Mistakes to avoid when working with offshore employees

Be it because of lack of local talent, to cut down operating costs, or enhance efficiency, companies have been outsourcing their businesses to offshore locations for decades. Offshoring is an ideal solution to many business issues. While it is known to be beneficial and provide new opportunities, it comes with its own set of challenges. One such challenge of offshoring is working with offshore employees.

If a company has always worked with in-house staff, it cannot be easy to transition to a remote work setup. When some of your employees are miles away from your company, a new approach towards work is required. Sometimes, companies prefer not to outsource overseas because they feel working with offshore employees is too much of a hassle. It’s not a cakewalk, sure, but it’s certainly not as agonizing either. It’s all about learning new ways to run your business. To make it easier for you, below, we share a few mistakes to avoid when working with offshore employees.

  •  Not giving them the bigger picture.

Companies hire offshore employees to cover specific roles or perform particular tasks. They are often expected to do their part without them knowing about the bigger picture. If you hire offshore employees for a certain project, they need to be aware of the project. Letting them know about your objectives and goals helps them to perform their jobs better. They are capable of performing the tasks delegated to them without additional information, sure. But sometimes a company can benefit from giving them the larger picture. It helps the offshore employees be a part of your team, and it allows them to modify their approach towards the job for the better, depending on the project’s expected result.


Do you frequently check in with your offshore employees? Are you constantly asking them for updates? Do you ask them to check with you for every little task? You might think it ensures your company’s work is on track, but your offshore employees might think you do not trust their capabilities. There is a difference between managing and micromanaging. It is essential to monitor the employees to make sure they are on the right track, we agree. But you also need to have trust in them. If you hired them for the job, then they are surely qualified. Set up a system wherein you get your updates, and they don’t feel overwhelmed by your virtual presence. You can ask them to update you about the work at the end of each day or use certain apps or tools to monitor their work’s progress. Ask them to contact you when they are unsure about anything. Don’t micromanage their every move. They are professionals. Treat them as such.

Not acknowledging their hard work

If your in-house team member produces good results or offers a good solution to a problem, it is easy to acknowledge their contribution with a simple “good job” or “great idea!” It isn’t much, but it makes your employees feel appreciated. The same cannot be done with offshore employees. They might work hard, face obstacles and tackle them, never miss deadlines, and always provide quality results, but it might never get acknowledged because they are not there in person with you. You see the final results only. It is essential to offer praise when deserved to keep the offshore employees feel valued and motivated. A short email or a quick passing reference during your routine calls can go a long way. Appreciate their work.

Contacting them at all hours

Always remember that offshore employees mean different time-zones. Your working hours are different from their working hours. Be cognizant of your offshore employee’s time. Unless you have a previously agreed upon arrangement or it is absolutely unavoidable, do not contact them outside the working hours. If it can wait a day, it is advised to wait. Your offshore employees need to maintain a work-life balance as well, and if you frequently disturb them when they are not working, they might come to resent you and your company. If you have overlapping hours with your offshore employees, use them. If not, make an arrangement that is agreeable to both. Don’t expect them to make compromises every time.

Failing to provide them updates

If you have your offshore employees working on a project with your in-house team, it is essential that they be on the same page. If any changes are to be made or new developments in the project, don’t forget to communicate it to your offshore team as well. Failure to update them will lead to the offshore team producing an outcome that is different from the intended results. It is a waste of their time and effort and a waste of your money. Not to mention it leads to delay in the project. To ensure the best results, and maintain your project’s quality, devise a system that keeps all your employees- onshore and offshore- in the loop.

It may seem like simple things, but you might overlook it unless you are familiar with working with offshore employees. Some of these points may not impact your project or company on a large scale, but it can make a difference in your relationship with your employees. Now you know which mistakes to avoid when working with the offshore employees.