The Secrets of Recruiting Remote Employees6 min readReading Time: 4 minutes
The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the workplace and made remote work an accepted and expected practice. Many organisations started implementing remote work strategies due to the pandemic and some businesses have even taken an additional step by eradicating the culture of physical office altogether – creating a virtual team.
Corporations transitioning to remote work tend to benefit significantly when it comes to recruitment and employee satisfaction. Nonetheless, eliminating away the physical office and allowing workers to work remotely is undoubtedly a challenging undertaking. Substantial preparation and planning are required to bring this idea to life without harming the company culture and team productivity.
The benefits of building a remote team
Remote work brings many benefits to employees and their organisations. Employees enjoy a better life balance. Without having to commute, they gain extra time to dedicate to their personal interests and families. Moreover, the flexibility to choose how and when to work increases trust and autonomy, boosting employees’ creativity and commitment towards the organisation, which are intrinsically connected to self-satisfaction.
When it comes to recruitment, building a virtual team gives you access to top talent from all over the world, which can be a huge competitive advantage when talent is scarce. Your customers will also benefit from your global workforce, that can bring local insights and round-the-clock service. Be it the latest market trends in their country or in-depth knowledge of their culture, your global team can help you serve international customers in a better way.
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In addition to a boost in confidence job satisfaction, remote work can also increase your team’s productivity. Many companies that had their first remote work experiences due to the COVID-19 pandemic have opted to keep completely remote or at least flexible work arrangements after seeing the great results of their first remote experience. The increase in productivity can be explained by different factors. For instance, workers find that by distancing themselves from a hectic and disrupting traditional work environment, they can have more space to focus on their work and problem-solving. Other workers use the flexibility of the new work system to get their essential work done during their creative hours.
It has never been easier to build and keep a remote team. With a sudden boom in demand for remote work solutions, you can now choose the best technologies to support your team’s communication and operations in a remote arrangement. From time-zone calculators to online video calls and task management tools, your team has plenty of options to choose from and build the perfect remote tech stack.
What to look for when recruiting remote employees?
From being almost exclusive to cool tech companies, remote work became the norm in a world affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. With a new work system, come new challenges. One of them being hiring remotely and finding the best talent to support your business in this new way of working. These are some traits your team should look for when recruiting remote employees:
They focus on results over processes
One thing you will learn when you start working with a remote team is that you need employees who know to focus on results rather than processes. As you can’t obviously look over everyone’s shoulder, as a manager, you will need to be comfortable setting up goals and holding employees accountable for the goals, without micromanaging them. If you hire employees who understand that what matter are results, you’ll have less to worry about.
They are self-starters
While hiring a remote team, one of the most important traits to look for is the capability of an employee to be a self-starter. This is a crucial trait because while working remotely, employees don’t have the same level of support from a manager continuously hovering over them to ensure that they stay on the track and motivated. Remote workers should be able to self-motivate every day to be productive and complete their tasks in a timely manner.
They can complete a test project successfully
Even if your company has a first-class recruitment process, it should be adapted for remote hiring. You must have a good assessment system to identify the candidates that will better perform in a remote work system.
One of the best ways to assess how a candidate would perform as a remote employee is to assign them a test project. The candidates who are able to complete the project independently without asking for continuous help could be the best hires. Obviously, there are times when they might request additional information and request help, which is a good sign that indicates they know how to work collaboratively. But if they ask repetitive questions that could be found on the internet easily, that is a red flag. After all, a valuable skill of remote workers is independence and the ability to figure things out on their own.
Another tip is to look for candidates who have prior remote working experience. These candidates know exactly what to expect from a remote workplace. At times, new hires may agree that they are comfortable in working remotely, and might not realise until they actually start, that it is not a suitable option for them.
Are you ready to work with a remote team?
A remote team can bring many benefits for employees and organisations but it requires sustained and intensive attention with frequent collaboration for a fruitful outcome.
Effective remote teams are made of people who are able to initiate processes, pursue goals persistently, and anticipate requirements. They are highly autonomous, and accountable for their results, knowing when to look for guidance to be more productive.
The best remote workers are also expert at problem-solving. They know how to collaborate effectively with their colleagues and use technology both as a power multiplier and communication enabler.
Managers and senior employees also need special skills to succeed in a remote environment. Remote team managers must have operational methods to measure and manage daily productivity, in addition to mechanisms for being visible to their remote team.
Although remote work is being adopted due to the circumstances rather than strategic decision, its advantages far outweigh the possible hitches. The remote workforce is not only more result-driven and productive, but they are also equipped for professional growth and independence. When given the right tools and guidance, remote employees strive to produce quality work and are comparatively more likely to work with your organisation for a longer period of time. Allowing your team to work remotely even when the worst times of the pandemic are over will motivate them to thrive, and, consequently, your business will prosper as well.