No doubt about it: the success of a company ultimately comes down to its workforce. After all, when you have a united, happy, productive team whose members feel valued and respected and whose talents are utilized, the company has the potential to reach new heights each and every day. But when your company is a remote one, you have to ensure success from the get-go, which is often during the recruiting process. Here, some top remote companies offer four recruiting tips for success.
Take your time.
Sure, you might be in a rush to fill that marketing position since your previous employee left unexpectedly, but it’s imperative to take your time, particularly if you’re hiring a remote worker. Just ask Cruce Saunders, founder of Simple [A].
“The process to become a full-time [A]gent has multiple stages and takes a long time. Our process weeds out people who are looking to quickly switch jobs, or who are not looking to get to know the company little-by-little,” says Saunders. “We believe no matter how good the interviews and tests are, you really don’t know somebody until you work with them.” So even if the job candidate seems perfect for the position, take your time during the hiring process to meet with as many qualified candidates as possible to get a feel for who would make a good fit in the long term—and who might not.”
Look for someone with experience.
It goes without saying that you should absolutely hire a person who has the necessary skills, education, and previous work experience to match the duties of the remote job. When it comes to hiring for a remote job, though, you should ideally add another factor to the recruiting process—looking for someone who already has previous remote work experience. “A heavy emphasis is placed on whether working remotely will be a good fit for a candidate,” say Meridith Burrows, HR manager and Eric McWhinnie, senior editor of The Cheat Sheet. “People tend to either love or hate working remotely and it is important that we make sure each candidate understands the benefits and challenges of our remote work environment before joining the company.” So look for candidates who have not only already worked remotely—but have done so successfully and liked it, too.
Hire someone who wants to work for you.
Being able to stay home to care for young children. Being able to take an aging parent to doctor’s appointments. Having a flexible schedule in order to continue education. Looking for work-life balance. There are a myriad of motives why someone would want to work remotely. Personal reasons aside, one of the top factors a manager should be looking for during the recruiting process is a job seeker who wants to work for your company—and your company alone. “Most of our team has approached us directly to ask if we’ve been hiring. That’s one of the advantages of being a relatively well-known remote team,” says Jon Lay, founder of Hanno. After all, you don’t want a worker who barely knows what your company does, but is only interested in the remote work aspect of the position. As you recruit, seek out the job candidates who know about your company, its policies and practices, and its mission as well—those are the job seekers who can go on to become excellent remote workers in your organization.
Know what type of worker you want.
Yes, you want a remote worker who can do the job, but if you think a person’s character and personality don’t matter, think again. Ironic as it may seem, working in a remote environment means you’ll actually learn more about your employees than you might imagine. That’s why you need to look for workers with specific traits. “We look for the same thing in all of our hires, but it is especially important for remote workers to be self-motivating, proactive and strong communicators,” says David Fullerton, VP of engineering at Stack Overflow. Kathryn Ottinger, director of marketing at Intridea/Mobomo, takes that sentiment one step further: “Often times, we seek out entrepreneurs. Self-motivation is crucial for remote teams – we aren’t there to micro-manage you – so that’s a huge factor in the hiring process.” Look for workers whose character and personality meet not only the company’s needs, but who also have what it takes to work remotely and succeed.
Hiring for a remote job is different from hiring for a traditional in-office position. Keep these four recruiting tips from top remote companies in mind the next time you have to fill a position, and you’ll hire the right remote job seeker every time!