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The new normal: interview and hire your best fit remotely

Published: Friday 26th June 2020

When you hire remotely, finding the right match might feel like you’re trying to find a needle in a haystack. With such a large pool of candidates, it can be daunting to discern who you should interview and how to determine whether they’re really the right fit for your role. Using a combination of technology and hiring strategies, you can efficiently build a remote team that carries you through the new normal and into the future of working from home. Although you may not physically be together in an office, hiring managers, bosses and their employees can still come together. Using the right tools will ensure that you connect with the most qualified people for your open positions. So, here’s how to interview and hire your best fit remotely.

Fine-tune your job description to hire your best fit

Confident businessman talking in video conference with recruiters. Online job interview concept to hire your best fit remotely.

A good job description does more than spell out requirements and responsibilities. When you post a job online, you need to showcase your company’s personality and culture. Immediately, this will change the way people respond and help draw in the exact type of individual you need to fill your remote job. Job description templates are useful as they give you a good springboard to express your own business’s unique qualities. Make sure that your description does more than simply list what people should be able to do; you want to attract people who possess the right characteristics.

Make the hiring process interactive

Video applications are becoming more popular as remote hiring becomes commonplace. Rather than sifting through hundreds of CVs, a video is far more personal and immediately helps you gauge whether a person would be a good fit for your team. You don’t have to put candidates entirely on the spot, either; post a list of screening interview questions that they can answer to help break the ice and demonstrate their interest in the position. You may also incorporate small tests or questionnaires into the application process; adding a bit of work to the experience helps deter candidates who aren’t genuinely interested in the role.

Ask The Right Questions Concept, job interview and recruitment

A word of caution: Although you want to screen people as efficiently as possible, be mindful of candidates’ time. If it takes someone over 30 minutes to simply apply to your job, the volume of applicants will drastically decline.

Filter CVs and hire your best fit

Set up a separate email address for people to submit their CVs in order to find and hire your best fit. You should also automate a response that thanks each applicant for their time and lets them know when to expect a response. Avoid being overly generic and dismissive, which can be condescending and negatively impact someone who is going through the struggle of trying to find work during this difficult time. A thoughtful automated email response might look like this:

business woman office workers holding are arranging documents of unfinished documents on office desk, filtering documents

Thank you for applying to join the [Company Name] team as a [Position Title]! We appreciate your interest in working with us. We are currently accepting applications until [Deadline] and will be reviewing them immediately thereafter. Every application matters to us, but for the sake of efficiency, we can only respond to CVs that meet our current needs.

If you do not hear back from us within [insert timeframe, e.g. two weeks], that means we have moved onto the next stage of interviews, but we encourage you to apply to our future job listings.

We wish you well on your job search and thank you again for your time and interest!

To filter CVs by position, you can set up keywords and folders for each job title that will automatically file applications into the respective location. There is also a variety of candidate filtering software that can narrow your pool to the best matches.

Use video conferencing to your advantage

Use specific job interview questions for each role in order to find and hire your best fit. Questions should assess each candidate’s knowledge, skills and personality. A combination of behavioral and situational questions will help you get a full picture of each candidate’s applied knowledge and unique approach to their work.

Man having business meeting via videocall, video conferencing concept

Through video interviews, you can speak with each applicant face-to-face to gauge their communication skills and temperament. It’s best to start off with a short introduction of the company, who you are and a general overview of the position a candidate is applying for. Then, after your questions, make sure you give the candidate a chance to speak and inquire about any additional information.

Remember that although the interview process can be faster online, you must still consider everyone’s application individually. To avoid fatigue and keep your engagement high, schedule a 10- to 15-minute break between each interview.

Planning ahead

Internal preparation is your best strategy when it comes to finding the best remote candidates online. Take some time to work with your hiring division about the New Normal and the effects of working remotely on your company. As your business establishes a new structure and flow, be mindful of the time it may take to hire remotely and understand that your new rhythm will fall into place with time and practice. 

Author Bio: Brandyn Morelli is the co-founder of HelloCecil, a SaaS platform helping small businesses make smarter hires through video interviewing.

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