How to Recruit and Hire Remote Employees

man on laptop

In the age of coronavirus, the hiring process is much more fraught. With that said, you can still hire the right remote candidate using a strong screening strategy. For example, remote positions require more than one interview to ensure the candidate that you’re interviewing is the right fit. If you need help refining your hiring process to prepare for a remote hire, consider using our guide below.

Step 1: Pay attention to your interactions with the candidate in the beginning stages

When you’re in the process of setting up interviews with potential employees, keep a close eye on their interactions with you. Do they respond to your emails within 48 hours? Are they polite and flexible? 

If you get a good impression from your initial communications with the applicant, that’s a good sign. If they’re putting your emails on the backburner, however, that could be a sign the candidate isn’t ready to take the position seriously.

Step 2. Use a phone screen before a video interview

A phone screening is a great way to filter out candidates who aren’t on the same page as you. Use a phone screen to ascertain the applicant’s salary expectations, their understanding of the role, and their background experience. 

Here are some phone screen questions you may want to consider asking:

  • Why are you interested in this position? 
  • How would you describe your work style?
  • Can you tell me about your experience working remotely? 
  • What are your salary expectations for this role?

Step 3: Conduct a video interview 

A video interview is the next step to narrow down your applicants. A video interview should be used to assess the candidate’s skills and qualifications. It’s a good idea to ask situational questions that involve more than a yes or no answer because those types of inquiries better reveal their thought process. 

You should also be prepared to answer questions about the role and be able to comprehensively explain what the candidate should expect in their day-to-day schedule on the job. 

Pro Tip: Ask the candidate about their experience with remote work and ask what they like/don’t like about it.

Step 4: Ask the candidate to take a test

If you’re hiring for a position that requires a specific skillset, it’s crucial to actually assess the candidate’s skills. You wouldn’t want to hire a writer who’s never written an article before or an app developer that has never worked on app technology – so make sure the candidate is up to the task! Ideally, you’ll pay for the samples or tests that your candidates work on. If it’s not in the budget to pay candidates for their samples or assessments, consider just asking them to complete a very short test that doesn’t take longer than an hour. 

Step 5: Call references

It’s important to check an applicant’s references to get a better sense of who the candidate is when they’re part of a team. References can provide insight into an applicant’s character that gives you a better idea whether or not someone is a good fit for your company culture.

Step 6: Conduct a background screening

A background screening helps to verify a candidate’s claims about their certifications, licenses, past employment history, and identity details. It’s important to know where to get a background check because not all screening companies are the same. Make sure that the background check you use checks the following:

  • Employment history
  • Education history
  • Criminal records
  • Credit history
  • Motor vehicle history (if applicable)
  • License record check (if applicable)

Step 7: Provide supportive onboarding

After you hire someone, your job isn’t done! The onboarding process is a sensitive time for new hires who might feel overwhelmed by their new job. Plus, they’re also responsible for getting to know their coworkers from afar. That can be a lot! Make sure your new team member has all the resources necessary to succeed in their role. It’s also a good idea to have regular check-ins with him or her to see how things are going. Communication is key!

Conclusion: Identifying the right remote candidate 

Although the remote hiring process can add significantly more complexities to the mix, you can find the perfect employee regardless by employing a strong, methodical approach. With this guide in hand, you’ll find an ideal worker who will help increase employee morale and boost your bottom line.