Whether you’re new to remote working or have years of experience behind you, there is no doubt that the ‘new normal’ includes remote-based functionality. It’s your ability to adapt to this change and find ways of working smarter – not harder – that will help to set you up for success.
In a way, all office-based teams are already “working remotely”; that is, performing their duties behind a PC or laptop. The marked difference is the office-based interaction that comes with in-person working. Office-bound roles have more potential drawbacks than advantages, and as we see corporate giants like Twitter choosing to allow employees the option to work remotely on an indefinite basis, is this perhaps a trend that too few of us have snapped up until faced with a global pandemic?
There are endless benefits to remote working, and any virtual office occupant will vouch for this. Regardless of where you’re located – in another city or on another continent – remote work allows unprecedented opportunity to attract and retain top talent without the red tape of visas, sponsorships or dealing with the setback of long daily commutes.
Once you’ve embraced the basic principles of managing employees virtually, you’ll be in the best possible position to expand and build a team of competent, outcomes-based professionals. We’ve gathered some practical, useful tips to help you assemble the best virtual team to reach your business goals and objectives.
How to hire top talent virtually
Hiring virtually for remote-based positions will rely on excellent communication skills, and an ability to focus on key traits and experience. Traditional hiring can be a long, drawn-out process with high expectations for candidates to arrange travel, time off work from their current role, and a myriad of other unnecessary issues. Below are some aspects to consider when hiring virtually.
Look for soft skills
During the interview process, there are a few key characteristics to look for in potential candidates. These traits will help them achieve the best outcomes in their role and are a great indicator as to how adept they are at remote working. Seek out candidates who can demonstrate an ability to self-manage, and those who are naturally great communicators.
These soft skills can often not be taught, and by hiring someone who is particularly strong in this suit means you’ll likely spend less time managing them day-to-day. Further, candidates who show the ability to work independently in the absence of a social environment are best suited to work remotely on an indefinite basis. They naturally gravitate to managing themselves and their workload, and will also require less attention from you on their daily activities.
Seek top skills the role requires
When you remove the need to check eligibility to work, visa statuses and sponsorships, you open many doors for your brand. Actively seek out the top skills you need to fulfil your role, instead of seeking a balance between who is available locally and who you can afford to sponsor.
A new world of candidates is at your fingertips and working remotely allows you to recruit the finest professionals. It’s a good idea to narrow down your top required skills and seek those out, instead of hiring someone who might need extensive training to be effective in their role. The quicker a candidate can ‘hit the ground running’, the better for all involved.
Adapt your onboarding style
Remotely onboarding a new team member can be tricky. To establish personal connections quickly, it’s a good idea to arrange a video conference to introduce the new team member to existing staff and stakeholders, reminiscent of traditional face-to-face meetings.
Having an onboarding resource is invaluable. As your brand grows, new recruits will start receiving better, more structured training and onboarding as you become familiar with the process and refine it over time. Your onboarding resource should include:
- An overview of the company culture, processes, and each staff members role.
- One-to-one introductions with key team members and stakeholders in the company.
- An in-depth explanation of the company’s offering, tone of voice and brand guidelines.
- On-the-job training to help them acclimate to their role as best as possible
- Introduction and walk-throughs on all software, programmes, and tools they will be using in their new role.
We often see virtual hiring managers making use of Google Slides and PowerPoint presentations to create this resource, as it can be tailored for each recruit and contain valuable links and information that all new starters can benefit from. It also provides a point of reference if the new starter needs it.
Foster regular communication
Communication is the biggest quality to look after when working remotely. Avoid relying solely on text-based communications, like chats and emails. Rather pick up the phone, send a voice note or even better – revert to video. This will be especially useful in the first few weeks as your newest team member starts to adjust to the role and embed themselves. It also provides a great channel for honest communication, allowing you to pick up on any potential issues before they become a problem.
In conclusion, remote working can be fun and productive. It can transform the way you do business and definitely helps to keep your overheads low, as well as avoiding tying you to a physical office in an expensive part of the country, such as Central London or Edinburgh. However you decide to assemble your virtual team, we are here to help you with all you need to make your remote based brand a success. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help you flourish.