How to manage your remote finance teams efficiently

Apr 05, 2024

Employees facing burnout is becoming quite common. This is more likely to happen for finance teams whose roles are never confined.

To compensate for the all-encompassing nature of their jobs, they have begun turning their workstyle flexible too. We can see many finance teams functioning remotely now.

But there is also a complaint that they are churning numbers all time, every single day. This must be because managers who poorly manage finance teams don’t seek technology’s help. Is the change waiting around the corner?

Ways to effectively manage your remote finance team

Though there are bumpy starts, there is still a good time lying ahead for finance leaders to manage their teams effectively. With work from home and remote working becoming the best perks, this is the best time to utilize and attract the best talent.

Here are some steps you can implement to create an ideal remote working environment for your finance teams.  

1. Identify, map, and update the remote working policy

If your company doesn’t have a remote working policy in place, start creating one. Or, if you already have one, this is the time to review and modify that.

Many companies struggle to find the do’s and don’ts and get the team aligned only because of outdated policies. Working at home involves many things that organizations should care about.

Your core policy should be centered around it. Let your policies dictate basic norms to be followed, assets and data protection, break and absenteeism, communication methods, and home office prerequisites.

Also, draw ways to log their productivity with work management tools and ensure it’s well communicated. It’s not about controlling employees and overseeing every minute of their work sessions.

Give them a sense of self-reliance and responsibility while giving your managers the power to approve major decisions like leaves, breaks, and performance updates.

Be open to suggestions and keep improving your policies as time goes on. Policies are not just to merely follow but to embrace and adapt. 

2. Re-align core finance

Now you have the guidelines to manage remote finance teams. Review your core financial activities and how they are carried out. Reshape them to suit the remote workstyle.

Core finance activities of a typical organization include expense approvals, budget planning, and resource allocation. This burden will be unthinkable for a company receiving paper invoices.

Develop protocols so that people in the office can accept and turn them into electronic formats for others to access. While moving to flexible work arrangements, it’s best to move your work online for easier accessibility and safety.

Your remote employees should have no struggle accessing accounting documents safely. Move to a centralized accounting system like Volopay, where you can electronically manage your bills and invoices and automate approvals expeditiously. 

Cloud-based apps are convenient to use and act synchronously with other enterprise applications (That is, you can connect and automatically transfer data between one another). 

3. Take up strategic finance initiatives

It’s pretty common for finance teams to lose focus on strategic finance initiatives among their busy day-to-day finance-related tasks.

But, you cannot let your financial goals management take a backseat as you must stay up-to-date on finance key metrics. 

Following up on strategic finance measures requires a collaborative effort from many teams, which can take more work for remote teams to accomplish.

That’s why you need to set up workflows and assign authorized personnel to collect data, analyze that, and generate weekly and monthly reports.

If they need input from multiple teams, then have a common folder where everyone can share their consolidated data and review others. Working in a remote environment, it won’t work for everyone to set up calls and discuss strategic initiatives.

Establishing an automated workflow and implementing timely alerts is how you can equally focus on strategic initiatives and other financial tasks.

4. Adopt digital collaboration and productivity tools

Employees who work in remote finance teams miss communication the most. As they have to work collaboratively, for the most part, they find themselves isolated and away from the work environment in remote teams.

To ensure maximum engagement and communication, you must empower your remote finance teams with communication and web conferencing tools.

To prevent data threats, you must have highly-secure applications in place and conduct security experiments frequently.

Also, documents and spreadsheets created and stored by one professional create more obstacles for others to review, share, or comment on.

This is why collaborative tools, file-sharing platforms, and cloud storage are required to let your remote team work simultaneously.

This way, finance team management becomes more straightforward, and significant decisions get completed on time.

5. Keep engaging with team members

Working from the office gives finance leaders more opportunities to engage with their teams. A similar effect must also be created while managing finance teams remotely.

Companies should make efforts to establish a fun working environment where every member feels like a part of the team. There can be daily casual status calls during the start and end of the day where employees discuss things other than work.

Weekly and monthly fun activities can be there. Managers should come up with creative ways and themes to get the best side of every employee reflected in their workplace. 

To contribute the most, especially from a non-work environment, employees should have a sense of belonging. This can be created only when the leadership team makes an effort and keep everyone in touch.

6. Give out rewards, bonuses, and promotions

Remote finance teams also need constant reassurance that they are doing good. Like how they are reminded of their targets and goals, their performance and excellence must be conveyed too.

If you want to top it up a notch, recognize their efforts and send them rewards. Competent employees will find an opportunity anywhere. They will easily switch to other organizations if their major efforts are not recognized. 

To have a reasonable employee retention rate, finance leaders must promote the best talents when it's due. This will make them commit to the organization’s goals and perform at their best.

When your employees share their progress with you on social media and forums, it gains positive attention and makes people talk about your brand.

How can expense management software help finance teams?

For remote finance teams to thrive in an organization and perform at their peak, they need agile, robust, and easily accessible solutions.

By investing in such software, an organization can facilitate healthy remote working culture and ensure data accuracy.

One crucial software that they primarily work on is the expense management system. Cloud-based systems make their work more accessible as it allows simultaneous online accessibility.

With role-based access, you can control who gets access to what and limit their privileges. All these measures are a must to strengthen your remote finance team and get work done rapidly. 

That’s why cloud-based accounting and finance applications like Volopay are necessary. Here is how Volopay empowers and stabilizes your remote finance management.

It can automate your entire payment cycle, making finance teams approve expense requests as soon as it comes. Volopay is a centralized system for all your business payment processes.

Hence, there is a unified location where anyone can connect to and work from anywhere. Approving employee expense requests on time is possible despite working outside the office.

Approvers get automated push and email notifications and can log in anytime to process incoming requests. Other tasks like monitoring expenses and making budgeting decisions can be carried out stress-free.

Volopay offers a flexible platform where people from different teams, locations, and access levels can collaborate and manage finances. 

Leverage Volopay's smart tech to manage your business finance remotely