Six Tips to Hire Remote Workers for Your IT Department

Hiring for remote work is a great way to expand your IT department without incurring the costs of office space, insurance, and other overhead. Remote employees come with their own set of challenges, though. So here are some tips to help you hire for remote IT jobs! 

Screen applicants through an interview process before you hire.

An interview on the phone gives you a chance to weed out applicants who aren’t seriously interested and skilled enough for your remote work. Ask behavioral questions (e.g., describe a time when you had to resolve customer issues independently) rather than easy interview questions (e.g., what’s your favorite computer program?)

Set clear expectations about workload and deadlines.

Setting clear expectations for remote IT jobs at the beginning of a project will avoid any confusion about what’s getting done and by when. That said, you should also expect that some remote workers won’t work as efficiently as on-site employees might. Some people simply function better in an office environment. You can even offer incentives to your remote staff for working more quickly or meeting milestones.

Offer benefits to attract candidates. 

Offering benefits can be a way to compete with other IT companies for talent. For example, remote workers often value working from home and set their own hours. Other benefits your remote employees might appreciate: perks like travel, additional training, and certifications, paid time off, extra sick days or PTO, flexible working hours, and professional development opportunities.

Make it clear that you expect to communicate frequently during projects.

Employees for remote IT jobs may not be accustomed to lots of communication, so it’s important to reiterate the importance of regular communication with your remote staff. Even for short projects, stick to a strict weekly meeting schedule or send out daily reports. Set up conference calls and video chats if possible. You should also offer quick email responses to questions.

Establish clear boundaries between working hours and home life.

Remote workers have to be just as conscious of their working hours as on-site employees are. Don’t expect them always to answer emails or phone calls at home, even if it’s during off-hours. And if your remote worker has a family, let him know that you respect his need to spend time with them.

Offer continuing education opportunities.

Remote workers benefit from working from home, which allows you to offer a flexible schedule for advanced training. A professional IT certification can make a great job perk for a remote employee! If your employees are going somewhere on vacation or taking day trips, they might be interested in participating in seminars and other professional learning opportunities at these times.

Bottom line

Hiring for remote work is a great way to expand your IT department without the costs of office space, insurance, and other overhead. The tips above should help you fill those new positions with skilled employees who enjoy working from home.