We’re sailing into uncharted and choppy waters in the recruitment industry at the moment. The current COVID-19 pandemic has hit the industry hard, along with many other businesses and industries. As the UK prepares to enter its second month in lockdown, it can feel like businesses have had no choice but to put all recruitment plans on ice.
Not everything has ground to a halt, however, and we expect that over the coming weeks businesses and departments will begin to find their feet in the world of remote working, and will continue to build their businesses even when they can’t get into the office. When this starts to happen, recruitment is going to pick up again… but remotely. It is time to begin looking at other operational priorities, and recruitment should be high up on the list.
We’re lucky enough to be dealing with this during a time where we have technology on our side. Video calls, screen sharing, and other smart technology means that you will be able to screen and interview candidates without too much difference to your usual process, and this could also enable you to find the candidates that are able to adapt when required.
Working and hiring remotely does not mean that you are restricting yourself or your business, it means that you are adapting. We’ve put together some of our top pointers for remote interviewing and onboarding, to help you keep your business moving whilst everything else slows down!
Figure out your technology
Before arranging any online interviews, training, or meetings, make sure you and your team are completely clued up on the technology that you’re going to be using. Of course, no matter how prepared you are, sometimes there may be technical difficulties, but taking a bit of extra time beforehand to make sure that everything is running smoothly, and everybody knows what they are doing, will pay off in the long run! Another great tip is to always have a back-up plan, just in case.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are now self-isolating and working from home, which makes in-person interviews near impossible. This does not mean that interviewing and screening needs to stop, however, as there are many ways of conducting these interviews whilst working remotely.
At Adam, we are predominantly use Microsoft Teams video calling to conduct screening and meetings with clients and candidates alike, as well as our internal meetings. However, there is a lot of different video calling software to choose from. Skype is of course the first one that comes to most people’s minds, and Zoom has launched itself to the forefront of videocalling, but there’s also the likes of GoogleDuo and Tango. Even WhatsApp and FaceTime can be used in a pinch!
A video interview can be much more useful than a phone interview, as you are still able to read body language and facial clues, as well as possibly record the interview to refer to later. It also has the added bonus that nobody needs to pay any travel expenses to attend the interview.
Stretch out the hiring process slightly
Hiring a new member of staff can be tricky, you have to be as sure as possible that you are hiring the right person for the job and your company, which means you need to get to know the person as well as you can. Remote hiring makes this harder, but not impossible. It could be worth adding an extra stage to your hiring process – another interview with some other team members, or possibly a short pre-screening test.
This little bit of extra effort can really help you learn more about the candidates, which will mean that you can be more confident when making your hiring decisions.
Involve the whole team
By giving a team the chance to help screen a candidate, not only are you helping spread your workload, but you are also getting the opinions of the team that could end up working alongside your new hire. This helps you discover if the candidate would not only be a good fit for the role, but also for the team and your company.
Once you’ve made your hire, how do you go about getting them up and running in their new role when you can’t get them into the office? E-learning!
Getting an e-learning system set up can be quite time-intensive, which can make it seem off-putting. However, it is worth remembering that once you have an e-learning system in place, it will make all future training much easier! You can use the current situation and need to hire and train remotely as the perfect excuse to finally get your company set up with an e-learning program that really works for your business.
Make sure to get regular feedback from your new hire about the e-learning process, as they are able to test everything for you as you go.
If you have gaps in your staffing, but don't have the resources to onboard remotely at the moment, it could be a great idea to look into hiring a contractor to plug those gaps. We have some advice on hiring contractors here.
The main thing to remember during the current crisis is that being remote from your office doesn’t have to restrict you from hiring and onboarding – all it takes is a little bit of adapting to your new circumstances, and Adam is here to support you the whole way. If you have any questions, or want some advice, please reach out to us!