Frequently Asked Questions
What does Allshore do?
Allshore Global Resources is the client management, customer support, and sales headquarters, based in Norman, Oklahoma, USA. All of our clients are based in the United States, and Allshore is there to monitor and oversee communication, development work, and client-to-developer relationships for quality assurance. We are here to take care of the client needs, as well as making sure that developers are given a very comfortable and pleasant working environment.
Key players from Allshore, and what their roles are:
Our sales director works with the Pakistani sales team to find American clients who are interested in working with our company. We are a client-based company, and we focus on finding clients who have one long-term project, or many projects, for our development center to work on.
Tara Waddle, our Director of Client Relations, takes care of pairing the American clients with Pakistani developers. Their skills, working styles, and personalities are all matched as best as possible. From there, she establishes the first communication with the client. Additionally, she continues working on customer support issues, assists in Pakistani issues and HR management, EEA, and many other responsibilities. She may give you tips, tricks, or policy reminders, but itâ€™s just a way to have your back.
An account executive working with Allshore is always paired with a developer. If you are not working with Tara as your AE (account executive), you will be working with Kelsey Bjornsgaard [pronounced: Bee-yorn-s-guard]. Kelsey (or another AE) is there to make sure that the client is properly using Basecamp, consistently assigning tasks to you, and providing all of the necessary information on their projects. She is also there to help you if you have any communication or English questions, or if you are stuck, your client is away, and you need to urgently contact them. One of an AEâ€™s primary jobs is to monitor missed updates and break time. Like Tara, she is there to be a helpful reminder and to have your back!
Who is my project manager? Who assigns me tasks?
Your client will act as project manager, and will directly assign you tasks. We ask them to add these tasks as To-Do items in Basecamp, our online project management system. You should get into the habit of regularly checking Basecamp for new information or new tasks. If your client does not upload tasks on Basecamp, please inform your team lead or Tara.
How do I manage tasks on Basecamp?
When you are finished with a task on the To-Do list (on Basecamp), do not mark it off as complete!! Instead, leave a comment on the task to inform the client that it is complete [Example: â€œThis task is complete.â€] and any necessary information the client should know about that particular task.
This helps to ensure that the task was done according to the clientâ€™s standards, and that it works correctly both for you, and for your client.
What do I use the Skype for?
At least one Skype chat room is created for each company we work with. Tara creates these chat rooms as a central location for development communication. This is the place where you will directly discuss the projects and tasks with your client.
Who will be in the client Skype chat room with me?
An AE and team lead will be in the chat room with you and any of the clients from their company. We also add a dummy Skype account, the Allshore Monitor, to record chat history in case we ever need to reference previous text.
What sort of communication goes on in the client Skype chat room?
The client Skype chat room is established for all development communication. Your client will use this chat room to discuss tasks and the project with you. If you have any questions about it, you can post them here. In order to protect you from any communication issues, misunderstandings, or false promises, please make sure that you are not speaking to the client privately. It is always best practice to use the Skype chat room for communication (that is why it exists). Lastly, you will also post your hourly updates within this chat room.
What is an hourly update? What information do I include in an update?
We use hourly status updates as a way to keep our clients updated at all times. As you are working remotely from where your client is based, itâ€™s very important to keep them informed. Our hourly updates are one of the major reasons that clients choose to work with us.
The proper format for posting an update is, â€œ(o): Working on this task, completed this task earlier.â€ (o) is the text format of the clock emoticon on Skype, and is a symbol for clients and AEs to easily recognize your hourly updates.
Include as many details as possible on what you are currently working on, where you are at in a task, what you have completed, what you are about to work on, what tasks are still left, etc. You are free to include this information at any time throughout the day, but it is important to make sure you have some of it included in your hourly updates
When do I post my status updates?
Your updates will need to be posted in the client Skype chat room hourly. Best practice is to post your update between 10 minutes before the hour, and 10 minutes after the hour. Example: you would post your 7 p.m. update between 6:50-7:10 p.m.
If you are planning to leave your seat for a long period of time, such as for break time or a long office meeting, then you will need to post an update before that. The best example is before dinner break, at 9:30 p.m. If you post an update before you leave, then you will not need to post an update when you return.
What happens if I forget to update?
If you forget to update by ten minutes after the hour [Example: 7:10 p.m. or after for a 7 p.m. update], then an AE will remind you to update. This will count as a missed update. Although you will not be punished for missing an update, it may affect your status in EEA. It is your responsibility to remember to update hourly, and the AE is only there to help you out, as a reminder.
What do I do if I need to leave my seat?
If you need to leave your seat for any reason, including restroom breaks, dinner breaks, or office meetings, please post â€œbrbâ€ or â€œbe right backâ€ in your client Skype chat room. If you plan to be away from your seat for a long period of time, please post the reason you are leaving [Example: â€œbrb â€“ dinner breakâ€ or â€œbrb â€“ office meetingâ€].
When you return, also be sure to post that you have returned [Example: â€œBackâ€].
How much break time do I have throughout the day?
