Remote management is a business tool that makes it possible to control equipment and various business functions without being physically present at the site of those activities. Commonly employed in industries like information technology and computer systems support, telecommunications, construction, manufacturing, and even in mining operations, remote management can sometimes provide the benefits of quick resolution of emerging issues. At the same time, this type of management process can create difficulties with some activities, including the level of control and the quality and frequency of communication between the site and the controller.
One of the greatest benefits connected with remote management is the ability to enjoy access to expertise without the need to incur a significant amount of travel expenses. For example, if a textile plant uses machinery that is manufactured in another country, flying technicians in to handle a major issue with that machinery can be quite expensive. If there are tools for remote management in place, a technician can make use of online communications to manipulate the tools needed to effect the repairs. Not only does the company save money on transportation costs, but also have the benefit of avoiding longer periods of downtime that would otherwise create additional expenses for the business.
Along with the ability to manage events in real time without incurring a lot of expense, remote management also has the advantage of allowing employees to telecommute rather than having to gather at a central location. Often, this means that central location can be smaller and more cost-effective to maintain, while still allowing employees to be electronically monitored for productivity and having access to managers when and as support is needed. Using this method can make it possible to draw on qualified employees from around the globe, connect them via a secure network, and make it possible for a manager or supervisor to have interaction with each employee through means of electronic voice and visual communications.
While remote management does offer a number of advantages, there are some potential drawbacks to consider. Unless the systems used to support the management process are efficient and also have a backup or contingency operational plan, the potential for communication failures is greatly enhanced. In addition, the processes used to measure performance and ensure that productivity remains within acceptable levels must be carefully designed if this approach is to work. Depending on the application, control of essential tasks may be somewhat more difficult with remote management. In order to minimize the potential liabilities and ensure that the benefits of remote management are enjoyed, investing resources in training personnel to properly use the management tools, as well as spending the money to create and maintain a fully functional remote access and management network is essential.