7 Steps on How to Hire Your Remote Team

Job Applicant Giving Printed CV

The opportunity to work remotely started years before the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. As we continue adjusting to the ‘new normal’ way of life, employers have seen the benefits of working remotely not just for their business but for their staff as well. The question is, with the opportunity to select talent from around the globe, how will you hire the best remote team for your business? 

If you’re new to the field of remote work, here are 7 steps you can do to find the right people for your organization:

1. Determine your company’s hiring needs

Before you start hiring your remote team, ask yourself: Will my company benefit? Do I have the right tools in place for this setup? 

Assess your organization’s business structure and consider which tasks can be done by remote and in-office employees.

As you scour the internet looking for remote talent, aside from assessing their skills and experiences, make sure they also have the right traits - some may have a hard time staying motivated and productive with little to no supervision.

2. Build a strong digital presence

Having a strong online presence isn’t only for social media marketing. It can also be used to attract top-level candidates. When you’re looking for remote employees, remember that some applicants will be in different cities or even countries. The best way for them to notice you is through online platforms.

Check your company website and social media pages. Are they up-to-date and active? Do they look trustworthy and credible? Do they show your brand personality and company culture? Try adding some employee testimonials and posts that describe a typical workday - these types of content can help potential applicants visualize being a part of your organization.

3. Be clear with your job offers

When making a job post, make sure that everything is explicit and detailed. 

Here’s a couple of things to indicate when making a job post:

  • State whether the terms are remote or hybrid
  • Be clear about the qualifications, skills and experience required
  • The number of hours they need to work or if there is a fixed schedule 

Most employers tend to ask for too much in their job description - doing this can intimidate potential candidates. Encourage them to submit their resume via your job ad.

Once you have the job post ready, post it on some of the top internet job boards for remote work. You can also join social media groups on Facebook and Slack.

When interviewing candidates, give them a brief explanation of your company and an overview of the position they’re applying for. This will help your candidates see if your company is the right fit for their schedule and lifestyle. 

Another option is to engage a recruitment agency. This can speed up the process as they’ll do all the pre-screening requirements for you. Just tell them what skills, traits and experience you’re looking for. 

4. Choose and interview potential candidates

Once your job ad is out, expect resumes to start flooding in. Review each candidate’s skills and expertise before scheduling an interview, remove under-qualified applicants, and be on the lookout for must-have qualities in remote employees.

In the interview, use different synchronous and asynchronous methods like pre-recorded interviews, video resumes, chatbots, live chats, or video calls. This is to observe how well the applicants can handle various modes of communication typically used in a remote working environment: 

  • Do they have good oral and writing skills? 
  • Are they comfortable using different software like Zoom or Skype?

Be sure to ask the right questions, especially those related to issues relevant to remote work: 

  • What are they going to do in the event of a power outage or technical issue? 
  • How do they stay productive at home? 
  • How do they avoid distractions?

Moreover, discuss your company’s remote working policy and ask them beforehand if they’re comfortable with it. 

Due to the various aspects that need to be assessed, there is no one-size-fits-all approach when hiring candidates. Find an approach that will suit the needs of your organization and applicants.

5. Check candidates’ references

Similar to hiring on-site employees, it’s important to ask for references when it comes to hiring remote employees, too. These references can help you gain more insights into the applicants’ work ethic and experience. You can also use this step to learn about their soft skills, working style, and verify all the details stated by the applicant in his/her resume and interview.

Remember to ask for professional references, preferably those who have worked with the applicants from a managerial position. They may not necessarily be remote employers or clients, especially if the candidate doesn’t have any prior remote working experience. In-office managers and supervisors can also provide you with information about the applicant that will help you decide if they are likely to be a good fit for your company.

6. Offer competitive compensation and benefits

Because you can’t provide remote workers with the usual perks that you can offer in-office employees, you have to be creative when it comes to benefits. Keep in mind that you’re up against companies from different parts of the world. 

For better employee management, you can also outsource the role of 'the employer' to an Employer of Record (EOR) that will successfully manage several responsibilities relating to your employees, including payroll processing, workers' health and safety, and compliance with laws.

To give you some ideas, you can give generous vacation plans since most remote employees tend to work longer hours.

As for the compensation, consider the employee’s location. Countries have different costs of living, so it’s important to base the salary packages on their needs. If your company can’t match another company’s offer, compensate by giving employees professional development opportunities like online courses and workshops. This will tell them that your company is interested in potential and growth - not just immediate results.

7. Test your new setup

If you’ve filled all the slots of your remote team but want to make sure they match your long-term goals, placing new hires under a temporary probationary period is a common practice in traditional office arrangements but can be applied in remote working setups as well. 

This will give you a better chance to see your employees’ skills and potential if they are a good fit for your business long-term. 

Final thoughts

What used to be a niche trend has now become a new lifestyle preferred by many. Advancements in technology and the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic have made it easier for employees to say goodbye to the traditional in-office setup. 

As entrepreneurs and business owners, it’s time to be open to this change. Exploring the world of remote workers will give you the best chance to look for the right applicants. However, once you hire the best remote team you can possibly form, be sure to find ways to keep them. Make them feel valued and build a culture that embraces and supports them and their development.

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