You’ve probably heard employees who work remotely are more productive. No wonder an increasing number of them are given the opportunity to work from home. Even if the advantages of remote work are debatable, you have this one perfect project. You’re tempted to work with a remote team. It’s techy, it requires people to focus on specific tasks, and their productivity can be easily measured. It’s time to recruit your first remote team and see if remote work is all it’s said to be.
One caveat. Hiring a remote team is a bit different from the kind of recruiting you’re used to. You’ll need to adapt your recruitment process to the demands of the worldwide web. You’ll need to find the best remote workers, vet them, and make sure they can deliver.
One of the key advantages of hiring remote teams is that the whole recruitment process can be wrapped up in a couple of days. So, if you want to really capitalize on this, it’s best to steer clear of major job boards. Experts aren’t too keen on them (e.g., Are Job Boards Outdated?)
Too many replies, too little time. You want quality not quantity.
Great candidates are few and far between. But there’s always a chance you’ve still got some on file. Look them up. They’ve already been vetted by you, so reaching out to them would be the fastest way to secure talent.
No success? Time to ask around. Let’s be honest, referrals work best. Recruitment statistics confirm every HR professional’s intuition: employees who come from referrals stick around longer than candidates hired through major job boards. But here’s the catch. We won’t tell you to use those massive job boards. Here’s where you should look instead—
The number of niche job boards is staggering. Pretty much any industry has at least one dedicated website. Just check out this list of 100+ job boards by proven.com.
If you’re simply looking for general remote-work-oriented sites, you might want to give these a try:
But these don’t target specific industries. Here’s a selection of a few high-quality boards that should meet your expectations:
Now, let’s turn to social recruiting. If even the most niche job boards seem like something too general for you, let’s get back to the basics. LinkedIn is perfect for reaching out to passive candidates. There’s a lot you can do with the basic account, but if you’re serious about seeking out the best talent, you might want to switch over to a recruiter account. It will let you be more specific in your search.
However, even the basic setup will let you find great candidates.
Here’s an example.
Let’s say you’re looking for a talented copywriter. You need them to write in English and Spanish. You’re fine with bringing on board someone with two years of experience. It’s all about their samples in the end, right?
Do a standard keyword search. In our example, the most appropriate keywords include:
copywriter or writer, remote, remotely
Chances are, the list you get is much too long. This is where advanced search comes in:
Languages: English, Spanish
Experience: 2-5 years
Another great advantage of using LinkedIn is access to specific groups. It won’t take a lot of time to pinpoint groups that would suit your needs. Again, use LinkedIn’s search function. You might even use Google to find the right hubs. Don’t focus on local groups. You’re looking for remote workers after all. International groups make perfect sense. Post your job offer there.
For a quick primer, read our Job Ad Dos and Don’ts.
Job ads targeting remote employees aren’t too different from any other job ads. But writing another generic job posting will sabotage your work. You want to make sure you get several solid candidates rather than hundreds of applicants who don’t really care what they do as long as they can do it from home.
Follow the best practices in recruitment. You will feel you’re going out on a limb, but it will be worth it.
Remote work requires a bit more tech-savviness than your regular nine-to-five. Once your candidates complete the task to your satisfaction, you’ll know what performance to expect from them. Now it’s time for that interview. Prepare a semi-structured list of interview questions and answers you’d like to hear (or not!) For the interview, use your go-to video conference tool. Skype? Google Hangouts? Use whatever you use on a daily basis with your team. No need to switch over to your candidates preferred software.
Now you know how to reach out to candidates, attract them with an appropriate ad, and sieve out sub-par applicants.
Remember, time is of the essence. Both for you and the candidates. If you want to reel in the best of the best, you have to act fast.
Thank you for all the tips you provided. When hiring a remote worker to fill an opening, requires you to dig deeper. While it may require patience and effort, it is for sure worth it. I am working with remote teams all over the world. I’d say time difference is the biggest challenge.
It’s important in any program, especially agile programs, to have solid rapport across the team. Personal connection builds trust, minimizes missed expectations, eases self-organization, and boosts morale. I think the human connection is very important in distributed teams and that’s why I suggest you build periodical team buildings.
The first challenge is training the team to understand that, when decisions are made, they need to be communicated. Sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to forget!
I’ve been working from home all week because of the weather here and I have been way more productive than usual! I think its good for employers to assess the work that has to be done and really define what can be done from home and what can’t so they can really evaluate if they should be leveraging all the benefits of a remote team!