Some Tips for Hiring Remote Workers – Seize the Opportunity!

I was talking with a manager recently who was nervous about hiring people. He was anxious about onboarding, managing, and engaging with people that are not in a physical office. My response? Embrace this opportunity! With high unemployment rates across the nation, there is a lot of great talent available, and many are seeking out remote work. That person in Boise that you wouldn’t have interviewed before may be a perfect fit for your organization. I am encouraging my clients to embrace the remote workforce if they can. It opens up a whole new group of candidates to your business! Read on for some tips on hiring remote staff.

Remote work is all about independence and self-reliance, meaning that you need to look for talent that fits these qualities. When interviewing, you want to ask them if they have worked remotely before to get a sense of the familiarity the person has with accomplishing tasks without being supervised. However, even if this is a person that is new to remote work, they may still be motivated, so not having experience should not immediately exclude them. Instead, ask for examples of their previous work and ask them about their project management experience.

Make sure you are aware of the compliance issues with hiring outside of your area. Determine whether you will be hiring these people as full-time employees, freelancers, or using a staffing service to payroll them. While hiring remote workers can be a great opportunity to find new talent, you also need to make sure that you are following all federal, state, and local laws in the area where that person lives.

Similar to hiring a new local employee to your team, you should be prepared for an onboarding period to allow the worker to get familiar with your company and your products or services. Furthermore, there is always a learning curve when starting on a new project, which is only exacerbated when you are not working physically with a team. Be patient, provide milestones and feedback, and allow for some growing pains.

Given the challenges that a remote workforce may present, setting up weekly or bi-weekly calls with your new team members will help ease them into the new position. This is an opportunity to check in on their progress and to ensure that they understand their tasks and the expectations of their work, but also gives them a chance to ask questions about the company or work.

Make sure you are also getting to know these new employees on a personal level. What are they doing on the weekends? How can you help them? What motivates them? Many companies are doing virtual happy hours or game hours (check out the app www.houseparty.com for some ideas) to allow their staff some fun downtime and the ability to engage with each other outside of work.

As many companies around the world are rethinking their expectations of what their workforce looks like, you may be considering adding remote workers to your talent pool as well. At 425 HR we are experienced with talent acquisition and can help you build your remote workforce. Contact us today for more information or to book a consultation!

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