Hiring new people for a company can be difficult. Trying to find the right person to fit a role correctly after assessing the qualities and know-how of several candidates is no walk in the park. That’s where clever interview questions for remote workers can help your best potential candidates stand out for the rest, and make your job a little easier.
Generally, interviews would be done in-person, or at the very least over the phone for the first initial interview, after which recruitment would move to in-person interviews. However, as remote work-from-home is becoming much more common, it’s becoming more important to be able to know the right remote job interview questions as a recruiter for hiring remotely.
Setting yourself up for hiring remotely via an interview is going to be similar to the normal interviewing process. First, you process all the applications you received, checking resumes and checking answers to some preliminary questions.
Those that make it through the preliminary shortlisting can be emailed some follow-up questions, or you can set up a time for a phone interview. Finally, in the last phase of the process, you’ll arrange a video call to have a one-on-one session to evaluate the potential candidate. The following are some important questions you should ask when hiring remotely.
1. Have you worked remotely before?
Experience is important when it comes to hiring remotely for a job position. If the person has been working from home in a previous job, then they are going to be a step ahead of those that don’t have the experience. Working from home can be difficult on a person: being able to balance work with their home life, keeping on task, and staying motivated.
If they haven’t worked remotely before, you can ask them what challenges they envision with remotely working to give you an idea of whether or not they understand what they will have to overcome.
2. Have you worked with distributed teams in the past?
Remote working often requires working in teams still, so ask them if they have worked in a distributed team before and if they have experience with collaboration. Working well with peers and supervisors is going to be key for a good work-from-home candidate’s experience, so it’s important to keep in mind when hiring remotely.
3. Which remote communication tools are you familiar with?
Working from home inevitably means using remote communication tools to communicate with peers, supervisors, and clients. When hiring remotely, ask potential candidates which remote communication tools they have experience with, if any. You can also ask which in-office communication tools they have experience with because those skills are transferable.
4. How do you stay focused when working remotely?
Working from home often results in a lot of distractions; kids, roommates, pets, and random internet browsing all can cause someone to lose focus on their work. When hiring remotely, ask candidates what they do to stay focused when working from their home.
5. What is your home office set up like?
Hiring remotely means a candidate needs a place to work remotely from, ideally a home office, but at the very least, a dedicated location in their home where they can sit down and focus. You can also ask about the stability of their internet connection, what kind of equipment they have, etc. Consider as well whether you as a company would be willing to offer a home office budget as part of your benefits package to new employees.
6. How do you (plan to) maintain a work-life balance when working remotely?
Related to the previous two questions, ultimately, when hiring remotely, you need to ask them how they plan to maintain their work-life balance when they are working from inside their own home. Remote work often includes flexible work hours, but that means complications when trying to schedule between personal and work life.
Interview questions for remote workers are designed to assess candidates’ ability to balance their priorities to ensure they still deliver work on time, and this question does just that.
7. How do you keep yourself motivated, and what do you do when you slip off track?
Without direct supervision, some people find it hard to keep motivated or productive enough to maintain their work schedules properly. Discipline is needed when working from home, and self-management is an important trait for a potential candidate to have when hiring remotely. Ask how they will ensure their tasks get completed while working alone.
Hiring remotely can be a complex task, but with the help of Toggl Hire you can have the tools to help you screen, organize, and shortlist your candidates from anywhere in the world.