The global pandemic has changed the way employees and companies view remote work. Companies have made efforts to solidify their remote recruitment process as remote working is no longer just an option.
In a study by Codesubmit, as much as 97% of employees prefer at least partially remote work in the future, while 74% of professionals expect remote work to become the new normal. In fact, 16% of US-based companies, such as Airbnb, Lyft, and Coinbase, have already pushed the envelope.
In Yelp’s review of their employee base, 86% preferred to work remotely, with 93% of the managers saying that the employees met their goals remotely. It’s telling that remote work has no significant implications for productivity and even boosts employee satisfaction.
Since recruitment has taken a whole new form and unconventional ways of working have been discovered to be effective, more companies have hedged their bets for remote work since the start of the pandemic.
However, companies without prior experience can find the transition difficult. While the process might look intimidating in the first place, it’s beneficial for companies in the long run.
In this article, we’ll dive into the benefits and challenges, strategies you can apply, and remote interview tips for remote recruitment.
But before we start, let’s first define what remote recruitment is.
What is Remote Recruitment?
Remote recruitment is the process of finding, screening, interviewing, and onboarding employees remotely with modern technology.
As opposed to local recruitment, where geographical and physical constraints are apparent, remote recruitment utilizes communication technology to bridge this gap. This type of recruitment bypasses time zones, cultural barriers, and country borders, effectively widening recruitment reach.
Remote recruiters have the same goals as normal recruiters but with a better understanding of technology and global cultures. Tapping into the globalized job market requires global fluency, flexibility, and great communication. But overall, the standard recruitment process stays the same.
Gallup’s data show that only 8% of companies relied on exclusively remote work pre-pandemic (2019) as opposed to 29% in February 2022. A steep increase of 21% in just three years. It will taper off to 22% beyond this year which is still a whopping 275% increase since before the pandemic.
Now let’s take a look at the benefits of remote recruitment.
Benefits of Remote Recruitment
For a company willing to transition to remote work but still unsure of its advantageousness and value, here are a few benefits to help start the move.
Reduced overhead costs
Remote recruitment entails fewer overall costs in the process of hiring employees. From sourcing to onboarding employees, office spaces and physical documents are replaced with their digital counterparts.
Online communication tools such as Google Meets, Zoom, or Microsoft Teams serve as virtual venues to conduct screening interviews. By utilizing technology to replace face-to-face interviews, office spaces are no longer needed, and overhead costs are significantly reduced.
On the other hand, important documents such as resumes, candidate information, and contracts can be shared securely through word processing services or contract management software such as Google Docs or PandaDoc. No need for physical copies to be printed, organized, and stored in physical filing cabinets.
In essence, the physical aspects of recruitment, especially interviews and documentation, are taken out of the equation, reducing the overall costs of remote recruitment.
Save up on time
From posting job advertisements, conducting interviews, and onboarding employees, remote recruitment drastically decreased the time spent on the hiring process.
With large job market platforms such as Indeed, LinkedIn, and Glassdoor available, promoting job openings gets easier for recruiters. Recruiters just need to plug in the required information for the job ad to publish it in the job market ecosystem.
Virtual interviews reduce or even eliminate the need for any commute. This advantage minimizes the risk of unexpected circumstances, such as accidents, traffic, and transportation issues, leading to late arrivals or cancellations that ultimately waste both parties’ time.
Add in the multiple interview sessions; this hiring stage can remarkably bottleneck the whole process. With remote recruitment, it’s as simple as setting up a video call and conducting the interview then and there.
Onboarding new employees, on the other hand, can also be as simple as a video call. Recruiters and managers can tour their newly hired employees to the company’s digital space while succinctly explaining their culture, process, and policies. This considerably saves time for all parties involved and nudges the new employees to start as soon as possible.
Affordable talents across the world
With the reach of remote recruitment extending globally, the selection pool tremendously increases. This means that the quality of skill and talent also increases. World-class employees and leading experts in different countries are available for recruitment pushing forward the company’s competitive advantage.
And with the larger talent pool, hiring similarly skilled individuals can cost less in different countries. For example, hiring talented developers from India is significantly cheaper than in the San Francisco Bay area.
Although the latter is exposed to better technology and more opportunities, the skill is similar. As communication tools are also readily available, highly skilled individuals collaborating across borders can bring the expected results at a lesser cost.
So, hiring remote employees in other countries can be at a discount with the same skillset.
