How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Remote Hiring

In a post-pandemic world, remote work and hiring have become more common. How can we avoid the most common pitfalls of the remote hiring process?

Ahh, the joys, trials, and tribulations of remote hiring.

There are the lovely parts — more candidates, more freedom, more choice — but then there are the more frightful aspects. Here, we closely examine some classic remote hiring stumbling blocks and how to sidestep any spooky surprises.

Technological Betrayal

Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Workspace, Slack, Webex — when we work remotely, we depend on newfangled video communications software to function, well, correctly. But as we have all experienced, these technologies are not infallible — sometimes with hilarious (and ruinous) implications. Sometimes Zoom will shut down in the middle of a critical executive interview or, for some reason, turn you into a cat.

For ease of communication, interview, onboarding, or otherwise, invest in the best available video chat option for your team. Yes, these technologies can be costly, but having a professional account/license gives you more functionality guarantees. Should your tech fail, you have more robust customer support, who can bring you back from the tech dysfunction abyss.

Ch-ch-ch-choices. A Curse in Disguise?

As remote work becomes more sought after, the influx of candidates can sometimes feel overwhelming. On the upside, remote work is a fantastic opportunity to attract top-tier talent, especially in an employee-favored market. But on the flip, sifting through giant pools of potential candidates can be a frightening burden for hiring managers and HR teams, recalling the classic search for a needle in a haystack.

What if there were a way to insert more needles into said haystack? Or craft a stack of all needles? If you want to hold the hay, consider working with a staffing agency (like Creative Circle) that vets candidates for you, only presenting you with folks with the skills, experience, and know-how to get the job done.

Tick Tock, Tick Tock . . .

With the need for derrieres in chairs obviated by our growing societal shift into remote work, the talent pool has grown considerably, which is excellent. Still, some snafus come from a less local approach, one of which is time zones.

Let’s set the scene. You’ve found some contenders for your role — now it’s time to schedule the video interviews. Your hiring manager is in New York, the candidate lives in San Francisco, and your project manager is in Minneapolis — the schedule just got a bit more complicated. Time zone variances can inject some trickiness into the hiring process, which can also impact how you work together if the candidate is hired.

Using a scheduling program can help. This software lets users input time zone information and automatically rectifies the meeting times when sending invites. If a particular team has several remote workers in several different time zones, this can save time and energy and help avoid communication mishaps.

While dealing with time differences of one to three hours is easily surmountable, when the time difference creeps north of three hours, it may become essential to ensure that the candidate is aware of the time zone in which your company operates.

Onboarding Woes

You have successfully navigated some of the blood-curdling pitfalls of hiring remote workers. Now, it is time to welcome them to the team and kick off onboarding. When done in person, several hires can be steered through the process by a member of the HR team. And voila, after three or four hours, ten new employees have been onboarded.

But when onboarding remotely, it is up to the new hire to dedicate the time to the required onboarding tasks. Should any glitches arise, there is no person to turn to for immediate assistance. What would have been a three-hour process may have just become a six-hour affair. We all know that time is money, so how can we expedite remote onboarding?

Many companies have taken to holding group onboarding sessions via Zoom. All recently hired candidates are required to attend, and HR guides everyone together through the process in real time. If hiccups arise, help is more readily available to nip challenges in the bud, saving time, patience, and frustration.


Bottom Line

Remote hiring can sometimes feel like a minefield. One wrong step and ka-boom — the spinning wheel of death! The file won’t load! Are you a cat?! But the good news is that by planning accordingly and solving problems before they arise, you can make the brave new world of remote hiring work for you.

About the author

An award-winning creator and digital health, wellness, and lifestyle content strategist —Karina writes, produces, and edits compelling content across multiple platforms —including articles, video, interactive tools, and documentary film. Her work has been featured on MSN Lifestyle, Apartment Therapy, Goop, Psycom, Yahoo News, Pregnancy & Newborn, Eat This Not That, thirdAGE, and Remedy Health Media digital properties and has spanned insight pieces on psychedelic toad medicine to forecasting the future of work to why sustainability needs to become more sustainable.