Whether working from a physical office or a virtual workplace, productivity has been proven to stay the same. So why hire remotely? A Stanford University study has shown that companies can save up to $2000 per employee by hiring remote workers. But there is another element at play: employee happiness. A recent Gallup poll shows that employees who spend at least some of their time working remotely are more likely to be engaged in their jobs. And it has been consistently proven that employee engagement should be at the top of any company’s list if they want to increase profits.
So let’s talk about what you should be looking for when interviewing remote workers.
- Work environment
Ask them where they work and how. Let them tell you what their prime working conditions are, making note if they exhibit a behavioral commitment to their tasks. Pay attention to the details, for example, you’ll want to know whether they have a dedicated home office, what their work day looks like and if they have adequate internet connection.
Personality is a key factor. You want to look for someone who has a certain sense of autonomy. An independent thinker, who is also capable of investing in a team. High levels of communication, initiative, and organization are also important. In addition, ask about their technical capabilities. Remote work is heavily reliant on someone who can troubleshoot tech issues as they arise with very little help.
Pay close attention when hiring management. Look for upper level employees that have experience supervising remote staff – it often takes a unique skill-set that is developed over time. Look for accountability and emotional investment. Communication strategy is very different when dealing with a diverse team, which will ultimately make a sense of ownership very important.
- Be precise
What are you are looking for? Make sure any potential employees know what your teams’ needs are in terms of communication, availability and collaboration. Emphasize that you want a problem-solver who can optimize their own productivity. Be clear, and direct. It won’t serve you to dance around a topic – any virtual worker will need to know exactly what is expected of them upfront.
With remote offices on the upswing, it’s time to start redefining our hiring practices. Instituting a new HR directive, which allows for various types of workers, will ultimately allow you to tailor your recruitment efforts towards this new frontier. With luck and dedication, you’ll build a dedicated, profit-driven team.