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How to Hire and Onboard Remote Teams

When Covid-19 hit the globe, it was followed by a massive shift to remote work. Many companies decided on the work-from-home setup to decrease, if not eliminate, in-person gatherings in the office to comply with social distancing measures.

But some companies have already been hiring remote workers even before the current health crisis. This is because remote work has multiple benefits, with one major example being the reduction in business costs from not having to lease an office. Despite its many fiscal benefits, remote hiring isn’t without its share of challenges, though. One particular challenge occurs during the recruitment process.

Identifying the kind of talent that fits companies’ needs can be challenging even when the position is for an in-office role and the entire hiring process is done face to face. These days, conducting interviews online presents its own limitations. Companies need to be even more thorough when it comes to vetting candidates.

To ensure you give every applicant a reasonable shot at the job opportunity and that the remote worker you hire will be the right fit, here are some guidelines you can follow:

How to Hire Remote Workers

1. Select a recruitment and hiring tool

You’re looking for the best talent and you’re likely to find them if you widen the scope of your search. Recruitment and hiring tools are helpful in this regard. These platforms reach many candidates and make it possible for you to have options that aren’t as limited compared with other types of recruitment strategies.

Recruitment and hiring tools also allow you to refine your search by setting filters such as qualifications and work experience. You can also place job advertisements that can attract interested and qualified applicants not just on these job search platforms, but on other platforms as well.

Disseminating the information that you’re hiring is the crucial first step of the recruitment process. You need to choose a platform or tool that can effectively send the message to the people best suited to what you’re looking for.

2. Be open to personal recommendations

If you already have a remote team and are hoping to grow it, you can open up job opportunities in your company to them first. Aside from you, your team knows your company best. They then might know people that can be the right fit for the job and you can encourage them to tap into their network.

While personal recommendations won't—and shouldn’t—guarantee an automatic hire, people recommended to you will have already been vetted by someone who has experience with your company culture as well as the possible demands of the role you’re trying to hire for.

3. Conduct video or call interviews

Interviewing candidates allows you to gain insights about them, their interests, and expectations about the job. This stage in the process will give you a better gauge for how well they will fit in terms of expertise and personality. This is also a good time to learn how well a candidate will communicate.

Communication is crucial in remote work. As your team might be in different time zones, and certainly not in the same office space, constant communication won’t be easy nor frequent. The remote candidate must be diligent enough to communicate effectively from the start.

4. Run a test

While interviews can give you insight on how your candidates fit the job, nothing will be more telling of their skills than an actual example of it. Put your top candidates to a test by letting them do a task related to the position they’re applying for.

Try to set up the same limitations, quotas, or timelines they will be expected to follow with their actual work. By doing this, you can keep the test as realistic as possible, allowing you to identify which candidates can perform well in the role you are hiring for.

5. Contact references before making the final decision

Talking to your candidates and observing them work significantly narrows your pool of candidates. Before making the final pick, though, you can do a final check on your top contenders by contacting their references. This way, you can know more about the character of your prospective hire or how they performed in other professional environments.

Virtual Onboarding and the New Hire Experience

It’s important to create a conducive work environment for every team member, especially those who have been recently hired and are learning about the processes and systems in your organization. Onboarding remote teams can influence how collaborative they become, so it’s important that you do it right.

Welcome new teammates by setting up a time where they can introduce themselves and meet the whole team. Allow them to familiarize themselves with the workflow, and if necessary and feasible, have somebody from the team assist them. These can be done in the first few days so that the new member can acclimate to work and the team.

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