In need of a marketing expert to build your brand? Looking for a copywriter to create content for your website? Wish you had someone on your team who could build you a brand new website?
Regardless of what you need, there are remote workers all over the world who could get the task done for you. But is hiring a remote employee the right move for your business?
The answer to that question depends on a number of factors. Before you make your decision, however, you should consider all the benefits a remote staff can bring to your operation.
What’s the Benefit of Hiring Remote Workers?
Here are just a few of the ways hiring remote workers can help your business:
1. You Can Save Money
Many remote workers are freelancers and independent contractors. Unlike with full-time employees, you don’t need to give these workers benefits. That means no health insurance costs, no vacation days, no paid sick days, and no 401(k) contributions.
Even if you hire a remote worker for a full-time position, you can still save money. You won’t have to provide that worker with an office, so you save on overhead like rent, utilities, and office supplies.
2. Remote Workers Are Less Stressed
Eighty-two percent of remote workers report being less stressed than on-site employees, and less stress usually means more productivity. When workers are happier, they perform better. The more at ease your workforce is, the more likely you are to get quality product out of them.
3. Most Companies Are Already Hiring Remotely
According to IWG, 70 percent of people around the world work remotely at least once a week. People want flexibility, and working remotely allows for exactly that. The companies that don’t offer remote work are finding it harder and harder to attract and retain talent in this climate.
The Best Places to Look for Remote Workers
So, where exactly can you find remote employees? Here are some of my favorite digital sources of experienced, reliable, remote team members.
(Before I get started, I’d be remiss not to mention this very website, Recruiter.com. What makes Recruiter.com unique is that it brings together a massive network of recruiters to help organizations find the employees they’re looking for — including, of course, remote talent.)
With more than 2.5 million visitors each month, WeWorkRemotely is one of the largest remote work sites out there. In addition to a large pool of candidates, WeWorkRemotely also offers a variety of useful resources to help employers hire and lead remote teams and stay abreast of trends in remote work.
2. Remote OK
While Remote OK largely focuses on tech jobs, there are plenty of qualified non-tech workers on the site as well. More than 1 million workers use this site, giving employers access to a huge selection of candidates.
Jobspresso hosts thousands of resumes from designers, web developers, sales pros, content writers, project managers, and more — all looking for remote work opportunities.
Upwork is a platform on which you can hire freelancers to do short-term projects, one-off tasks, or full-time jobs. Companies can create job postings that freelancers can apply to, or they can browse freelancer profiles and invite only the candidates they like to apply.
For more expert recruiting insights, check out the latest issue of Recruiter.com Magazine:
Other Sites for Remote Workers
The job portals discussed above are some of the biggest and best sites for remote talent, but they aren’t the only ones. Here are a few additional options if you’d like to broaden your search:
- Working Nomads is a curated site for digital jobs in marketing, social media, development, management, system administration, design, and other categories.
- While Idealist is not dedicated exclusively to remote work, it is designed specifically for nonprofits and community organizations. Companies in these fields would be wise to leverage the site to find mission-minded remote employees.
- FlexJobs advertises remote, part-time, and freelance work opportunities in more than 100 industries.
- AngelList is a social network geared toward startups, and it attracts many talented professionals who are interested in remote work.
- Hubstaff Talent is a no-cost option for companies looking to hire remote workers for everything from entry-level positions to C-suite consulting.
- Virtual Vocations focuses on remote jobs in a vast array of fields, such as graphic design, consulting, software development, HR, and healthcare.
Tips for Hiring Remote Workers
So you’re ready to hire a remote worker — here are a few tips and tricks to help you find the perfect person for the job:
1. Know Where to Find the Best Candidates
Narrowing down your search pool is one of the best ways to find qualified candidates who are comfortable doing remote work and have a track record of doing it well.
You can post remote jobs on any job board, but the big job sites like Indeed, CareerBuilder, and SimplyHired aren’t geared toward remote work. Instead, you are better off focusing on job boards that cater specifically to remote workers, like the options outlined above.
2. Offer Candidates a Paid Trial Project
Before assigning a massive project to a brand new hire, start with something small. Assign candidates a task or two and pay them for these small deliverables. If they complete the tasks properly, you can confidently bring the candidate on as a remote worker for future projects.
3. Hire Remote Workers on a Probationary Period
Not everyone can handle working remotely. Before you hire someone for a long-term project or full-time gig, put them on a probationary period. During this period, you can assess the one quality all remote workers need to have: the ability to communicate.
Working remotely requires excellent communication to counter any potential disconnects that can arise between colleagues who are not in the same physical location. Make sure your new hire is easy to reach and able to communicate well via phone, email, chat, and whatever other channels you use. If you contact the worker and have to wait days for a response, they probably aren’t the right person for the job.
In addition, the probationary period is perfect for determining whether a person is a problem-solver. A successful remote worker should be able to work largely on their own and with less oversight than an in-office worker. If someone has to ask constant questions or wait for instructions every step of the way, they may not be a good fit for a remote role.
4. Review the Candidate’s Remote Work Qualifications and History
Everyone thinks that working from home is a dream — and for many, it is. But again, not everyone can handle it.
Do a detailed review of the candidate’s qualifications, paying particular attention to any remote work they’ve done in the past. The longer they’ve been doing remote work, the better they may be.
If the platform you use to source candidates shows ratings and reviews from previous employers, check them out. On Upwork, for instance, you will be able to see information about candidates’ previous projects. A history of long projects with high ratings shows that a candidate can excel with very little supervision.
Remote employment is quickly becoming the norm, and companies that don’t embrace it are likely to be left behind. If you’re ready to hire your next — or first! — remote team member, start with the websites listed above. With so much talent to choose from, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a remote worker who can take your business to the next level.
Brett Helling is the head of Ridester.