It's important for any business to pick the right people to join their team. Who works for your company will determine the efficiency of tasks completed and how quickly your business reaches its goals.
For remote teams especially, hiring the right candidates is crucial. You don't have the luxury of speaking face-to-face to resolve issues, tackle customer service and bring new ideas to the table. However, that doesn't mean your remote business can't still handle issues and work as a team. It just means you need to refine your strategy for attracting high-quality hires.
When you run a business with employees from all over the globe, the world is your oyster. According to a recent study, 70% of professionals work remotely at least one day per week, and that number is on the rise. For remote businesses looking to hire, they have a wider pool of candidates with unique experiences and perspectives to choose from. On the other hand, it can prove more challenging to hire the right fit because they can't meet with them in person.
That’s why it's essential to have a plan for how to find the right employees to work for your remote company, which includes:
Determining what you're looking for in a candidate
Telling candidates what to expect from the position
Looking in different places
Setting up a refined interview process
Here is more on these four essential tips so your next hire is spot on and ready for the job.
1. Determine the basics of what your remote business is looking for
Before you even put your job posting online or spread the word that you're hiring, you need to have a solid list of qualities and requirements you're looking for in your next employee. That means using specificity and breaking down what your company needs to reach its goals and meet its deadlines.
Hiring for a remote team is vastly different than hiring for a local company in more ways than one. If anything, the hiring process for remote employees proves even more rigorous and thorough because you have to determine if someone is the right fit without ever meeting them. This requires you to map out the business' needs and decide if your candidate has what it takes to work remotely.
For example, you might create a bullet-pointed list of requirements that looks like this:
Friendly, positive attitude
Excellent time management
Responsible and accountable
Each business will require different skillsets, but remote businesses especially need these disciplines because the environment differs from that of a local job. This list is a basic outline that shows you're looking for someone who has what it takes to work from home without the need for micromanagement. Refer back to it when filing through applications so that, if any candidates do not possess these basic qualities it takes to work from home, you can move on.
2. Tell potential candidates what to expect
Just like candidates should tell you point blank what your company can expect from them working for you, you need to do the same with your job posting and throughout the entire hiring process. If you aren't clear about the requirements of the job and the expectations of new hires, you'll end up hiring the wrong fit.
There's no room for vague descriptions or job duties when it comes to your job listing. Get straight to the point about what it is the company is looking for, the number of hours employees need to put in, the duties they're expected to perform, and more so you find the best possible person for the job.
You can refine the type of applicants you receive before ever posting a job listing by adding these details to the hiring section of your website. Zapier dedicates an entire page of their site to inform potential candidates about what they're looking for in new hires, what the job entails, the perks, and why people should apply.
In doing so, they're weeding out people who might consider applying, read the requirements, but then decide the company isn't right for them. They're also attracting the right candidates by stating in plain terms exactly what they're looking for. Being specific in your search for the right hire is the key to finding the right fit, so don't be afraid to narrow down your search from the beginning.
3. Look in different places
No company should limit itself when it comes to hiring new employees, but this is especially true for remote businesses. Since you can hire people from around the world who come from all walks of life, you can use the opportunity to bring in fresh, new ideas from different perspectives that you would've missed out on otherwise.
Take advantage of the fact that you can search pretty much anywhere for new hires and boost the potential of your business growth. Most companies start their job search by asking their current employees if they recommend anyone they know because they already trust their existing workforce. This is a solid place to start; however, don't get too caught up in who knows who if you feel like you can find a better fit outside of references.
Consider posting a listing to different job boards that receive tons of traffic from people actively searching for remote positions:
FlexJobs: One of the most popular remote job boards around, the high volume of applicants alone ensures you'll receive applications. It comes with geo-targeting and an applicant tracking system for your convenience.
WeWorkRemotely: With more than 2.5 million monthly users, your listing is likely to gain traction and get attention from the right candidates.
AngelList: Built for startups, this job board is perfect if your business is brand new and looking for its first remote hires.
Remote.co: This remote job board lists opportunities across all fields and industries.
JobSpresso.co: JobSpresso allows you to choose from different packages according to your budget so you find the right hire for the right price.
It's also wise to scour social media to find your next hire, though finding candidates this way takes more vetting and searching. Use social media to let people know you're hiring and link directly to your job posting, especially Twitter and LinkedIn, which are swarming with people looking for remote work. You might end up surprised by the applications you receive and how well those candidates fit your description.
4. Refine the interview process
Once you pick a few applications that stand out, it's time to begin the formal interview process. This is where you get to know your applicants from more than just their resume and cover letter and can determine whether or not they'd be a good fit for your company culture, mission and values.
Every remote company should have a refined interview process they use to narrow down prospects and determine the best one. In the end, you might find that you're stuck between two great candidates but can only choose one. Having a set process in place will allow you to make that tough decision and choose the right person.
For example, Buffer, a completely remote company, shares their interview process on their website and breaks it down into three separate interviews:
Culture and values: In the first two weeks of their six-week interview process, they hold interviews based on the culture and values of their candidates. Since this is a core part of their business, Buffer places extra emphasis on the values of their hires, which is why it's the first step of their interviewing process.
Experience: Experience varies greatly among candidates even if they're applying for the same position. This part of their process digs into the technical aspects of whether or not they can get the job done adequately and if they have enough knowledge and expertise to do so.
Final wrapup: This is where the search narrows down to the last few candidates. This last interview is for asking any other questions that don't already have answers and asking about specific scenarios and what the candidate would do in a given situation to gauge how they handle conflict.
Your interview process may not look exactly like this and that’s okay. The point is to hold interviews and ask questions based on the company's goals and what it's trying to achieve. As long as you align the two, you should be able to find the candidate that’s right for you.
Hiring new employees for your remote workforce is an exciting endeavor. You have the opportunity to add a positive asset to your team so you all can work together to achieve the company’s goals, meet its requirements and have fun while doing so from anywhere in the world. It can be a stressful, sometimes complicated process, but if you have a strategy in place to help you, it'll be a lot easier to find the right fit.