4 Mistakes When Hiring Remote Employees — and How to Avoid Them

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You’d expect that recruiting remote employees wouldn’t be that much different than hiring on-site employees, however, as a result of the pandemic, the requirement and desire to expand remote and hybrid work arrangements has created a new hiring environment. It’s a problem that almost every company has to deal with.

In the Microsoft Work Trend Index, two-thirds of executives stated they’re rethinking their workspaces to allow more hybrid and remote work.

Employees’ and candidates’ desires for flexibility play a role in these decisions. According to FlexJobs data, about 60% of them prefer to work remotely all of the time, and about 35% want a hybrid work environment. As a result, most HR professionals and recruiters are already required to hire candidates remotely. When employing remote workers, HR professionals should avoid the following 4 mistakes:


You are not selling your business culture


The opportunity to work remotely, according to some HR and company leaders, is the ultimate selling factor to job prospects. However, more employers are allowing it than ever before. Working from home is no longer the fascinating, one-of-a-kind bonus it once was (before COVID-19).

When hiring remote staff, you still need to sell your organisation and its culture.

“The job seeker, too, has a huge decision to make,” says Carol Cochran, VP of People & Culture at FlexJobs. “Can you tell them anything about the company, the team, and your function that will assist them make a decision?”

Use all of the same selling techniques you’d use with applicants that come in for an interview and may end up working on-site. Consider the following example:

  • Allow visitors to take virtual tours of the site
  • Describe the candidates’ chances for professional and career advancement.
  • Emphasize your company’s culture and how it developed.
  • Share your company’s mission and how it affects your consumers and community.
  • Demonstrate how teams and colleagues form bonds and collaborate to achieve common goals.


Limiting the range of skills


Remote employees will require a unique set of talents, some of which you may not have thoroughly verified with on-site staff.

Sure, you want to make sure that the candidates’ talents, experience, and problem-solving abilities are appropriate for the position. And practically every employee needs some amount of soft skills. Fully and partially remote personnel, on the other hand, will require enhanced versions of those talents.

Because remote employees don’t have their boss dropping by to see how things are going, they must have the discipline and skills to stay focused and complete their tasks.

As a result, you’ll want to ramp up your efforts to assess remote applicants for communication style, motivation, and responsibility.

Inquire about the remote-specific talents you value, such as Zoom etiquette, project updates, and email response speed, among others.


Always recruiting in the same manner


New recruiting tactics may be required to find candidates for remote employment. People continue to scour the major job boards and websites, adding terms like “remote” or “hybrid” to their search. As a result, there are more employment openings than ever before.

That means that if you post a remote job, you’ll get more applications than ever before. However, this does not guarantee that the proper applicants will apply for our positions, making finding a qualified employee even more challenging.

Maintain your successful job postings. Then have a look at a job site that specialises in remote employment.


Losing past applicants


You don’t want candidates to disappear without a trace. So, by working with your Applicant Tracking System (ATR) vendor, HR directors should develop a system to keep in touch with candidates on a frequent basis – from the moment the application was received to the moment when the new recruit is being on-boarded as a new employee. 

“Applicants deserve responses regardless of where they are in your process,” says Cochran.

Every step of the way, be honest and upfront about the hiring process, articulating what’s the next step and what needs to be done.

Preparing to recruit? See how HealthBoxHR can help your business manage your open job vacancies and applicants with our Recruitment Management Tool

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