You are allowed to have a 30-minute break period in each workday. Most team members use this break time to have dinner, but you may also take a short dinner break and also a prayer break. We allow ten extra minutes for prayer, drink, or restroom breaks, taken throughout the day.
If you exceed 30 minutes, an AE will request that you make up your full 8 hours. We will only ever ask you to work up to 8 hours for each workday, except within special circumstances, which will be explained at that time.
Why are our shifts 8 hours?
Standard American businesses work in 8-hour shifts. In order to limit your shift times, so they do not drag on into late night hours, we only request team members to work within 8-hour shifts each day, unless there is a special circumstance preventing this. Most shifts should never exceed 8 hours of working time.
What do I do with my time? How do I manage or log my hours worked?
Basecamp, our online project management system, is also used to keep track of the working time you work with your clients. The hours you work must be logged within the correct project, under your clientâ€™s account each day. You will need to match the date with the date your shift started on, list the correct amount of hours you actually worked on the clientâ€™s tasks, and a description of what you worked on.
What are Basecamp projects?
Client accounts are added to Basecamp like Skype chat rooms are added. Each clientâ€™s company has an account. Within their account, we add projects titled by what the project actually is. Within these projects, you will find To-Do lists, message forums for extra discussion if needed, necessary files and information, and an area to log your time: you log your time under the specific project you worked with.
How can I share my screen with my client?
We use an online screen sharing system called WebEx. It allows you to share your screen with a group of people, or you to see someone elseâ€™s screen. You can also remote control from either end. It works best using Firefox or Chrome browsers, and can be set up at any time by asking an AE to start a WebEx session.
How to I give my client a demo?
We will use WebEx to give clients any demos, as they can see your screen and anything else you might need to show them.
How can I talk to my client if they are not online?
The AE team or your team lead can call your client to ask them any questions you might have, or request that they come online to speak with you. If you need to talk directly to a client who is out of the office, please ask an AE to set up a conference call with that client.
What do I do if I run out of tasks?
If you are out of tasks and the client is not on Skype, you should contact a member of the AE team, or a team lead. They will be able to contact your client outside of Skype and request more work.
If the client has no more tasks for you, then you should inform your AE and your team lead. They will add you to the R&D room to work on other tasks in the meantime. Your team lead can assign you these tasks.
What is the R&D chat room?
The R&D chat room is somewhat of a training, practice, or study room. We add new developers to this room to practice posting hourly updates and notifications, and to keep track of working hours. Also, if your client runs out of tasks and you have no work free, we will add you to the R&D chat room to update there while you wait.
How does the R&D chat room differ from a client Skype chat room?
The main difference is that there are no formal clients within the R&D room. Instead, the AE team and Datum management uses this chat room to make sure new developers are properly learning our processes, and free developers have tasks to work on. You will still post hourly updates and â€œbrbâ€ notifications like you would in a client Skype chat room.
How long will I be in the R&D chat room?
If you are new to our company, you will stay in the R&D chat room until the time you have a client assigning you tasks. We use this time to make sure you are able to learn our processes at a relaxed pace and for practice.
If you are currently working with a client, you will only stay in the R&D chat room until the client has assigned you more tasks.
What if I need a day off or short leave?
If you know that you will need a day off, or you would like to request a day off, there is a process you must followâ€”please send an email to both your team leader/manager, and the HR manager (Hammad Amin). You will need to include what dates you would like to request off, and a reason for your request.
How do my requests get approved or denied? How will I be notified whether it was approved or denied?
HR will discuss your request with management and the Director of Client Relations (Tara). Tara will then discuss this request with your client, to make sure that they do not have any important plans or arrangements already made for the date you are requesting off. She will then inform Hammad of what the client says, and he will inform you directly whether or not your request has been denied or approved.
It is very important to us that you are able to have all personal matters taken care of, and we only deny requests in very urgent situations.
What happens if I have an emergency on the day of work?
If you are sick, have an urgent emergency to attend to, or are not able to come into work for any reason, we ask that you notify us immediately. The sooner the better, and please try to call at least two hours before your shift begins. This gives us plenty of time to inform your client about your absence.
What happens if I am running late?
If you are late for any reason, the same situation appliesâ€”please call to notify us as soon as possible, so we may inform your client immediately. We ask that you do everything possible to arrive on time, as Americans are very punctual and prefer that you be on time.
What time should I plan to arrive to work?
Our shifts actually begins at 5:30 p.m. however, please plan to arrive at least ten minutes before (at 5:20 p.m.). This will give you time to boot up your PC and begin your shift relaxed. The shift start time is the time that you will actually begin work, not the time that you should arrive! It is very important to be prepared and ready to begin work right at 5:30 p.m.
What if I donâ€™t understand what my client is saying? What if I have questions about communication, English, or American culture?
The AE team is here to answer any communication and English questions you may have. They are all native English speakers, born and raised in the USA, and able to answer any pronunciation questions, questions about what a phrase, word, or slang means, or any other issues you may face. We have encountered it all, and we love to help!
Who do I ask if I have questions about Skype, Basecamp, or other tools we use?
The AE team works with these tools, also, and will be able to answer any questions you have or guide you in the right direction. Additionally, your team leads or other team members may be able to answer your questions.