In the past two decades, remote work has become extremely popular worldwide. Many companies have introduced remote work policies for their workers and some of them have even given up the physical office altogether. Telecommuting has multiple benefits for the employer as well as the employee. However, not everyone has what it takes to be a successful remote worker. Working without in-person supervision isn’t just like working in a physical office. It is important to recognize valuable traits in remote workers before hiring them, and we’ll tell you exactly what to look for.
Remote workers should be responsive and punctual
There is nothing worse than waiting for your employees to respond when you need answers ASAP. You cannot just go and talk to a remote employee if they don’t respond on time.The nature of virtual work demands a high level of punctuality and quick responses.Tardiness in answering questions, joining meetings, and meeting deadlines can cause frustration and hinder productivity. You should be able to reach a remote worker anytime during their work hours. Good remote workers understand how their work affects their colleagues’ work and respect everyone’s time.
Discipline is an important trait to have as a remote worker
Unfortunately, staying disciplined is often harder when working remotely. Office drama can be pretty distracting but working from home isn’t without distractions either. Your remote workers may be distracted by family members, pets, neighbors, etc. Depending on the nature of their job, they have more or less flexible work schedules and deadlines. They are often tempted to stay up late, sleep a little longer in the mornings, or handle personal matters during the workday.
No matter what their job is, no one can be fully productive unless they get enough sleep. Furthermore, setting deadlines and following through on them is a must. That is why discipline is one of the most valuable characteristics of remote workers.
Remote employees should have the right kind of motivation
Motivating your employees is not the easiest thing in the world. The fact that someone sits in an office eight hours a day does not mean they are productive—they could be doing who knows what on their computer. Still, motivating in-office employees is easier than motivating remote employees.
Employees, both remote and in-office, who are intrinsically motivated are more likely to succeed. Remote workers should show a high level of self-motivation and independence. The best remote workers will take action without being told to. If you choose your workers wisely, you won’t need to hover over them all the time. What you need are workers who are motivated by something bigger than themselves, committed to your company’s mission and enhancing your company’s image.
Problem-solving skills and big-picture focus are necessary
Many people will follow instructions to the letter and then have a hundred questions for their supervisors. Such workers will waste a lot of time. A person who’s always looking for mentors and seniors is not the right fit for a remote team. Remote workers need to focus on the big picture and rely more on their own problem-solving skills. The ability to figure things out by themselves is one of the most valuable traits in remote workers. Problem-solvers will get things done on time with the information they have. They will make mistakes from time to time, but they won’t make the same mistake twice.
Remote workers should be detail-oriented
Candidates who are detail-oriented are the best choice for remote positions. Perfectionists with intrinsic personalities make great remote workers since they have to meet certain personal standards in addition to the standards set by the company.
Remote workers have to be tech savvy
Modern technology has revolutionized the business world. Nowadays, tech skills are in demand in every industry. For example, all successful businesses use business automation software solutions. If you’re in the service industry, PLM can help you with your service-oriented business and your employees need to keep up with the technology you use.
Technological advancement is one of the main reasons why remote work has become so popular. After all, telecommuting would not be possible without technology. Your remote employees will spend most of their time using computers and other electronic devices. That is why they must learn to use important software and programs efficiently. Your IT team should be there to support them but they should be able to solve simple problems themselves.
Strong communication skills are valuable traits in remote workers
Remote workers need good communication skills mainly because they do not spend time in the office. They should be able to communicate via phone, email and other communication channels in a clear and concise manner. In most cases, you’ll be able to recognize a good communicator by the way they handle the job application and interview.
It’s all about the attitude
A worker with a big ego and biases is an employer’s worst nightmare. On the other hand, an employee with a growth mindset will easily fit into a virtual ecosystem. An open-minded candidate who is willing to learn and work hard is a better choice than the most talented person with an impressive resume and a fancy degree who’s entitled and lazy.
Ideal candidates are experienced in remote work
Not necessarily one of the most valuable traits in remote workers, but remote experience is a plus. When hiring remote workers, those who already know what it’s like to work independently should have an advantage. Having sufficient experience implies that a candidate already possesses some of the abovementioned traits and knows what to expect.