Small Business Hiring Guide

6. How to Hire Remote Workers

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Running A Business

How to Hire Remote Workers

Jul 19, 2023 • 9 min read
Business Woman Working Remotely
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      While working in the office was once the norm, many workers are now seeking remote opportunities. The majority of employers are embracing this trend and moving to more remote operations, especially for new employees.

      However, there are many challenges with finding the right talent for remote work. It can be complex to get a sense of how someone will interact with your team and whether they will be the right fit. That’s why it’s essential to develop a method of hiring remote workers before you begin the process.

      How can hiring remote benefit a business?

      Hiring remote isn’t a new phenomenon. However, it is increasing in popularity. Statistics from the Society for Human Resource Management and Forbes  indicate that more than 50% of workers are seeking remote positions. Nearly 75% of all companies plan on providing remote opportunities for new hires. Both workers and employers recognize the benefits of remote work, and it appears that it is here to stay.

      Remote hiring expands your candidate base.

      Any company can reach the best potential candidates no matter where they live. Instead of being geographically limited, you now have an opportunity to reach out to job candidates around the world. This broadens your candidate base and allows you to find the perfect fit.

      Remote hiring saves money.

      The process of hiring a new employee can be expensive. Some companies must entertain multiple job candidates in person, which often requires fancy dinners, extensive interviews, and other promotional activities. Remote hiring, on the other hand, can take place over the computer and the rest of the experience can be avoided.

      Hiring remote employees reduces resource expenditure.

      No longer do companies have to pay for expensive building leases and lounge supplies like coffee and snacks. Similarly, workers don’t have to purchase professional clothing and spend time and money on a commute. In fact, in a study published by the National Institutes of Health, many employees reported that reduction of commute time is a primary factor in job satisfaction. Remote employees allow businesses and workers to save on resources.

      How to successfully hire remote employees.

      As with in-person hiring, there are strategies that can be used to find the right people to fill remote positions in an efficient manner. There’s no need to completely change the way your company hires employees. A few changes to your current process can help you adjust from in-person hiring to successful remote hiring, including the following.

      Write a clear job description.

      You need to have a clear understanding of what you expect from the position you’re hiring for. Write a job description that clearly indicates what the individual will be doing, including that it is a remote opportunity. You will also need to indicate if the candidate will need to travel to the office or elsewhere and the percentage of travel expected. A clear job description will help you narrow down the talent pool and speed up your hiring process.

      Look for candidates in the right places.

      There are many ways to find potential job candidates. You might use job boards, a recruiter, word of mouth, or other methods. It’s important to spread your net wide if you want a variety of diverse candidates. Some of these employee search platforms, including recruiters, can be costly. However, it is usually worth the expenditure to find the right candidate for your position.

      Create a strategy for remote video interviews.

      Since you’re hiring remotely, your interviews will also likely take place remotely. This can be challenging. Determine what platform you will use for interviews and ensure it is user-friendly for potential candidates. Consider time zones when scheduling interviews. If your candidate is several time zones away, you will want to find a time that works best for both of you.

      The questions you ask and tasks you request from the candidate can be very similar to those that you would present in a traditional, in-person interview. However, you will want to be sure they are comfortable with remote work, including interaction with your team online. Finding people who have previous remote work experience is often a good idea. In addition, your interview strategy should highlight the expectations of your position and your organization.

      Respect the candidate’s time.

      Some of the most common problems job candidates have with remote interviews involve time. Interviewers often run late or schedule inconvenient meeting times. Interviewers may expect the applicant to lead the conversation, which can lead to a lot of silence and wasted time. To correct these problems, interviewers should respect the candidate’s time and be timely. They should also have a meeting outline ready prior to the interview.

      Interview questions that you should ask all remote workers.

      Interview questions should focus on what you cannot easily determine from a resume or LinkedIn profile. You are trying to determine if the candidate can work well as a remote worker and if they would fit in well with your team.

      You may also need to determine if the individual has specific technical knowledge, but for the most part, remote workers should be proficient at their potential jobs before accepting them. Training can be difficult for remote positions.

      Here are some questions that employers should consider asking all potential remote workers:

      • What is your experience working remotely?
      • How do you tackle a big project as a remote worker?
      • Do you have a plan for growing and developing your skills as a remote worker?
      • Are there any requirements in the job description you cannot complete as a remote worker?
      • Do you anticipate any challenges as a remote worker?
      • Are you able to interact well with a team online?
      • Do you have any limitations regarding internet access or hardware?
      • Do you have any work from home productivity hacks that help you?
      • What motivates you and keeps you focused as a remote worker?
      • What resources do you use to stay on the cutting edge of business news and trends?
      • What’s your approach to remote communication and collaboration?
      • How much direction do you need to get started on a project?
      • Do you prefer active feedback from management or minimal supervision?

      These questions will help you better understand the potential candidate, as well as how they will work with your team and on projects.

      What to do when you’ve found a great candidate.

      Once you find the right person for your position, you need to make things official and welcome the remote worker to your organization. You should present them with the job opportunity in a similar fashion that you would an in-person candidate. That might mean a job offer over the phone or via email. If the position is more formal, you may also send them a letter via mail.

      When they accept the offer, you will need a solid onboarding process to get them started. This should include all the traditional new hire paperwork, but in digital format. There is software that allows new hires to sign and fully execute this paperwork online. Take the time to ensure everything is processed properly. Otherwise, you could have problems with financial or governmental requirements down the road.

      Remote hiring can greatly benefit a business.

      Not only are workers looking for remote opportunities, but many businesses are seeking remote employees as well. There are many benefits to both parties, including saving time, money, and resources. Additionally, remote hiring allows everyone to find the right job or candidate outside of their geographic area.

      If you are looking to grow your business through remote hiring, you should act today. Learn more about small business loans from Lendio.

      About the author
      Brandy Abalos

      Brandy Abalos is a licensed attorney, content strategist, and marketing consultant for small businesses. She uses SEO tools to develop strong digital content for audiences who are learning how to navigate complex topics in law and business. When she is not writing, she seeks adventures with her three children, partner, and two corgis in Ohio.

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