Increase employee retention
Employees prefer remote work more and more. With 61% preferring to be fully remote, it’s clear that remote recruiting is crucial to keep employees happy. Remote recruiting eases the process not only for recruiters but also for employees as well.
Job seekers understand the hard work involved in creating (updating) resumes. This involves finding job opportunities, preparing for interviews, taking the interviews, and following the onboarding process for the company.
With remote recruiting, the friction of the hiring process reduces significantly. Especially when it comes to in-person requirements such as interviews and onboarding, the candidate’s experience matters a lot. The candidates begin their work with a good first impression of the company leading to more effective interactions and a willingness to be part of the whole.
The recruitment process itself signals the inclination of the company to provide proper remote working conditions for their employees. The process gives a glimpse of the company branding and direction toward supporting remote work.
Challenges of Remote Recruitment
Recruiting remote employees provides a different kind of challenge, unlike the standard local recruitment employers have been used to.
Since the availability of employees can be located in other parts of the world, issues such as highly increased talent pool, scheduling, evaluation, compliance, and onboarding pose a roadblock in remote recruitment.
Increased number of applicants
The available talent pool in the global job market is considered one of the better benefits remote recruitment offers. However, many applications also come flooding in with the larger pool of candidates.
In effect, prescreening candidates becomes a tedious and time-consuming activity. It becomes difficult for employers to identify the best candidates as quickly as possible. Ultimately bogging down the recruitment process.
One barrier to successfully recruiting remote employees in faraway countries is the different time zones. Scheduling interviews and tests are difficult, especially when there’s more than half a day difference between the recruiter and the candidate.
And even when they push through, the preliminary tests and interview conditions may not be optimal for the candidate. This may result in a poorer performance which does not accurately represent what the candidate can offer.
Recruiting full-time employees in other countries require different legal and tax obligations. Each country has specific labor laws that may not be present in the employer’s country, which can be overlooked without proper knowledge of the local compliance laws.
More often than not, countries demand international employers establish a local business entity to recruit legally within their borders. This goes beyond the remote recruiter’s responsibility and onto the employer, which may be time-consuming and expensive.
Employers can expect hefty fees and a hit to their reputation without proper compliance.
As much as onboarding employees remotely is a breeze compared to the standard in-office tradition, it may not be as effective as the latter. Virtual tours, company policy documents, and welcoming video conferences over digital technology are limited in their capacity to provide the whole essence of the company.
Socializing in person and interacting with the teams is still superior in giving the newly hired employee a proper welcome to the company. The personal presence of leadership and colleagues provide more impact and opportunity to explore the boundaries of the candidate’s role.
Although virtual and in-person onboarding has the same process, the lack of personal connection and gravitas of the former makes it challenging for employers to effectively onboard new employees.
Preparing an effective Remote Recruitment strategy
Knowing the benefits and challenges is only part of building remote recruitment for your company. Understanding the importance of creating an effective strategy will do wonders in your search for the best remote workers in the world.
Understand your company inside out
Before starting to employ remote recruitment in your organization, it’s important to be knowledgeable about your own company’s capabilities. Make sure you have the resources to support remote work and employees.
This can be done by reviewing your company’s tools, culture, and support for remote work. Delve into the communication avenues, productivity platforms, and file-sharing applications your teams are inclined to use. Once you properly assess your company’s structure for remote work, you can review your recruitment process from start to finish.
This end-to-end review can reveal inefficiencies within your process, which you can iron out. So when your campaign for remote recruitment starts, you’ll have well-optimized processes.
Create a strong plan
Now you thoroughly understand your company’s readiness for remote recruiting, it’s time to make a plan.
Firstly, you’ll need to set a proper direction. Talk to the stakeholders involved in the remote recruitment campaign. It may involve the HR manager, CEO, or COO. Whoever it is who needs another skilled employee in their team, talk to them.
Make sure to know what type of person they’re looking for. Identify the position and role they need to fill. And most importantly, what skillsets the candidate should have.
A clear understanding of what type of employee needs to be hired smoothens and speeds up the remote recruitment process.
Identify the budget
Next, you’ll have to consider the overall budget for your recruitment campaign to succeed. This involves outsourced recruitment services, job ad posting expenditures, background checks, and other expenses.
Be firm in your budget but be open to flexibility if the initial campaign isn’t successful. Although you can spend as many resources as you want to hire the best candidate, be mindful of overspending.
