How to Hire Your Remote Team (Step-by-Step!) + 8 Benefits of Remote Teams

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Girl working from home

We’re kicking off our series on Remote Teams with two important topics – Why remote teams are so beneficial & how to hire your own epic, productive remote team. Before we get started, let’s take a minute to reflect…

2020 was a year like never before.

With the rise of COVID, TikTok, and wearing sweatpants to work, you are left guessing which is going to stick around for good. 

If we learned anything from 2020, it’s that: 

📧 The majority of meetings should just be emails. 

👖 Real pants are no longer a necessity. 

🛋 Most jobs can be done from the comfort of your couch. 

*cue remote workers celebrating everywhere*

working with puppy gif

According to Garter, 88% of organizations worldwide required or encouraged their employees to work from home after COVID-19 was declared a pandemic. 

And 74% of companies plan to shift at least part of their workforce to remote work permanently.   

While some companies, like Twitter, have announced that their work from home option is actually never-ending, the majority of companies are still warming up to the remote team trend. 

But hey, can we give a quick shoutout to human adaptation real quick? 

Even now, we see the booming appearance of hybrid teams, with partly in-person employees and partially remote, or the option for all employees to work from home for at least a few days a week. 

In fact, Owl Labs surveyed that 52% of employees report working remotely at least once a week, and 68% do so at least once a month. 

It’s so crazy we invented planes, trains, and cars… just to end up staying at home 8 hours a day

While working from home may seem oh-so-glamorous compared to the 9-5 office life (and there are some crazy cool benefits), it doesn’t come without its challenges, like any modern-day-life-situation. 

That’s why this guide to managing and hiring your remote team will keep you fresh and up to date on your journey to finding the perfect balance for everyone involved. 

Top 8 Benefits of Having a Remote Team

I mean, this list could go on and on and on… but I’ve narrowed it down to the top 8.

📍Benefit 1: Location Independence 

Do you ever just want to quit your job and travel the world?

If you are ever worried about your team quitting on you to travel the world – well, the perks of a remote team are that now they don’t have to leave. 

44% of remote workers (that’s almost half!) travel and work simultaneously for one week to one month a year. 

Whether you are backpacking around Asia or just visiting the parents for a few weeks, location independence is something that a traditional office job can never compete with. 

Plus, you can live wherever you want, so you can stay close to your hometown, or finally move in with your friends in Bali. #truestory.

Traveling the world picture

👥 Benefit 2: Larger Hiring Pool 

Going hand in hand with location independence is having a massive pool of applicants to hire from. 

And Forbes agrees – remote work helps broaden the talent pool and level the playing field. 

Remote work gives people who typically have trouble finding in-person office jobs, such as disabled or chronically ill, more options to have a fulfilling career while still keeping their health a #1 priority. 

Another plus is that you are no longer limited to the talent next door. You can branch your search out to all four corners of the states or even all seven continents of the world. 

The talent you can find in the global workforce is unmatched, giving you the best of the best for your remote team.

📈 Benefit 3: Increased Productivity 

Has anyone ever noticed how unmotivating it is working in a room full of people who need coffee breaks every hour? 

77% of remote employees have! They report that they are more productive working from home than in an office setting. 

☕️ Maybe it’s because the coffee isn’t free anymore. 

Or maybe it’s because we are no longer valuing people by the hours spent sitting in an office, but rather their deliverables and productivity in getting things done.

Only time will tell.  

👀 Benefit 4: Fewer Distractions

Tagging along to increased productivity is its bestie pal – fewer distractions.

With almost matching statistics, 75% of remote workers reported that they work from home because they experience fewer distractions. 

As in, they don’t want to be distracted while working.

Crazy story, huh? 

*opens a new tab to google funny cat videos* 

Cat on a computer

🧘‍♀️ Benefit 5: Less Stress

You heard it here second, only because Amerisleep said it first – 80% of remote workers experience less work-related stress than traditional office employees. 

And it’s probably because you can work in bed while watching Netflix. Not saying I do that, but not saying I don’t. 

💰 Benefit 6: Saves $Money$

Businesses save money by employing remote workers – an average of $11,000 per remote half-time worker

It’s the modern way businesses can cut corners while actually increasing employee happiness. Just ditch the office space!

Forget the traditional office expenses like: 

  • 🏣 Rent and Utilities 
  • 🖥 Desktop Computers 
  • 👾 High-speed Internet 
  • 🧹 Cleaning Services 
  • ☕️ The Famous Coffee-Machine-Slash-Snack-Bar ™ 
  • 🖨 Printers and Ink 
  • 📑 Pens and Paper 
  • 🛫 Travel 

Instead, remote companies are shifting their budgets and prioritizing incredible benefits like: 

  • 🏋️‍♀️ Gym Memberships 
  • 🧖‍♀️ Self-care Stipend 
  • 📚 Education Stipend 
  • 💻 Technology and Office Supplies Budget 
  • ❤️‍🩹 Healthcare Stipend 
  • 🏖 In-person Retreats
(Make sure to include this section when pitching your new remote-team management plan to your boss!)

🛀 Benefit 7: Flexibility 

Working from the bath tub gif

Freedom, money, and, what’s that last thing bloggers always rage about? 

Oh ya, flexibility! 

And not the yoga kind 🧘‍♀️. 

It turns out that scheduling flexibility is the top reason to work remotely for 53% of U.S. remote workers. 

🏝 Benefit 8: Unlimited Vacation

This benefit is very company-dependent, but surprisingly, 32% of remote workers get unlimited vacation days. 

And the even more surprising part – they only end up using about 2-3 weeks of them! 

👋 So, say goodbye to the typical two weeks off a year.

