What to Keep in Mind When Hiring Teleworkers?

What to Keep in Mind When Hiring Teleworkers?

If you are running an online company or a company that require teleworkers, you’ll need to figure out the right formula to hire the best work-from-home or work-from-anywhere talent out there. This may not seem very easy at first since it doesn’t have all of the traditional hiring or scouting process, especially when it comes to the face-to-face interviews, but regardless there are steps to take to ensure you choose the best possible candidate for a telecommuting role. Once you have hired a teleworker, you can always improve performance, which you can read more about on the Jason Hanold Blog, but it will be vital to hire the right talent in the first place.

First of all, it is important to dedicate enough time to the process, which means avoiding leaning towards the first candidate you interview or simple skimming through the candidates. Kick off the process correctly by creating a detailed description of the role you need to fill, review all of the applications and finally ensure an interview that will fully allow to find out everything you need to know. It almost goes without saying, but be sure  to post the ads in a way that’s it’s clearly stated you are in need of a teleworker. These details in the job description are important to attracting the attention of just the right candidates. Just as important, you’ll need to spread the word on the right channels, and social media is definitely the best place to start. This will mean reaching other geographical locations besides your same city or even country. Additional to social media, you’ll need to use some job posting sites, which nowadays you’ll find many out there like FlexJobs, We Work Remotely or Remote.co.

Once you’ve posted effectively and started getting CVs, it’ll be important to determine some characteristics that remote workers will need to have to be effective. To start off, they will need to be independent workers, self-driven and proactive. They’ll also need to have excellent time-management skills, so as to meet deadlines. When working from home, having the ability to stay focused through all of the possible distractions will be essential to accomplishing deadlines and demonstrating high performance. Even though most may think that communication skills are not a must, due to the fact that you work in an isolated environment, this is not the case at all. Although teleworkers are all working from independent locations, their communication skills need to be more effective than ever because every message they send needs to be clear and effective enough for someone that they don’t have in the same location to understand and work with. They not only need excellent written communication but also verbal, mainly because although it is a virtual space there are ways with today’s technology to stay in touch and make an online office just as interactive through web conferencing and other tools like Asana.

Image courtesy of Mike McCune at Flickr.com

Of course, their grasp on technological tools will greatly influence their ability to be a teleworker. Be sure to include specific field-related technology or tools that are essential to your operation. Additionally, you’ll need someone who is resourceful because technology may fail us at times so understanding this, maintaining your cool and figuring out a solution will be extremely important to fulfill all of the tasks on time. Besides the skills, don’t forget to inquire about the set up they have at home or the place where they are going to be working from. Understanding the person’s surroundings, backup plan if internet fails, among other things will be essential to truly understanding if the person and their location is equipped to work as a teleworker.

During the interview with your potential candidate, it’ll be imperative to ask the right questions. Start off with their background in telecommuting and find out if they’ve ever worked in a flexible schedule or work conditions before. Have them share with you, their previous experience in telecommuting roles. The next question on the list should be about the environment where they are going to be working in, where usually the ones that have a home office or space where they can focus and concentrate will be more productive and successful. Moreover, you’ll also need to find out the candidate’s work ethic and routine. Their daily work routine will shed light on just how they may work for you in the case you hire them. This will include schedules since many teleworkers will need to adjust their schedules to the location of the company, whereas not so many will rely solely on asynchronous communication. The following questions could be about their resourcefulness to troubleshoot when technology fails. Since their work will highly rely on internet connection, you as the employer need to find out what alternatives they have in the occurrence their internet fails. Finally, find out their concerns and once you’ve gathered all of this information make an informed decision about your next addition to the company.

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