Calculate your budget and allocate it to the most critical aspects of the campaign. Don’t be too loose on your expenses but don’t be too thrifty either. Balance your budget to the quality of employees you can afford to hire.
Build your employer branding online
Once you’ve created your plan and set a budget, you’ll now have to focus on your employer branding.
If you’ve already built your online brand as an openly remote organization, then it won’t be as difficult to promote your job listing. Your previous efforts were well worth it, and potential candidates can easily trust your brand, leading you to more employee applications.
However, it’s best to start now if you don’t have proper employer branding or a minimal footprint. This campaign can go side by side with your remote recruitment campaign, but this can be quite costly short term but will pay off in the long run.
Your lack of online presence can make candidates hesitant to submit their applications. You may get candidates lacking the experience and knowledge required for your position. This makes it harder for you to recruit the best candidates successfully.
Without proper employer branding, employees may not find your company attractive or trustworthy enough to apply. But once you’ve built up your employer branding successfully, you’ll find recruiting easier as time goes by.
Add attractive employee benefits
One more crucial aspect of remote recruitment is providing attractive employee benefits to your candidates. More often, insurances and stipends hold a lot of weight for attracting and retaining employees. Providing employee financial safety nets appeals to most employees.
With this, you’re signaling to your prospective employees your care for their wellbeing. You’re able to help them with what matters most to them.
In addition to the above, other benefits such as gym subscriptions, education stipends, and allowances also help make your offer stand out.
Remember that prospective workers need to see that you value and care for your employees so they’ll be inclined to apply to your company.
Create a good job description
Now, one of the most important and often overlooked aspects of remote recruitment is a good job description.
Focus on writing concise, clear, and engaging job descriptions. This includes transparency of the position, a short description of the job’s roles and responsibilities, benefits, location, schedule, and, most importantly, salary.
Avoid flowery language or convoluted writing. Most job seekers apply for more than one company at a time. So it’s best to create a copy they’ll understand quickly and engage enough in applying as soon as they’ve finished reading. Of course, this will depend on employer’s branding. Your job description should reflect what you’re company is about.
Is it serious and professional? Is it playful and casual?
The key point here is to reflect your company’s image and write as clearly as possible to avoid confusion and misunderstanding.
Getting your remote interviews right on the money
Once the screening process is complete, a well-conducted interview can make or break your candidate selection. Here are a few things you can do.
Preparation is key
Before the start of the interview, it’s best to review the candidate’s resume, your questions, your recruiter’s notes, and your software. Make sure to take a step back, clear your mind, and focus on achieving what you need to know from your candidate.
Create a structure on how you want your interview to go. It doesn’t need to be formal but use it as a guideline so you won’t be sidetracked along the way. You can write it down in bullet points in your notebook or word document and make it a checklist.
Just keep your headspace clear and be composed to conduct your interview properly.
Take notes if you have to
As your interview process starts, you’ll get a glimpse of your candidate’s personality, traits, quirks, and knowledge. List down the things you find interesting.
What are the striking words, impressive processes, or effective solutions your candidate said?
Write them down. You don’t need to keep it orderly; it’s just for you.
You don’t have to do this. You can jot down mental notes, which you can write down later. But some interesting things may get lost during the interview.
At least by writing down notes of your candidate, you can form additional questions or observations which can help you form your initial impressions of them later.
Write your personal feedback
Once done with the interview you can form your judgment of your candidate. Review your notes or write them down. Identify the most striking impression you had of them and analyze whether they’re a good fit for your team.
If you have a scorecard, then you can fill it out and provide additional notes if you have any. What’s important in this step is to decompress the whole interview and marry the candidate’s character with their resume.
The future of remote work is bright with Multiplier
Although the world is slowly opening up and returning to normal, most people still prefer their work-from-home setups.
Although it may still be difficult for traditional companies to embrace a fully remote working culture, some have experienced the benefits and chosen to foster the path towards working remotely.
With Multiplier, you can tap into this future seamlessly.
We have entities in over 150+ countries for hiring, onboarding, and managing remote employees. You can pay up to 120+ available currencies directly on our platform. No need for time-consuming processes and difficult pivots to embrace remote work.
On top of it all, we have legal and accounting experts dealing with the changing compliances from country to country. Rest assured that we have the best people helping you on your way to realizing your remote workforce.