By: Sarah Archer
Remote work is gaining in prevalence for a good reason. It has a huge number of benefits for both companies and employees. This has led to many Millennials, for example, seeking remote work exclusively. Work from home statistics suggest that as many as 74% of people would consider leaving their current job for a comparable remote position.
However, there are some skills involved in remote work that are different from what is necessary for traditional office work. In interviews, it’s important to focus on potential hires who have related experience and can demonstrate they can telecommute efficiently.
With that in mind, here are some interview questions to help you hire dynamic, effective remote workers.
1. Where do/would you work from? You want to know if they are working from a dedicated space like a home office or a coworking space. This could be a better situation than if they spend a workday on their couch or at the kitchen table.
2. What tools do you typically use for communication as a remote worker? You want to know how well acquainted your interviewee is with video and management software and what their wifi situation is like. Many hiring managers choose to perform interviews for remote workers via online video rather than in person, so they can see how proficient the candidate is with a webcam and online interaction.
3. What other organizational strategies and software do you use? A familiarity with management software, like Trello or Basecamp or Asana, is usually very useful for remote workers, particularly those in management positions.
4. How do you balance life and work? What is a typical day for you like when you work from home? It’s important to hear that your potential remote employee is neither constantly distracted or “on call 24-7.” A new hire who says they never take breaks and eats from their desk is someone who will likely burn out fast.
5. Have you faced any conflicts when working remotely and how did you handle them? When meeting face-to-face may not be an option for team members, it’s useful to know how a manager has tactfully resolved disagreement from a distance.
6. Tell me about an issue you faced and how you resolved it on your own? An ability to recognize issues and troubleshoot remotely is something that is integral to telecommuting.
7. How would you connect with your peers and keep up with workplace or industry advances? One of the difficulties of working from home is that it can be isolating. This isn’t just about loneliness (though that is part of it), it can also feel isolating in a professional sense. Something you’ll want to learn is how a potential remote employee plans to combat loneliness and how they intend to keep up on what is happening company-wide and in the forefront of the industry.
While most people thrive, not everyone is well-suited to remote work. It’s important to discover this during the interview process, so you have the best hire possible. Using questions like these, that focus on the skills necessary for working from home effectively, can help you determine who is right for your remote job.
Sarah Archer is a Content Marketing Manager at Siege Media and Your Best Digs who works remotely while traveling. She’s passionate about developing high-quality content for diverse industries ranging from startups to Fortune 500 companies. When she’s not creating content, she’s likely hiking a new trail or mapping out the next destination.