In more ways than one, today’s is the age of the remote employee. By this, we aren’t just referring to those based halfway around the world who may have little choice but to fulfil their duties for you remotely, but also your regular employees who may spend time in your office alongside periods working from home.
It has never been more important, then, to use your recruitment database software in search of those who can actually work effectively remotely. Here are three of the traits to look out for.
1. Digital proficiency
It’s difficult for remote workers to be truly effective unless they have a consistent and reliable line of communication with you, as is typically provided these days by the likes of email and Skype.
You don’t want your remote employee to be a technophobe, or someone who is easily hampered by digital glitches, so you should be sure to test their grasp of modern communication technology as part of the interview process.
2. An ability to manage time
Employing someone who is self-motivated and resourceful with their time is so crucial when they will be working far away from your watchful eyes. How much do they typically get done on the average working day? Are they able to make decisions themselves when they hit a problem, so as not to slow down a long-term project’s progress if you are not available to advise them?
Ask open-ended questions about a candidate’s approach to assignments and how they react to difficulties that may arise from time to time, to work out just how well they use their working hours.
3. Experience of home working
A lot of people certainly like the idea of working from home – with the constant availability of the fridge and the ability to work on their laptops in bed – but the reality may be much different to what they expected. Many a new remote worker in the past has despised the isolation of home working and the way it blurs their work and non-work lives.
Remote working isn’t the right option for everyone, so it pays to take on someone has really has ‘been there and done it’ in this area – someone who has done it for years and years and has the track record of achievement and productivity to show that it works well for them.
While the recruitment of remote workers has many advantages – not least giving you access to skills and experience that might have been beyond the reach of your company otherwise, to say nothing of often lower costs as well – you really do need to ensure you take on the right such workers if you are to gain maximum value from them.