Print this page

Practical Advice for Recruiting Virtual Personnel

Recruiting virtual personnel necessarily differs from the way recruitment is conducted in the on-site context. As a result, this process can be confusing and feel quite impersonal for the inexperienced. This guide provides some useful advice on how to approach the task of virtual recruitment in a professional, humane, and confident way.

Set the virtual worker profile

Before embarking on the recruitment process, it is essential to define the profiles of the people, your team needs and the common objectives they will have. This is the best way to organize your process recruitment and hiring of the people who will collaborate on your team.

Here are some factors to keep in mind as you start to define the profile of your virtual worker:

  • Duration of the project.
  • Amount of time your prospective collaborator will be working on the project (full-time, part-time, on-demand…)
  • Duties that the project includes.
  • Required education level.
  • Languages the worker needs to know.
  • Talents and skills necessary for the project.
  • Specialized knowledge in the required field.
  • General work experience.
  • Previous experience as a virtual worker.
Preliminary Steps

After you have defined your virtual worker’s profile, there are some steps you will need to take before beginning the interview process:

  • Search for virtual workers and professionals that fit the profile.
  • Review résumés and set aside those that do not meet all of your requirements.
  • Prepare content for the virtual personnel recruitment interview.
  • Plan individual or group interviews.
The Virtual Interview

In order to humanize the virtual recruitment process and truly get to know the candidates applying for the job, we encourage conducting a video interview with your potential remote workers.

Follow these steps while conducting the virtual interview to get the most beneficial outcome:

  1. Include an introduction of the session and presentation.
  2. Use guiding questions for the session (review the existing interview script to provide more structure to the interview).
  3. Test the applicants as needed.
  4. Clearly describe the position you are offering (define the project, duration, necessary availability, duties, pay rate, etc.).
  5. Pay attention to the candidate’s participation in the interview and their perceptions of the proposed position in your virtual personnel.
  6. Take note of the most relevant aspects of each candidate to weigh out the pros and cons more easily
  7. End the interview with conclusions and closing remarks.

Additional interview considerations
  • Logistics: Review and prepare all necessary communication tools for the virtual interview. Your internet connection, sound, microphone, speakers and camera should be in excellent working order for the session to avoid miscommunication and time loss.
    • Tip: if the candidate says that they cannot turn on the camera at the beginning of the interview, reschedule the meeting.
  • Adequate space: Conduct the virtual interview in a quiet place to avoid interruptions and background noise. Look for the same attributes in the space the candidate will use for the interview.
  • Attitude: The impression you make will affect the first impression the candidates will have of your company. Keep a proactive and positive attitude throughout the virtual recruitment process, particularly in interviews.
The final decision

The ultimate decision on which remote worker you hire for your virtual project is not always clear-cut. Here are some considerations that will help you finalize your recruitment process and get the best results.

Virtual worker’s traits

During the entire virtual recruitment process, keep in mind the 4 key traits that all virtual employees must have, regardless of whether they are full-time employees or temporary collaborators.

Consistency

Look at each candidate's consistency and how they fit the profile you outlined at the beginning of your virtual recruitment process. This will help you decide who is best suited for the position. If you see a need for it, keep a scorecard for each candidate.

Second interview

Some virtual recruitment processes require a bit more detail and precision. In these cases, it is useful to hold a second round of interviews with the candidates who fit the virtual worker profile the best. The second interview gives you an opportunity to measure up and touch on additional factors that will give you a better sense of the remote workers’ knowledge and skill set.

Second opinion

Sometimes, one opinion or point of view is not a sufficient basis for deciding which personnel is best suited for the virtual job. In such cases, request the opinion of a co-worker who has adequate knowledge of the project to help you make the final decision.

Response and confirmation

Once you have decided on which person or people fit the virtual worker profile the best, send a response and confirmation email to thank the candidates for participating and share the final outcome of the recruitment process with all of the candidates - not just the successful ones. This is a part of your company's good image and shows that you respect both the work you do, and the people who want to work with you.

Database

Even though you have staffed your current project, maintain a database of the applicants who were not chosen for the job, listing the types of tasks they might do well in. While they might not fit your immediate needs, these candidates could prove useful for upcoming virtual projects, making future recruitment processes quicker and easier.