How to recruit remotely: 8 tips for finding your dream candidate online

Employers

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Thanks to the endless supply of technology that allows us to work from home, recruiting remotely is now a good option for companies who can’t meet candidates in person, but want to move forward with the hiring process. With the right tools and systems in place, you can recruit remotely whilst still ensuring you select top-quality candidates that are a perfect fit for your work environment. While many companies have frozen the hiring process for the time being in light of the global pandemic, if you are looking to fill a vacancy in the near future, then hiring remotely is a great option. 

If you are still hiring, this article covers our top tips on how to hire remotely in a way that works for both the employer and the candidate. 

Invest in good quality equipment for video calls

Candidates can get nervous and agitated if there are technical problems. Make sure everything runs smoothly by investing in a reputable platform or software for your video calls, and test any new platforms out before using them with candidates. Options for video call software include Skype for Business, Zoom and Google Hangout. It’s important to remember that you should train your own employees on how to use your chosen software first! 

Pay extra attention to body language

Video can’t replace in-person conversations for multiple reasons. You miss out on the small talk that comes with face-to-face interaction, like greeting the candidate at the door, offering them a drink and discussing the weather. To counteract this, pay extra attention to the body language of the candidate as the view is narrower - literally - than during an in-person meeting.

Remember that not everyone is used to video calls

If you hold regular video interviews as part of your job, it’s worth remembering that for many candidates, using video software is a new experience that they might feel uncomfortable with. To give the candidate it’s a good idea to include at least 2 video interviews with candidates so you can get a good impression. Spend a little extra time making the candidate feel comfortable at the start of the call. At the end of the day, it’s a conversation between two (or more) people. Ask the candidate a couple of relaxed questions at the start to break the ice. Which book they are currently reading or if they have any favourite new Netflix discoveries are great options.

Paint a picture of the company culture

The candidate won’t be able to visit the office and experience the company culture first-hand (yet). So to make up for this, describe the company culture and office atmosphere so the candidate can get a good impression of whether or not they would be a good fit. You could share internal videos, and let the candidate know what to expect in terms of internal events that the company hosts. Do they have unique, themed Friday drinks once a month? Let the candidate know! These small details can all help to paint a picture for the candidate so they can get a good sense of their potential new employer. 

Ensure the candidate can work without supervision

For companies who are currently hiring, it’s possible that your new employee will have to work remotely at one point. This means that you should ensure they have the necessary skills to be able to complete their work without supervision. Consider setting the candidate a task or project to work through at home that would be representative of what they would do in their job. 

Get your digital documents ready

If you find the dream candidate and want to move quickly to seal the deal, make sure you have digital documents ready to go. What would the process be? Are the contracts already in online format? Research and invest in tools that facilitate this, such as DocuSign.

Prepare for the new hire

Preparation is key. Make sure that the person you hire will have the necessary company equipment that they would need to start working right away, such as a company phone or laptop. Ensure that you are able to provide online training for new starters, and transfer your entire onboarding experience into a virtual environment to take into account current situations.

Respect standard hours

Just because everyone is currently working from home doesn’t mean working hours have changed. When you’re communicating with candidates via phone, stick to regular work hours. Call between 9 and 6, and don’t take advantage of them being stuck at home! 

Recruiting remotely might feel unnatural at first, especially if it is not something you have experimented with before. But with the right tools and with some tweaks to your usual processes, remote recruiting is a solid alternative to face-to-face interviews when circumstance makes this impossible. Mutual trust is key. Candidates need to trust that they’ll get the support they need from afar, and companies need to trust their new employees with their tasks.

If you still feel uncertain about taking the hiring process online, there are a few additional measures you can put in place. You might decide to spend more time on the vetting process, perhaps investigating the candidate’s social media presence more than you otherwise would. Communication with the candidate will be more important than ever. Video meetings are easy to set up because the candidate does not have to travel, so don’t hesitate to set up multiple video calls so that the candidate can meet a variety of people from within the company. If you are looking for more tips on hiring candidates get in touch with us.

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