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Onboarding and recruiting remotely

Onboarding and recruiting remotely

Posted on April 2020 By Nicholas Farley

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Whilst it may be difficult, businesses in the marketing and creative industries are still recruiting, and onboarding staff who they may never have met face to face.

We’ve spoken with clients who are actively recruiting, and the biggest difficulty is making sure they’re doing a good job with the onboarding process remotely.

There is a lot of information out there about onboarding and working remotely, these are some of the things that we have seen first-hand work well.

Recruiting Remotely

There is no doubt that the current situation has made recruiting new members of your team more difficult, at least practically, but there are a huge number of great candidates out there and available immediately. 

Although the current situation has made the generic recruitment process obsolete, there are still options to recruit remotely. Some businesses may not be open to hiring during this time, but others are seeing this as an opportunity to take their pick of the best talent.

We are still actively speaking and completing the initial screening with plenty of candidates and are operating as usual, so this process remains unchanged for us.

Once we have a shortlist for you, start with a phone interview, it is a great way to get an initial impression of a candidate. Or if you would prefer, dive straight into a video interview using Zoom, Google Hangouts or Skype.

It is a little different to meeting face to face which may feel strange, so we suggest a mixture of video interviews, phone calls and tasks such as presentations to be completed remotely to ensure you get a chance to assess the candidate thoroughly.

Onboarding

Communication & Reassurance 

It is always a nervous time starting a new job, but for the candidates looking for work in these times, it can be highly stressful. As a hiring manager, it’s important to communicate properly and reassure them throughout the interview process.

One of our candidates who recently started their new role remotely told us how their new manager called them for an initial welcome chat and then followed up with an email and their mobile number, letting them know to get in touch any time they needed. 

Help Them With Technology

Where would we be without laptops, VPNs, Slack, Zoom and all the other applications and technologies helping us at the moment? It’s the time for the IT department to shine. 

The sooner your new starter is set up from a technology standpoint the better. We suggest sending equipment via courier, ensuring they have access to the internal network if your organisation has one, and giving them a call to talk through it all. The more communication, the easier it will be to get started.

A Structured Welcome Programme

Structure is important to everyone at the moment and for a new starter having a clear and structured welcome programme in place is vital. It’s important to make sure your new starter isn’t overloaded with information and meetings – but a structure to their first week or two will definitely start them off well. 

This can include everything from introducing the team on a Zoom call to a presentation on the culture of the company as well as what their day to day tasks will include. 

Keep in contact

Keep in regular contact with them and ensure they feel comfortable being able to call you if they need to, but also don’t be overbearing. Show them that you trust them and don’t need to check up on them constantly. Put a regular call or zoom chat in with them, on a daily basis at first and then less frequently if you feel things are going well. 

Have fun and get to know them

One of the most difficult things we are hearing from clients is that they are struggling to ensure new starters feel at home in the business and with their colleagues when they might never have met them.

It’s a difficult challenge to overcome at the moment, but try and ensure that as well as introducing them to the company and their job, you introduce them to the people too. 

There are plenty of great ways that have been thought up recently about how to stay connected with your team and keep a strong company culture alive. Friday drinks, quizzes, show and tells are all ways to make new starts feel more settled in their new virtual team. 

At Stopgap we have regular Zoom meetings, virtual Friday drinks and a Whatsapp group. All are ways we can check in on each other and chat about things as we would in the office.

If your considering recruiting remotely or want to chat about virtual onboarding within your organisation, feel free to reach out and we would be happy to help.