Saturday, October 3, 2020

5 Tips to Help You Hire and Manage Remotely

Things have changed ~ companies have had to learn to alter the way they do business, work from home has increased, and doing many things “virtually” is suddenly the norm.
How you hire and manage employees needs to change too!
The days of face to face rounds of interviews and in-office onboarding, collaboration, and meetings are, for the most part, on hold. In fact, the entire hiring process may now be done virtually and your new hire may work entirely remotely. In fact, you may never have the opportunity to actually meet them “in person” at all before or even after they are hired !

All of this most likely seems strange, difficult, and daunting.

But that doesn’t mean hiring and managing remotely can’t be done and done right. Just because the way you did things in the past may not work in today’s world, there are still some constants that will keep you successful and on track.

And the most important constant is to never go in without a plan. 

Having a sound Hiring Process is now, and will always be, a key component in finding the best new employee for your business.

A good Hiring plan should consider these common areas: 
When it comes to Recruiting, it is all about reaching and attracting the right applicants ~ and this all starts with writing the perfect Job Description.

Social Media
Using your social media accounts to recruit and hire is a great way to reach a large amount of potential new hires in a minimal amount of time.

Employee Referrals
If you don’t have an Employee Referral program, start one now! Your best employees already know what it takes to be productive and successful within your company culture. So why not let them help you find their next co-worker?

Employment Background Check 
The Employment Background check should include verification of anything listed in the applicant’s resume along with a check of their online presence.

Discover more about how to develop a good hiring process and how to update it when needed in “Is it Time to Change Your Hiring Practices?”.

But no matter how hard you have worked to develop a hiring process that met your needs in the past, the pandemic has now thrown you a curve ball. Hiring and even working remotely is now part of the new norm. 
Are your existing hiring practices up to the task?

While it may be tempting to just start over and completely change the way you hire, this is not in your best interests. Instead, it makes sense to build upon your existing hiring plan and make some tweaks to meet today’s needs!

How to Successfully Hire and Manage Remote Workers “Tweet This”

And taking a look at these areas is a great way to start!

Candidate Communication ~ Communicating with your top candidates is more important than ever. Be ready to provide as much information as possible to your potential choices. Ask them how they prefer to be reached - email, text, phone, etc. Keep them apprised of where they are in the hiring process and what they can expect next. The key here is complete transparency and open communication. This will improve your entire candidate experience, ensure they are receiving the information they need, and give them a favorable impression of you and your company!

The Interview ~ How you interview can have a big impact your candidate’s experience. Start by setting up automated interview scheduling. This allows the candidate to select the time that best works for them out of the options that work for you. Whenever possible, choose video interviewing over interviewing by phone. Video allows you and the applicant the visuals needed to “read” each other. There is a lot that can be learned through eye contact, facial expressions, and even their confidence and demeanor. It is also a great way to start building that connection you need moving forward.

The Employment Background Check ~ Whether your employee works remotely or on location, it is vital to do an employment background check. Screening potential new hires is a great way to verify their honesty, know whether they have the skills and education to do the job, and that hiring them will not damage your company’s reputation ~ and none of this changes simply because your new hire may work remotely! 

Employment Background Checks are even more important for a Small Business!

“When it comes time to hire, many small businesses make the biggest mistake they can make ~ they skip the Background Check! Instead of approaching hiring with caution, they think that simply because they are a small business, screening their applicants before hiring them isn’t necessary. As a small business owner it is important to hire carefully, not in haste”. 

The consequences of making a bad hire on your business can have a lasting impact. It can harm you brand and even put your business, your other employees, and even your customers in jeopardy.

Learn more about the ramifications of making a bad hire here!

In order for the screening process to run smoothly, it is important to be completely transparent. Make sure the applicant knows exactly what you will be checking, what information they should be ready to provide, and that nothing will go forward until they are informed of their rights and sign a release allowing the background check. How you handle this stage of your hiring process can leave a lasting impression on your applicant. Make sure it is a good one!

The Need to Build a Relationship ~ In a virtual environment, everyone needs to work harder to connect. New hires need to establish a relationship to the company and your other employees. They also need to become familiar with their new job and get a real feel for your company culture. All of this was much easier before working from home became the new norm. That is why you need to develop a Remote Onboarding plan to fill the gap. 

Your Remote Onboarding plan must cover everything from HR tasks like filling out required forms, assigning company computers and phones, and even giving out initial work assignments ~ all of which can seem overwhelming to any new hire.

Managers need to take the lead and make the process as positive as possible. Set realistic goals for the completion of tasks and be sure to be available to answer any questions along the way. 

The Need to Communicate and Collaborate ~ New hires need to feel part of the team. Introductions to co-workers and learning the ins and outs of their new position within the company is vital to their success and satisfaction, and this was much easier when everyone worked on-site! 

Once again, it is up to the managers and trusted current employees to make this happen. Plan one-on-one or even small group virtual meetings to convey expectations, answer questions, and create a way for your new hire to simply get to know other members of the team. These interactions are key to helping your new hire build strong and more satisfactory work relationships.

Establishing a virtual mentoring or “buddy” program is also a great way to help your new hire get up to speed and feel part of your organization. 

The Need to “Socialize" ~ Being “social” was easy to do when everyone worked in the same place, but now it requires more creativity to accomplish. 

Establishing regular virtual lunches, group coffee breaks, and even small group “breakaways” are all ways to encourage your new hire to feel welcome and help them build the relationships with other employees they need. It will also help your existing employees feel the connections they used to enjoy in the workplace. All will help you build and develop strong team work and employee satisfaction.

The bottom line is this.....our world has changed. Face to face communication is no longer the norm and many companies have more remote workers than ever before. Learning how to adapt your Hiring and Management Practices to accommodate these changes is key. It will help you not only keep your company moving forward but will also help you hire and retain the quality employees you need to succeed!
Is Your Company Ready?

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Do you have questions about how to create the best Hiring Process for your company? Contact API Today! We can help!

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