The art of remotely recruiting teleworkersBrian - January 5, 2021
How does the recruitment process look when many companies are assigning their staff to telecommute to comply with the containment measures in force? Are the criteria for hiring employees who work remotely different from those who work locally? And how can managers welcome new hires when everyone is confined to home?
Here is a short guide to finding and recruiting teleworkers without having to meet them.
Where can I find teleworkers?
Job search websites are one of the best ways to post vacancies and attract new employees. But this comprehensive strategy often results in you getting too many resumes from applicants who don’t fit the job. You also need to consider candidates’ suitability for telecommuting and adapting to your organizational culture, which is not always easy to establish, even when you can spend time with them in the same room.
When you need to recruit teleworkers quickly, try these other methods as well:
Recruitment agencies for specialized personnel.
Contact a recruiting agency for specialized personnel like Robert Half. After all, quickly finding the right people to fill your vacancies, including telecommuting positions, is her area of expertise. Its talented pool of employees includes highly skilled professionals who can work remotely from anywhere. Besides, Robert Half offers solutions, including secure virtual workspaces, that provide secure access to required data and applications, regardless of company profile.
Enlist the help of talented employees who have left your company on good terms: people who you think are disciplined and organized enough to telecommute and have the skills you are looking for. There is nothing wrong with calling these former employees or sending them a personalized email with a great job offer. For those who have taken a well-deserved retirement, this is a good opportunity for them to keep busy while staying at home for a long time. For people with jobs elsewhere, consider making them an offer at a higher salary than their current position.
Employee referrals are a great way to recruit the right people to telecommute for your business. Also, the appreciation that a team member shows for your company is an additional reason that will encourage his friend or former colleague to accept your job offer.
Ideal skills for teleworkers
But teleworking isn’t for everyone. You want employees who won’t need a lot of support or direct supervision. Here are the six strengths of a reliable teleworker:
- Technical expertise – Obviously, your new hire should be familiar with common cloud computing software, as well as audio and video conferencing platforms like Zoom, Skype, and GoToMeeting.
- Digital Security – Must also understand the importance of VPNs (Virtual Private Networks), two-step or multi-factor authentication, and other best practices in data security. Don’t let online security be compromised by assigning your team to telecommute.
- Initiative – When reviewing job applications, and during interviews, look for applicants who have a sense of initiative. These people are adept at identifying a need and then taking appropriate action without being told what to do.
- Problem Solving – Although teleworking feels like working in silos, teleworkers have to fulfill several functions. The ideal teleworker knows how to solve a problem before bringing it to the next level.
- Communication – Face-to-face interviews have the advantage of being able to pay attention to body language and visual cues. In the context of telecommuting, look to hire candidates who can speak clearly, write unambiguously, and listen attentively as much of the communication takes place via email, phone, and instant messaging.
- Collaboration – Even though all your employees work remotely, the collaboration between your department and the company is essential to stay united. In fact, showing a sense of collegiality is more important than ever.
Useful interview questions for teleworkers
After reviewing the CVs, you are ready to meet the shortlisted candidates – virtually of course. It is best to conduct your interviews by videoconference, not only to see how candidates present themselves but also to assess whether their computer equipment and time range are suitable for telecommuting. Here are some questions you could add to your list of interview questions:
- What is your professional history as a teleworker?
- How do you stay on course and stay focused on the tasks at hand when working from home?
- How do you stay engaged and motivated for long periods of time without in-person interactions with your colleagues?
- Tell me about the platforms you use (or have used) to collaborate with your colleagues remotely.
- What are you doing to minimize communication problems in emails and instant messages?
- What are the three qualities that make you an effective teleworker?
- What are the biggest challenges you have to overcome to work remotely?
- What is your approach to work-life balance when working from home?
While managing teleworkers may not sound like what you had in mind for your business, it is the new normal, at least in the short term. Help your business meet this challenge by hiring the employees who are more likely to be successful at telecommuting, and then fully integrating these new telecommuters into your team.