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5 ways to hire great remote workers

Updated: Aug 26



The workforce going remote has become an undeniable fact of 2020 but in reality isn’t a new concept. In fact, a recent BBC article showed a country like the Netherlands has had 14.7% of its workforce working partially remote in their jobs for many years. To add to that remote working at least once a week has grown over 100% since 2010 according to a Hubspot survey.


The new norm is here, but what does that mean for hiring without the luxury of first meeting someone in person, showing them where and how you work?


Let’s explore 5 simple ways to turbocharge your remote hiring process, and ensure you can find the best people and engage them properly:


1. Nail your sourcing


Even as the world returns fully or partially to the office, remote work will become a key part of our working culture. In particular for recruiters catering to candidates who want to work remotely almost exclusively or as a large part of their job. With communities like NomadList already to connect remote workers to communities of like minded people, companies now also need to identify these people. Traditional job boards like LinkedIn and Monster won’t cut it for these remote savvy workers in the future.


You’ll need to start sourcing on platforms like:


Be sure to emphasise your employee value proposition when you write a job description for this new breed of worker! They will care a lot about non-monetary perks like flexibility.

2. Proactively help remote working


It’s a fact that not everyone is yet comfortable with how to work fully or partially remotely. When bringing on someone new into your company think about how you can help them learn what virtual team means for your company and how to make the most out of it.


This is a recruitment marketing task, focused around building content. As part of your employer brand, build content about your company’s remote work culture, how to set up at home for success and maybe even incentives/financial support to get the right working environment.


Zapier has been fully remote from their inception and has a content hub dedicated to these exact topics. Not only does it provide a good content source for their SEO, it allows current and future hires to realise how to make a job at the company work for them.



3. Define your ideal candidate

What does your ideal team member look like? I’m sure plenty of ideas come straight into your mind from job description to culture fit.


If you are looking for a certain personality trait, make sure to include that in your job posting and your overall employee value proposition. If you are proactive about this, potential candidates should be able to ‘deselect’ themselves if they aren’t the right fit.


Additionally if there are certain time constraints or location requirements candidates should know, be clear and set that expectation.


This serves as an initial filter at the top of your funnel and is crucial to avoiding a mishire further on in the process!


4. Have a structured hiring process

Think about the process you want to lead your virtual worker through. It won’t and shouldn’t look like your typical hiring process.

First things first define what type of interviews you will have with your potential candidate. Many remote companies are explicit about a slightly longer, multi stage recruitment process to really understand what makes a candidate tick. After all, you’ll be working together in this exact setting.


Think about culture fit questions, skill questions and even a practical working trial. Whether the trial is paid or not is at the discretion of your hiring process, but companies like Buffer are already using these structures to get the best remote hires.


Automattic, a remote company, offers all its candidates a trial process that pays $25/hour as a “mutual tryout”. So that both the candidate and the company are sure about it being a good fit.

5. Be patient


As mentioned in the previous point, the remote hiring process can often take more time. Finding the right fit for a virtual team can be tough, especially without being able to understand a person’s nonverbal communication fully and general aurora.


In fact a recent post by wearebridge.io founder Eva touches on the psychological effects of video calling. For recruiters who are constantly using video calls to meet potential remote candidates and take them through the hiring process, it’s important to remember to be patient.


Remember that sometimes it’s ok to switch off the video and get to know a person by chatting. And those good candidates that really excite you from behind a screen, may be harder to come by.


Ultimately when you do find these great remote workers, you’ll be adding 10x more value to your team’s culture and productivity - so hang in there and let’s get recruiting for the new age!


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