When you are looking for remote workers, you want people who have experience with little supervision (well, little in-person supervision) that are able to show results from the work that they are being asked to do. Your business has to be able to count on them, without you standing over their shoulder and making sure that they are getting the job done correctly and efficiently.
Even though they are working remotely, they have to be team players. If an applicant does not demonstrate the ability to work with other team members or understand the concept of constant communication with head office and other team members, they might not be suited for your team. Because wherever your team members are located, holding daily meetings can keep them united and working towards one goal. You need a remote worker who can also check in with other team members a few times each day.
Because most remote working situations require communication, you need to find people who know and understand the technology that you use to communicate. They need to understand your platforms, whether it be video chat or cloud-based file sharing. As a business owner, you cannot afford to change how you and your team communicate or collaborate simply to accommodate a new team member.
Remote team members should have the ability to travel to your main workspace when they need to work from a professional environment or to attend in-person meetings with management or other team members. As the boss and leader of the team, you need to make sure that you have a ‘floating desk’ that team members can utilize if they need to work away from their normal situation from time to time. Many businesses use team space that has multiple work surfaces that are not necessarily dedicated desks.
Every team (especially remote teams) needs physical time together and opportunities for team building events or seminars. When team members have an in-person connection, they tend to be more willing to work together and understand each other’s points of view when communicating remotely. Even if the team events are not at your office, they could be held in the meeting rooms or seminar training rooms that are available at office business centres.
Working from home can have its distractions, so finding remote workers who have the discipline and the skill set to stay focused is key to your small business. This also means having remote workers that have a dedicated space to do the work you are asking – not just their kitchen counter or their living room. You want them to have a dedicated space like a home office, den, basement or a garage that is set aside for work only – some place where they can go into ‘work mode’ and not ‘household management’ mode.