I can see the headline now: remote workers are very satisfied with working remotely. 

And Buffer confirms my ramblings, showing an outstanding 99% of remote employees would like to continue working remotely to some extent in the future.

Whether your team is fully remote, or partially remote, it goes to show that remote work has massive payoffs for your company in the form of overall happier employees. And happier employees = more productive employees, which in turn, creates a more profitable business.

That’s why these benefits are so important- when your employees thrive, your business thrives. 

And who doesn’t want to thrive? 

Challenges of Remote Teams

And while there are so many benefits to remote work, there are also two significant challenges that you can’t ignore:

  1. 🙁 Loneliness 
  2. 🔌 Unplugging 

This is an interesting paradox if you really think about it… “I’m lonely, but I can’t stop responding to emails?” 

🙁 Challenge 1: Loneliness

You really don’t realize how much time you waste standing by the coffee machine chatting until your coffee machine is in your own kitchen and you’ve been talking to your fridge for 5 minutes 😉. 

(Was this my personal experience? You decide.) 

Fridge opening and closing

But in reality, almost 1/5th of remote workers report loneliness as their biggest challenge of working online. 

This makes complete sense, especially if you transition from a corporate, people-filled job to your coworker meowing at you every 10 minutes. 

Cat saying we need to talk

No more small talk by the water-cooler, no more pow-wows in the boss’s office, and no more after-work happy hour (ok, this one may still be in the picture!).

We still have plenty of communication forms with Email, Slack, and Voxer, but it’s obvious these tools don’t fill the human-connection void the way we hoped. 

But that’s alright because the OG remote workers have already started creating some awesome solutions for your remote team, like: 

  • Coworking spaces
  • Virtual coworking groups, like DNG Inner Circle
  • Local MeetUp events 
  • Virtual group workout classes 

And if you want to host more virtual social-time opportunities in-house, check out the full list of 20 simple and entertaining bonding ideas below. 👇

🔌 Challenge 2: Unplugging 

And on the opposite end of loneliness is the ability to stop working and enjoy your free time.

But when you can’t leave your office, it becomes a struggle to leave work behind – and 22% of remote workers agree that they have trouble putting down the laptop and switching to turbo-relax-mode (and you know what? Guilty as charged!) 🙋🏻‍♀️.

Pulling the plug on laptop gif

Here are some tips to help you when hiring your totally awesome remote team.

5 Tips for Hiring Remote Teams 

Job opening image

Hiring for a remote team is a whole different ball game than in-person hiring. Because your application pool is much larger, you need to factor in areas you typically look past during an in-person hiring process. 

Here are five tips for making your remote team A1.

📇 Tip 1: Have an Extremely In-depth Application Process 

There is great talent in the online world, but there are also not-so-awesome potential candidates. 

To get the most out of your hiring journey, make your application process multiple layers with in-depth questions to weed out anyone who is not super serious about the role.

To get the most out of your hiring journey, make your application process multiple layers with in-depth questions to weed out anyone who is not super serious about the role.

Here are some examples to get you started: 

  • ❓Why are you the best fit for this role? 
  • ❓Tell me about your remote work experience. 
  • ❓What’s your leadership style? 
  • ❓Tell me about the tools you use in your work.
  • ❓What has been your biggest struggle with working online?
  • ❓What are some of your best or favorite resources to learn from? 
  • ❓How would you handle time zone differences? 
  • ❓Describe your ideal remote team culture. 
  • ❓What are your professional goals for the next 3 years? 
  • ❓Describe how you have anticipated your boss or client’s needs in the past 90 days or at your most recent place of employment. Please give a specific example.
  • ❓Please share examples of relevant work. 

🤗 Tip 2: Spot the Soft Skills

While technical skills are essential when working remotely, also keep an eye out for soft skills, such as communication style, figure-it-out ability, and independence. 

Even though this role is not in person, there is still a workplace culture and expectations that need to meet by your future employee.

Some soft skills to keep an eye out for include: 

  • Communication style 
  • Leadership ability 
  • Resourcefulness
  • Authenticity 
  • Empathy 
  • Flexibilty 

💕 Personally, my #1 make-it-or-break-it skill is kindness 💕.

🎥 Tip 3: Submit a Video

Have potential candidates submit a 2-3 minute video of themselves expressing why they would be a top candidate for your role. 

Man filming himself

This allows you to get a feel for their personality and how they conduct themselves on camera before the actual interview stage.

Your applicants can use tools like: 

🗂 Tip 4: Stay Organized 

No more ‘Send your resume to me@myself.com’ applications. Your inbox will be flooded with emails for weeks, and you will quickly lose a few. 

Instead, use an Airtable or Google Form to receive applications. This makes it easier to read them, filter them, and, most importantly – keep track of all of them. 

💸 Tip 5: Do a Paid Trial Task 

After you have narrowed down your candidates from an interview, do a paid trial task for your final 2-3 to see them in action. 

Doing a paid trial task is the secret weapon for hiring a stellar remote team member. 

If you need help hiring a remote team, check out our experienced Digital Business Managers. They can put together an entire application process for you, vet the initial candidates, and even host the first round of interviews!

Ready to hire a digital business manager?

Our Digital Business Managers are trained in project, team, and systems management as well as digital business and finance basics through the DBM Bootcamp.

 

Want ALL the juicy details on how to work online as a digital business manager?

Check out my FREE intro class which goes over what exactly a digital business manager does day-to-day, how much I make as a DBM, my 5-step plan to get you started and more!

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Want ALL the juicy details on how to work online as a digital business manager?

Check out my FREE intro class which goes over what exactly a digital business manager does day-to-day, how much I make as a DBM, my 5-step plan to get you started and more!