Times are changing when it comes to the workforce, and there’s no better time than now to hire remote employees. Whether you’re planning on building a full team of remote staff or simply just thinking of adding the option, you’ll open your workplace to several benefits. Here are tips on how to hire and sustain a team that will thrive.

Why Hire Remote Employees?

1. Increased levels of productivity.

Remote workers are actually more productive because they can work alone. When a person is working from home, they are shielded from distractions that can take place in an office everyday such as impromptu meetings or conversations with coworkers. Instead, they can focus on the task at hand without interruption. Also, not everyone is most productive between the hours of 8 to 5. Some employees will do their best work late at night.


2. The talent pool widens.

When you hire people who need to come into the office, you’re restricting the talent pool to one geographical area. Remote workers can be hired from anywhere in the world thanks to technology. Sure, you won’t have the same kind of company culture as you would if everyone worked in the same office, but that doesn’t mean your company culture will be inferior to a traditional one. It may even be better!


3. For employee retention, there’s no place like home.

One of the biggest appeals of working remotely is freedom. By letting employees begin a project, finish it at their own speed, then use the rest of their time to either complete more projects or work on improving their skills, you’re aiding in employee retention. This promotes happiness, less chance of burnout, less stress and balance for your workers.


4. You will attract driven employees.

In many cases, remote workers make a first impression through their work, and then the interview comes later. The type of person who is able to work remotely, manage their own time and put themselves out there enough to be noticed is the type of worker you probably want on your team.

Hire With New Techniques In Mind

Hiring remote employees can be a unique process compared to hiring in-house employees. By knowing the proper recruitment techniques and interviewing strategies, you can get a head start on finding the perfect fit. Be on the lookout for a solid social media presence, foreign work experience, an interest in personal projects and creativity.


By choosing a candidate with previous remote experience, you can ensure that they have a better understanding of what it takes to work and communicate away from a physical workplace, and it requires less of an adjustment than a new remote worker. Since the candidate won’t be part of the immediate office environment, their creativity and ability to adapt in many different situations is essential. Looking for signs of creativity is important in the recruiting process so you’re able to eliminate those accustomed to single tasks, set work times and a traditional office environment. Keep in mind that no single set of rules applies for every organization, so put in the extra time to find the person who is most compatible.


Interviewing is the final stage of the screening process before the hire. Get a feel for how familiar they are with the remote world of work, or if they only have experience with phone calls, emails and video chats. Ask them how they plan to stay involved with the company when barriers that naturally come with telecommuting present themselves. In addition, dig into communication styles and see how they perform.


A candidate’s talents, competency, conversation and approach to working with others are all important factors that should be observed while interviewing.

Onboarding

Once the candidate has been hired, onboarding them into your workforce is the next step. This can mean more work since the new employee won’t physically be present at the office. Use collaboration tools such as whiteboarding software and screen sharing to help make each employee feel part of the circle.


Remote hires can provide special challenges (and opportunities) in building your team. You should bring the new team members to the office on occasion if that’s a possibility, but otherwise utilize video chats to allow them to get acquainted with co-workers. Make them feel welcome and follow up by gathering feedback to refine your onboarding process.

Management

Of course, managing a remote employee will be much different than managing a concentrated one due to the lack of interaction. Managing remotely requires rigorous and disciplined communication, which means utilizing the right online communication platforms are essential. Research which ones would be ideal for your organization.


In addition, it’s crucial to set expectations, goals and timelines. Ideally, the first in-depth discussion about what you’re looking for would take place during onboarding. But these discussions should continue throughout each employee’s tenure–anywhere from weekly to monthly. Be sure they know what they should be accomplishing during any given week, long-term goals, whom to go to with issues, how many hours they should be working each week and availability levels.

Creating a distributed workforce can potentially take more time and energy than a centralized workforce, but it’s becoming common in today’s working world. By stepping out of your company’s comfort zone, you may go places you’ve never been before.