Challenges and Benefits of Working Across Time Zones

GitLab’s handbook is one of the most famous (and best executed) examples of how to build a fantastic employee manual and distributed workplace culture. At 2,200+ pages, it’s thorough, transparent, even allowing people who don’t work at GitLab to contribute. Ideally, your company will set up Google Drive, Dropbox, or whatever file-sharing system you use so files are automatically accessible to the entire company. If they can’t access the file, they’ll have to wait for you to be online again. If you are providing information, invest the additional time upfront to answer any questions or solve any issues you think the person may have ahead of time. It’s crucial that you adopt a remote-first mindset, document decisions clearly and concisely for people who are unable to attend, and record the meeting.

  • Naturally, organizations jumped at the opportunity to select from a global pool of talent which is, essentially, the key factor that led to the formation of teams that span across different time zones.
  • Many business leaders are re-calibrating and tailoring their operations to best support a dispersed workforce.
  • Start by culling synchronous communication like daily stand-ups and instead move toward written status updates.
  • Synchronous communication („sync”) is when discussions are conducted in real-time, allowing for immediate responses and feedback between colleagues.
  • However, other departments and industries can benefit from the approach as well.

In this one, you can type in specific places and time zones to get exact times for those who may not be in the major cities. Possibly the simplest tip of all is also the one that can be the hardest to keep top of mind. Typically, we try to be mindful of what time it is for others when we use synchronous communication like video or Slack.

All the benefits of a distributed workforce – with none of the headache

Other cultures avoid direct eye contact during a discussion, while some insist on using formal language.

working across time zones

With the proliferation of remote work comes the likelihood of working with colleagues in different time zones. This was a possibility even before many people started working from home—for example, between a home office in New York, New York, and a satellite office in Los Angeles, California. There are more time zone tools at, too, so be sure to check it out if you want to find local times around the world for your event, convert times for any working remotely in a different time zone location, and more. If you travel the world frequently, knowing which a time zone you’re in relative to GMT is crucial—and it’s also important if you’re working with a distributed team. Knowing the difference between Eastern, Central, Mountain, and Pacific time alone isn’t enough anymore. You’ll need to know which times of the day your colleague in London will be awake, and the times you’re most likely to get support tickets from your Australian customers.

UTC Time

Employees who do not establish clear work boundaries risk burning out, which negatively impacts the entire team’s productivity, creativity, and collaboration. To get started, teams can use the Placeless Taxonomy as a simple framework for adopting more asynchronous communication practices. With teams expanding to numerous locations, there is a greater need to understand how to build relationships specific to a dispersed team structure. Workplaceless is committed to helping multi-time zone teams through learning and facilitation through our remote work training programs.

It might not be possible—or even desirable—for each team member to take ownership of part of your company’s work, but you can break projects up in a way that everyone has their own specific area to focus on. This strategy makes your projects asynchronous, which remote developer Mutahhir Ali Hayat suggests is the best way to make remote development work out. Fried and Heinemeier Hansson offer another upside to remote work in their book on the topic. „The big transition with a distributed workforce is going from synchronous to asynchronous collaboration,” they write. „Not only do we not have to be in the same spot to work together, we also don’t have to work at the same time to work together.” The rest of the year, we manage to work together across 17 time zones, using Slack, Zoom, and some sheer effort to all stay connected.


Godziny otwarcia
Pon - pt
6:30 - 17:00

NUTKOLANDIA 2023 Wszelkie prawa zastrzeĹźone Projekt & wykonanie Strony www Jaworzno