May 20, 2020

Remote Recruitment: The A to Z Guide for Remote Hiring Success

remote recrutiment

Remote recruitment is an HR buzzword that’s here to stay.

Whether your company chose to ‘go remote’ intentionally or in response to an emergency (thank you coronavirus), chances are you’ve experienced some form of remote recruitment by now.

And in the long term, that is a beautiful thing.

From widened access to global talent, to a boost in employee satisfaction (even “sometimes” remote workers are 25% more likely to be happy and productive)—there’s a reason remote work has taken off.  

But that doesn’t mean hiring from a distance is easy. As the incredible Justine Shu, Marketing & Community Manager at We Work Remotely, puts it: “We are seeing many remote-focused tools step up their game, and many companies are realizing the benefits of this digital transformation that has been evolving so quickly… [But] there’s a big difference between remote work by necessity and intentionally building a remote team indefinitely. Many companies are challenged with learning how to manage a distributed team.”

That’s where we come in. In this ultimate guide to remote recruitment, you’ll get a proven step-by-step framework to help you recruit the best global talent—all from the comfort of your laptop. 

Table of Contents

Why bother? The benefits of hiring remote employees

Companies hiring remote workers

How does remote hiring work? A step by step guide

Why bother? The benefits of hiring remote employees

There are a million and ten reasons why remote recruitment rules. 

From a widened talent pool to saving precious time, remote hiring has a lot of pros and not many cons. In fact, reports are already predicting remote recruitment is the trend to watch post-coronavirus.

Spark Lifecare is one of those companies hiring remote workers that has already witnessed the benefits. 

“[I don’t work] in the city where my company is primarily located, so in many ways virtual interviews make it easier to connect with candidates from all over. I can reach remote communities, including candidates within those communities, without the extra challenge of accessibility when it comes to even just booking an interview,” explains Spark Lifecare Director of Recruitment, Rachel Hammerton. 

So, what are the other benefits of remote recruitment?

  • Widen your talent pool (+ reach): A huge 99% of employees want to work remotely at least some of the time. Offer flexible working and you’re more likely to catch top talent. Plus, a location-diverse workforce will mean you’re open for business longer, have a richer company culture and are able to connect with more biz opportunities in different areas. 
  • Minimize cost: The math is simple: the more remote workers you employ, the less overheads. 🙌
  • Boost employee happiness and retention: Research shows 83% of employees say remote working increases happiness—and we all know happy employees = higher retention. 

remote staff
The Spark Lifecare team keeps it fun with their remote staff of care experts. 

Companies hiring remote workers: The Good, The Great and The Totally Awesome

Remote working isn’t a new concept. 
In fact, a huge 4.3 million people in the US alone work from home at least half the time, while 16% of companies exclusively hire remote workers. 

So, who are these remote working trail-blazers? Here are a few of the top players: 

  • Dollar Flight Club: “Our remote company is a testament to the tools we use. Remote candidates wouldn't get a fair shake unless we had a tool to do it. And for us, it's great because we find really good candidates all over.” —Kyle Maltz, Director of Sales and Partnerships at Dollar Flight Club.
  • MAhva: This Argentina-based software development company handles more than 100 remote applicants every week. With a hiring team of two, that's pretty impressive. 
  • Spark Lifecare: “Even though much of our recruitment process is virtual and it's over the computer, we make sure candidates throughout the entire process recognize we are a social enterprise that puts the person at the forefront.” —Rachel Hammerton, Director of Recruitment at Spark Lifecare.

growth of remote companies
Remote working has seen a massive boost since 2014. 

How does remote hiring work? A step by step guide 

Step #1: Post and promote

So, you’ve got an awesome remote role to fill and you’re super excited about bringing some top talent on board—now you need to shout about it from the rooftops (or at least from the best online job boards 😉).

  • Use done-for-you job description templates to get started: Writing a job description that sells can take time. Customizable job description templates (like the 350+ free templates available in Breezy) give you a starting point to create the most droolworthy (and time-saving) job ads.
  • Upload your role to the top job boards: There are tons of free job boards that will help show off your role—but who’s got time to spend hours uploading each one? With a top ATS you can upload your carefully penned job ads to ALL the top job boards with the click of a button. Now that’s smart.
  • Look for remote and diversity job boards: Our awesome Product Marketing Manager, Nina Cofer has some great advice when it comes to posting job ads in the right places: “Where you post your open jobs matters. Picking remote, niche and diversity job boards will increase your chances of finding candidates that are the best match for your position.”

Step #2: Screen applicants

Remote working has seen a massive boost in recent years and has worked its way to the top of the ‘employee wants’ list.

In fact, 76% of workers would be more willing to stay with their current employer if they had more job flexibility. 

But with the new-found love of remote, comes a tidal wave of applicants. If you’re finding yourself suddenly swamped by potential candidates, you’re not alone.

Lucky for you, that’s where the all-important remote applicant screening process comes in. 

