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3 Expert Tips for Building a Remote Workforce from Welocalize

hiring remote workers

With a new decade of talent on the rise, companies around the world are looking ahead at the trends promising to shape the next ten years of talent acquisition. Top of mind for most? The growing demand from today’s top candidates across roles and industries for remote work.

It’s an evolution that shows no signs of slowing down, with 16% of global companies now fully remote and 52% of employees working from home at least one day a week. So how can your company get on this trend? And how can you create a culture that’s good for remote workers?

Here are three tips from expert Brennan Smith, Senior Director of Talent and Community at Welocalize!

Tip #1: Create a consistent hiring process

It sounds obvious, but consistency is critical when hiring at a high volume. To help your company create a clear and scalable process, Smith recommends a three-pronged approach: defining clear standards, applying the 80/20 rule, and forecasting future hiring. 

Here’s to put each one into practice.

Defining clear standards

Clear standards are necessary to growing  your remote workforce at scale because they help your team understand the vision of your employer brand and how to execute their duties. That way, the team can experience turnover or shifts and maintain a consistent process.

At Welocalize, the hiring team of 50 makes ~450 new hires per month across different roles and functions, including marketing, quality control, and sales. They all follow the same process, so they can hire project managers one day and linguists the next without changing a thing.

Three questions to help you set consistent standards across your teams:

  • What is your talent acquisition process and what is the definition of good? 
  • Do you want to set a standard that you’re going to use for every candidate that applies to your company? 
  • How do you define that, ensure that with your team, and how do you get their buy-in?

Using the 80/20 rule

In high volume hiring, there are two tensions to look out for, says Smith: The desire to build everything exactly the same way (a team with perfect scale) versus the desire to build something completely bespoke to each and every particular team, hiring manager, role, or region. 

Neither works. High volume recruiting needs a common starting point that is flexible enough to be slightly adjusted when the situation calls for it. 

Your standard/custom breakdown should be about 80/20. At least 80% of each fill should follow the same process, regardless of team member, role, region, or hiring manager, with not more than 20% of room to make one-off optimizations for the truly unique bits.

One quick and easy starting place is to build scripts and templates to help scale your best practices. And while team members might be resistant at first, great templates and scripts don’t feel restrictive if they allow you to improve constantly and get your work done faster!

Forecasting future hiring needs

Being able to plan future hiring needs is a key driver of high-growth recruiting. But you can’t do it alone! Meeting with your CFO and hiring managers on the regular ensures you have an idea pipeline, stay on top of business trends to look for new hires, and can plan for any attrition.

“Meeting regularly with hiring managers to understand business trends is critical to making sure that you’re able to deliver on your hiring goals,” says Smith. 

Tip #2: Determine which roles can be remote

Not all roles are suitable for remote work. “Sometimes you have a role that could be successfully remote, but the wrong candidate, or you have a candidate that could easily be remote in a role that needs to be with the other teams they’re supporting onsite,” says Smith.

How to tell if a role is suited for remote work:

  • The role has clear and objective success metrics
  • You can easily count the amount of output units that the team member is doing (e.g., phone calls, emails, dollars or units sold, placements made, etc.)
  • It’s easy to know when the person is available or unavailable
  • The person is part of an existing team, or one that already has remote members
  • The role’s role responsibilities either do not require high levels of collaboration, or if they do, the team supports robust opportunities via conferencing, internal chat, etc.

How to tell if a role is unsuited for remote work:

  • The role influences other teams
  • It’s brand new or a role you’re building or creating
  • It requires constant collaboration

Things to look for in remote employees:

  • Great time management skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Demonstrated ability to separate work from personal time

Tip #3: Measure and improve

Implementing individual and team goals and sharing results as frequently as possible is a key part of a transparent culture. It’s also super handy for getting everyone on the same page when you have a remote workforce. In short, KPIs empower teams to make better business decisions!

So what should you be looking at? That really depends on your talent team and company. Determine how you want to measure, what makes sense for your goals, then think about what is important to the business and know that if you’re measuring it, your team will respond.

KPIs help your remote team:

  • Prioritize their day by giving them clarity on what’s most important (if you’re measuring it, it’s important)
  • Unify your definition of what is “good” (e.g., 45 days, 98%, etc.) 
  • Focus on how they can achieve by eliminating any questions about what to achieve

Tips for how to best utilize KPIs:

  • Pick only two or three things you’re going to evangelize that shapes the work your team does, e.g. Time-to-Fill, Quality-of-Hire, Customer Service Score
  • Break down the “why” behind tasks to show how things like time-to-fill impact business
  • Share results often and consistently
  • Loudly celebrate achievement

“In April, nobody wants to hear how January and December were,” says Smith. “So it’s important that the key items that you believe drive your success, the things you really care about, the things that you’re asking everybody to contribute to, are communicated over and over again. Make sure that you let folks know every month, every week, every day if you can, how the team is performing to expectations.”

Get a five-step plan for remote culture success

Looking for more expert advice on hiring and building a remote workforce to win the next decade of talent? Discover a five-step approach from Welocalize and Lever in our guide, 5 Steps to Hiring and Building a Remote Culture!