Online interviews became necessary and more popular this 2020. Technology has been the best ally: there is a wide variety of online platforms and apps to hold professional virtual interviews. Today’s modern rules and considerations have guided business owners and human resources departments during remote hiring processes.
To determine what is the best hiring strategy for a company—besides the candidate meeting the mandatory requirements— here’s what you should consider before hiring remote team members through online interviews:
Preparation before the online interview
Make sure you choose the best platform and that you feel comfortable with it. Take your time to test audio, video, and the different features the application provides.
It is important to create an itinerary so that both, candidates and interviewers, understand the conference flow and know in advance what to expect from this encounter. It is also courteous to let participants know if they should activate their video cameras or if they should download software to join the meeting.
Even though it is now natural to make sure that everything works well 10 to 15 minutes before the meeting, postdoctoral researcher Abdelrahman Y. Fouda recently suggested in a Nature column that everyone should include a few extra minutes in case of troubleshooting. It is common to have connectivity issues or technical glitches during online interviews.
During the online interview
Once you’ve confirmed that everything is working properly and you had that initial small talk, it’s time to ask the right questions. Besides the relevant questions you must ask candidates regarding their skills and abilities for the job, this is also an important opportunity to test their communication skills.
If the person you want to hire will be working remotely —temporarily or permanently— this online interview can provide valuable information regarding how both of you could work as a team to solve problems and develop assignments. Make sure you ask questions that involve critical thinking and that test the applicant’s listening skills.
Additionally, seasoned business advocates like Alex Haimann suggest to include writing tasks during the interview instead of collecting writing samples before or after the meeting. This way, you can see how the candidate responds without extensive editing and under pressure. This is especially useful if the job position requires constant written communication, internal or external.
Hiring remote team members
Companies that are going through a remote hiring process for the first time should also bear in mind the qualities of a good freelancer. Perhaps your candidate has the knowledge and the work experience you demand, but they have never worked from home.
Before you hire a new team member for your remote project or job position, make sure you consider specifically what attributes you think are important to build a strong and long-term professional relationship. Some experts recommend acknowledging this person’s self-motivation, outside interests, and abilities to prioritize and face difficulties.
A remote worker won’t have direct supervision and must be able to complete the tasks and move forward without constant reminders. Trust and an efficient control and measurement system are crucial to achieve goals and maintain a good remote working harmony.