, and the recipient might interpret it differently. It can be avoided to some extent by stating things clearly, avoiding sarcasm, and occasionally using emojis.
When possible, opt for audio and video calls; this is merely because you can read the other person’s facial expressions and adjust your communication style accordingly. Observing and listening to each other increases productivity. You can get to know your team better and communicate more genuinely with this mode. Building the kind of relationship you want when working side by side is made possible by various little things.
5. Make the most of the time difference
Sometimes, the internal team and your committed offshore developers know how to communicate, but they do not know when to do it. There are numerous strategies to get past the problematic obstacles presented by the time difference. Finding a schedule that overlaps with your development team is what you need to do, and then you should plan the work accordingly.
6. Completely accept your remote team
Getting to know the individuals in your remote team personally will help you enhance communication even further. How well clients work with the remote team is one success factor that sets successful projects apart from the rest. Making an effort to get to know remote team members and sharing the company’s mission can help develop an efficient working relationship with a committed development team.
- As you are familiar with every detail of your in-house team, you should also be familiar with your offshore team’s history, interests, pastimes, and habits. It is undoubtedly going to help in the long run.
- Ensure that internal communications about the company’s growth always include the offshore development team.
- Regardless of their location, remote teams ultimately want to feel a connection to the company’s mission.
- Ensure that your company’s management team and your offshore developers get along well.
- Next, present yourself as a collaborator rather than a tactical customer by offering constructive criticism.
These are the top six strategies you can use to have better communication with your offshore development team. As you know, your company’s success can greatly depend on how efficiently you can collaborate with them. When there is effective communication, there will be transparency, a strong foundation of trust, and mutual understanding with the team. This will lead to a successful, long-term business relationship that will benefit both parties.
The author: Sascha Thattil works at Software-Developer-India.com which is a part of the YUHIRO Group. YUHIRO is a German-Indian enterprise which provides programmers to IT companies, agencies and IT departments.