Every employee that you hire should be able to perform equally well, regardless of where they work - at home or in the office. When it comes to participation and contribution, there shouldn't be any difference. However, hiring remote employees process can't be just copied from the traditional one. Potential remote workers aren't able to participate in the same selection processes, they are interested in different kinds of benefits, and the scope of what the company can offer (and ask for in return) is entirely different for remote team members.
If you want to attract and keep the very best remote employees, and the competition is pretty high now, you need to keep up with the latest trends. Remote work is on the rise, and the market is more competitive than ever. Make sure that you are recruiting the very best remote workers by following this guide.
Step 1: Showcase your company and all of the perks and benefits
If you want to hire the best, you need to be the best. But what if you are, but remote workers don't know it? Spreading the world in the virtual space isn't as easy as it may seem. Your first step is to build a strong employer brand that reflects the perks and benefits as well. Create a list of values, talk to your other remote employees and see what they like about the company.
After that, create a campaign that showcases all of that. Of course, every marketing effort should be done online, preferably on websites that a typical remote worker usually visits.
Creating a strong employer brand won't happen overnight, but you need to start somewhere. This strategy takes more time than any other, but it brings the best results. By making sure that you have a solid employer brand you will attract those who are really aligned with your culture, goals, and values.
Don't be afraid of being honest and vulnerable, discuss your struggles, challenges, and ultimately your successes. The more you reveal, the better are the chances that you will attract people who fit your culture and who will be a great contribution to the company.
Although you are looking for remote workers, "word of mouth" is still the best advertising method there is. In addition to launching a campaign, ask for recommendations from your top employees. If they have a friend or a former colleague that they would like to bring onboard offer them a reward. That way everybody wins, and your recruitment will be that much easier.
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Step 2: Communicate your job opening clearly - the good and the bad
If you fail to mention the potential downsides of a position in your remote job ad or during an interview process later on you might realize that you hired someone that can't handle them. And that just means you wasted a lot of resources - time and money, and now you have to start over. No position is perfect, remote or not. The difference is that when you hire globally, chances are your potential candidates won't have a friend they can ask for more information. They can only know what you tell them, so make sure you are telling them the whole truth.
When you post your ad on job boards, list everything the position entails. Your remote job description should be detailed so that every job seeker knows what a typical workday looks like. That way your new hires can decide for themselves if they are fit for the role. Afterward, you can design interview questions that help you test how fit they are for the role.
Your job ad should paint the picture of your company so that your potential new employees will get the "this is how we work" vibe after reading it. Company culture, everyday activities, teams, and departments. If you don't put everything in the job posting, at least let them know where they can get more information or create an external know-how resource. But have in mind, this is not the time for templates. The ad should definitely stand out - in content and in form as well.
Read more about how to create a remote job ad that stands out.
Step 3: Look for untypical methods of recruitment
In order to hire remote employees you need to post a job ad - but don't let that be the only thing you do! There are many methods you can use. Once you have included the referrals, use a couple of other sources as well.
For once, you can use LinkedIn - search for candidates, post a job ad or publish an interesting article. If you want to attract passive candidates, that often turn out to be a great fit, ask one of your top employees to be a guest on a podcast or a webinar. If they talk about their work experience, the work-life balance that you offer, and the great relationships you have in the company, you are bound to get a good candidate or two.
Step 4: Design a transparent and thoughtful interview process
One thing that remote companies often fail to understand is that hiring starts much earlier than they have their first contact with the candidate. Social media, former employees, corporate social responsibility... All of that builds the employer brand, and once the person accepts an interview, they already have an idea about the company.
During the hiring process, the impression they get should be flattering. Every recruiter should have in mind how awkward can video interviews turn out to be. In order to avoid that make sure that you have given your candidate all of the information before the video call. Allow time and space for their comments and questions and try to make them feel as comfortable as possible.
Video conferencing is the reality of almost every worker today, however, not everyone is used to them. Using Skype, Zoom, or Microsoft Teams, discuss the open position with your potential new employee like you are doing a face-to-face interview. The approach that the recruiter has is the one the candidate will mimic - so keep an eye on your nonverbal queues and the energy you are transmitting. If you leave a good impression, it will last even if you decide to reject them.
Don't forget about the biggest issues for remote interviews - time zones, equipment, and dedicated time. There is nothing worse than a confused, unprepared recruiter, whose headset keeps failing during calls.
Read more about how to conduct a remote job interview.
Step 5: Create a tailor-made offer based on their needs and values
Most employees believe in a one-size-fits-all approach. However, even for remote positions, this really isn't the best option. Depending on a lot of factors, your potential employees can have very different ideas about what is important for them - do you invest in their home office, how flexible is the schedule, are they expected to be on Slack all of the time...
If you dedicate some time during your interview process to find out more about your candidate, and if you share that insight with the hiring manager, you will be able to create an offer that is more attractive than anything they've ever experienced. Instead of offering them a boilerplate deal, figure out what are their needs, and find ways to fulfill them.
Why is this important? Because if you don't someone else will. Building loyalty is hard for big companies, it's hard for startups, it's hard all around. During this pandemic, everyone's gotten a bit more skeptical, closeted, and distanced. Release some of this tension, as well as their thoughts and potential struggles about remote working, by giving them a tailor-made offer.
This kind of approach also leaves you with a lot of satisfied candidates, even when you reject them. All of them are potential employees! Make sure that you have asked their permission to be in the talent pool, so you can contact them in the future.
It might seem like a lot of work, but actually, being treated fairly and leaving a good impression is the reason why you will attract even more remote employees and why you won't have any issues hiring the best ones. Although it's a virtual world, the word still travels fast!
Once the recruitment part is over, the journey of your new employee is just beginning. Make sure they become a productive and dedicated part of the team by creating the very best virtual onboarding process.