6 Pro Tips for Hiring Teams & New Recruits with Remote Interviews

Whether we like it or not, there is a huge disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic in the world of human resources. For the hiring managers, the pandemic opened a pandora box.

A series of lockdowns followed by a work from home (#WFH) mandate made it impossible to meet the candidates face-to-face and gather detailed information about their attitudes and behaviour.

While remote interviewing became possible using technology, bigger problems emerged. Hiring teams today face the challenge of the changing expectations from the candidates who demand a raise on existing compensation & ask questions on the company's Work from Home policies, flexible working hours, healthcare benefits. They seek a workplace culture that affiliates with their values and convenience.

Yes, these are the realities of the modern-day workplace! How to manage the whole new world of hiring remotely, from attracting top talent, managing mass applications to finding candidates worth interviewing, and aligning the candidate's expectations with the work culture?  

If you are struggling with these questions, this blog is for you! Here are the 5 pro tips for hiring teams to get the right talent for the job.

#1:  Modernise your interview process for evaluating remote workforce

With no more luxury of face-to-face meetings with the candidates, it is critical to establish the process of assessing applicants for the skills and competencies they need in a remote workplace.

After all, you are not just deciding if the candidate has the necessary skillsets, values, and cultural fit to become an employee in your company, but also, how efficient they work remotely with the least supervision. The very first among the pro tips for the hiring team is on modernization of approach and technology for remote hiring.

Asking the right questions to identify the standout candidates is essential during the filtration process. To set your baseline criteria, incorporate simple "yes" or "no" questions based on job requirements in your application format for quick filtration of right-fit applicants.

You can ask applicants to answer in 'Yes' or 'No' about a required skill, such as 'Medical Coding,' a certification, such as 'Certified Medical Coder (CMC),' or if they are available to work in odd shift timings, such as 4 am to 12 noon?

A mix of to-the-point and open-ended questions can identify the qualified candidates matching the job requirements. Ask open-ended questions, such as why this job interests them, and scenario-based questions, such as what they would do in a given situation with a client sitting in a different country and time zone. Even include a problem-solving question related to the job being applied for.

Also, keep in mind that a remote working environment requires the recruit to work independently, with little direction and perhaps no structure. So, ensure that the hiring team is prepared to ask smart questions that lead to a qualified, self-motivated candidate standing out.

Your recruit has to be truly interested in what your company does, its mission, and its accomplishments. Then only can we demonstrate the drive towards great working.

# 2:  Seeing is believing- schedule video interviews

On-site interviews are a thing of the past. The best way to stimulate them is to invite the shortlisted candidates for having remote interviews through video. Why? Unlike a phone interview, a video is a tip for hiring teams to select the candidates' non-verbal cues while answering questions.

While the team is aware of the skills these candidates bring to the table, the way they explain it, their body language, gestures, and eye contact can make them stand out of the mountains of applicants you will evaluate.

Video cover letters are the latest trend and an interesting format for the hiring teams to shortlist recruits. It shows the candidate's excitement about the opportunity to work for the company.

#3:  Create the right environment with the right tools for conducting remote interviews

This pro tip requires equal effort from hiring teams and the interviewed candidates. It reflects highly on the seriousness and effort of the interviewer. The candidate has put in when the remote interview takes place with no bandwidth issues and a quieter environment without the racket in the ambiance.

While hiring teams can use video platforms such as Skype, Zoom, or Go-to-meeting to host the interview, dedicated remote interviewing tools like Vid Cruiter, or My Interview offer additional functionalities for efficient recruiting like embedded evaluation forms and simple interview recording.

Virtual interviews are happening now from both desktop and mobile phones. Also, make sure that the tools you integrate well with mobile devices.

#4:  Convey remote interviewing 'etiquette.'

The experience of taking a remote interview should not be any less professional than taking the interview on office premises. Pro tips for hiring teams gives much attention to establishing etiquettes with a code of conduct in place for taking remote interviews, such as,

  • Dressing up professionally
  • Keeping desk clean of any clutter files & kid's toys
  • Checking the camera, microphone, battery in laptop and mobile
  • Keep the candidate's phone number and a landline handy as a backup. It helps if a connection failure forces you to switch to a phone call from a virtual interview.

It is harder to focus without face-to-face communication when holding a remote interview. So, video meetings do require more concentration. Every time we communicate, only a small percentage of what we communicate is verbal.

Almost 70-90 percent of what we convey is through non-verbal communication, where the meaning is instinctive. So, the interviewer needs to be engaged in the conversation. Sit in a well-lit place with non-distracting background, and get rid of all potential noise distractions by finding a quiet space.

We all know that working from home comes with its challenges: the kitchen noises, loud TV or music playing, family members running chores and asking for help, kids crying for attention, dogs barking in the street, traffic, or construction noises from outside the home.

While not all sounds can be controlled, noise cancellation software can work wonders. It increases work productivity and helps to listen effortlessly and be heard without the embarrassment of accompanying background noises.

We have experienced uninterrupted conversations with ClaerityAI, a noise-cancelling software that recognizes human speech by the speaker and eliminates other noises in the background, improving the quality of all of your outbound and inbound voice conferences.

Also, like any job interview, a remote interview is a two-way conversation. Give candidates enough time and opportunity to ask questions. And if they are shy or feel intimidated, make them comfortable and actively encourage them to speak up.

#5: Work on hiring team composition

Working remotely in teams is not easy - neither for the recruits nor for the manager and peers. Including the future hire's immediate manager and a colleague in the final stages of the interview process can be advantageous. It would help everyone get acquainted before committing to work together in remote jobs.

#6: Highlight the Work Culture and Perks

Expectations from both the hiring teams and recruits have changed in the "new normal." While higher salaries and great work culture are key ask while making a switch, the pandemic has made recruits look for flexibility to work from anywhere, inclusiveness, and fair compensation for remote employees.  

Highlight the training, paid leaves, healthcare benefits, diversity, and inclusion policies your company fosters as part of the work culture. Share the performance-based reward programs and virtual events the company hosts for its employees.

Paying employees working based on their willingness leads to income inequality throughout your company. That is a big problem for hiring teams, and HR must evolve a fair compensation policy to help recruit the best talent.  

In conclusion, hiring the right talent remotely while getting used to the new technologies can be a big challenge. With the right approach, tools, and planned mechanisms, tips for hiring teams can successfully build a remote team anywhere in the world.