The Survival Guide for Hiring and Using Remote Workers
If one of your business goals for the upcoming year is to grow, one of the first things you’re likely considering is bringing on new or extra staff. After running the numbers, you may not think it’s possible to hire someone to come into the office every day. Overhead, workers’ compensation, health insurance, benefits, salary, training expenses, paid time off…the list can keep growing. If the monetary investment into hiring a new employee seems out of reach, maybe you’ve thought about hiring and using a remote worker. Remote workers can be found all over the world and with skills that can help any small business. Yet, hiring and relying on someone you may not ever meet in person can be terrifying. Here’s what you need to know for hiring and using remote workers.
Understanding and Explaining Your Needs from the Beginning
Before you begin your search for a remote worker, you should understand and be able to explain what it is that you need. Are you looking to improve your website? If so, what’s the goal for doing that? Converting potential clients? Collecting leads? Presenting yourself as an expert in your industry? Are you looking for someone to screen your calls or perform client intake over the phone? If so, what are the key qualities you and your market share want and need? Do you need someone with experience in your industry? Do you just need someone with fantastic customer service?
Also, you must be able to do more than identify and explain your goals. You must also decide if you’re only interested in the end result or if you want someone to follow a step-by-step process that you designed. If it’s the latter, it’s important to understand that the IRS may deem your remote worker your employee. That could make you legally responsible for withholding taxes and providing certain benefits. So, while it is fine to offer a training program to show your remote workers how you want to reach a certain result, be careful about insisting on your desire to dictate how they do their work.
If you’re able to explain your needs to yourself, you’ll communicate better with the remote workers during the interview process and during your work relationship. Other considerations include explaining all job responsibilities and if you need the person to be available during specific hours.
Finding an Experienced Remote Worker
Once you understand exactly what it is that you need your remote worker to do, it’s time to find some potential candidates. First, think about the amount of experience that you need your remote worker to have in your industry or with the required tasks. If you have more than one part of your business that you want handled by a remote worker, consider hiring a remote company such as Clients ARM. The benefit of remote companies is that you generally get a team of remote workers while you usually only have contact with one account manager. This can be an ideal solution because you only have to vet the remote company and you do not have to spend time looking at profiles of individual remote workers. This can save you a lot of time (on top of saving money when compared to hiring a traditional employee).
There are websites devoted to matching remote workers with companies. However, you generally have to pay a fee on top of paying the remote worker. You do get the benefit of looking at multiple remote workers to find the one that seems best for your company.
Communication Is Essential
Since we’re talking about giving up essential business tasks to a total stranger, it’s important that we talk about the importance of communication. Choosing a remote worker with great communication skills is essential. Regardless of whether this person will only be talking to you or talking with your clients or potential clients, they must be able to establish trust and maintain communication. Watch for red flags such as slow response to email inquiries, not responding to meeting requests, and signs that they don’t understand and speak the language that you need with near native fluency.
Their written communication skills should also be second to none. Good written communication skills reduce the risk of misunderstanding others. Make sure that you communicate with potential candidates in a number of ways so that you can evaluate their communication skills.
Create Policies and Procedures
One of the best ways that you can get and stay on the same page with your remote worker is to create a set of policies and procedures related to their job duties. Of course, you should be open to their feedback regarding best practices, but having a well-crafted policies and procedures document can help guide your remote worker through items if you’re not available.
Regular Interaction with the Remote Worker
It’s also important to have regular interaction with your remote worker. This means setting weekly or biweekly meetings via Skype or another collaborative tool to discuss current progress, goals, and any questions or concerns that either of you have about the business relationship. This is a proactive way to keep small problems from getting larger. It’s also important to have an “open door” policy. Make sure that your remote worker feels at ease when it comes to reaching out to you via phone or email. Also, make sure that you return their calls or emails in a timely manner.
Learn More about Clients ARM
If you’re interested in partnering with a remote worker, we encourage you contact Clients ARM. We are a remote company based in the United States. We provide numerous services for lawyers, doctors, healthcare facilities, engineers, veterinarians, and other service based company. With more than 30 years of experience, you get the help that you need at a price you can afford. Contact Clients ARM today to schedule your free review to learn how we can help you meet your business goals in 2017.