With the right tools, separating the zeros from the remote working heroes is a simple task of asking the right questions at the right time: 

  • Use automated questionnaires: Before you even speak to your potential candidate, use questionnaires to find out whether they fit in with your basic needs. Do they have the tech know-how you need for the role? Are they available when you need them to be? Asking baseline questions early in the process will save you a ton of time later on.
  • Set up custom stage actions: In the smartest ATS’s, candidate questionnaire answers will automatically lead them to a different stage. These detailed stage actions will help move candidates along the pipeline with zero fuss.
  • Use video assessments: There are two reasons video assessments are crucial to an awesome remote recruitment process: 1) They help evaluate candidates’ camera presence—especially important for customer-facing roles. And 2) They help you get to know your candidates better from afar, before you even ‘meet’ them in the interview.
Breezy video assessments help you find candidates with ultimate screen-presence—exactly what you need for an A+ remote hire.

Ready for better hiring with video? Get free video assessments for up to 60 seconds using Breezy’s free plan!

Step #3: Schedule the interview with one simple link

According to HR pro Rachel Hammerton, great remote interviews are all about keeping it human—that means making it easy for you and the candidate. 

“Having a remote feel doesn't necessarily replace that in-person touch. We can make candidates recognize they're more than just a number, they're a person and they have valuable experiences,” says Rachel.

Here are some pointers to help you rock your remote interviews every time:

  • Get candidates to self-schedule: Connect your team’s calendars inside Breezy and send a simple scheduling link to let candidates choose the best time/date for them. Who knew it could be so easy?
  • Use automated text or email reminders: Show you’ve got your remote recruitment process down by being super clear with candidates. Automatically text or email a reminder to them before the interview to make sure everyone’s on the same page and turns up on time. 
  • Use template interview questions: Here at Breezy, we ❤️ super slick interviews. That’s why we provide a ton of template interview questions for free. Remember to make interview questions uniform for each role to save time and reduce bias.
  • Share interview guides with the team: Make life easy by attaching interview guides to your internal meeting requests so everyone knows exactly which questions to ask. Simple. 
  • Interview candidates from anywhere with live video meetings: Connect with your candidates face-to-face, even when you can't be at the same location. With 2-way live interviews, you can get to know your candidates, safely (social-distancing at its finest 😃). See the candidate's information and interview guide all on the same screen for the most effective interview yet.
Breezy's live video interviews give you the perfect way to interview while remote.

Step #4: Evaluate candidates

Candidate evaluation is a team effort.

The more eyes on the prize, the more of a bias-free and fair hiring process you have. 

From recording video interviews to making inter-team comms super slick, there are some really easy ways to ace this one. 

As Rachel puts it: “We record interviews and bring it back to the team to get other opinions on it—making sure that we’re hiring for the best possible person and that it's not just my own judgment thinking that, but it's everybody's judgment.”

Here are some awesome remote candidate evaluation pointers: 

  • Get points for team collaboration: We all know there’s no ‘I’ in team—that’s why using tech that supports team collaboration is where it’s at. With Breezy you can use messaging, emails and scorecards all in the same place, ensuring everyone gets a say in who you bring on board.
  • Prioritize team discussions: Choose the right tools to make sure your inter-team comms are super streamlined. With Breezy’s Slack integration keeping in touch about the latest remote recruitment round has never been easier. 
  • Make life easy with automatic reference and background checks: Every HR pro wants to make sure their potential new hire is as awesome as they seem. And that’s where references and background checks come in. If you’re already a Breezy user, you’ll know you can ask for references straight from Breezy. It’s as simple as one, two, click.

Catching up with your team about the latest hiring round has never been easier with Breezy’s awesome Slack integration.

Step #5: Follow up like you mean it

Every great HR pro knows how you end a hiring round is just as important as how you start it. 

That means tying up all the loose ends and leaving your candidates (even the unsuccessful ones) feeling like they had an awesome experience. 

Here’s why candidate experience is SO important: 

  • 50% of candidates say they’ve turned down a role after a crappy hiring experience.
  • Nearly 80% say the overall candidate experience they receive is an indicator of how a company values its people.
  • 63% of candidates are dissatisfied with employer communication after applying for a job. 

Need we say more?

Now, here’s how to follow up with remote candidates like a pro:

  • Catch up with unsuccessful candidates: Make sure candidates feel like their time was valued, even if they didn’t get the job, by sending them a quick email. With Breezy, you can automatically send friendly post-interview emails—and don’t forget to offer them the opportunity for brief feedback. 
  • Save your candidate pool: Unfortunately, there’s not always space to take on all the awesome candidates you interview. With Breezy’s Candidate Pools you can hang onto all the people who wowed you, in case a more suitable role comes up in the future. Here you can keep all the best candidates in one place and contact them easily whenever you need to.
Breezy’s Candidate Pools let you hang on to all your high-potential candidates for whenever you’re next hiring for the perfect role.