9. Recruiting & onboarding

Recruiting

The main difference and advantage of attracting specialists to a remote team is a search among a wide pool of talents unlimited by geography. In fact, the distance helps you choose the person who really is the best candidate, not because he or she lives in the same city and is more or less suitable.

In remote recruiting, there are no other major differences in comparison with hiring office specialists. The remote scheme in itself will not become a problem in the practical implementation of the selection if all the relevant processes are established correctly. We have formulated several effective rules for ourselves.

1. Emphasis on values

When selecting people for a team it is important to immediately focus on the values and culture of the company. If the candidate shares and understands your principles, it will be easy for him or her to join the already existing system and show the results. A strong team is united by the same approach to work, a high degree of responsibility, and self-organization of its members, not by the walls of the same office. In our case, a careful selection of specialists translates into a lengthy collaboration: some colleagues have been working with us for five to seven years and do not plan to change anything.

2. The importance of personality traits

In addition to the necessary competencies and ambitions, it is important to focus on the personal qualities of candidates. Similar views not only on work but on life allow people to feel comfortable with each other, which positively affects overall productivity and the desire to move forward. This is especially valuable for remote employees, as they need to motivate each other over the network in the absence of daily live meetings. When newcomers join us, they often mention a pleasant, cozy atmosphere in the company. This effect can be achieved precisely due to the attention to personal traits apart from professional knowledge and skills.

3. Qualification assessment

Of course, in addition to a CV, the portfolio and the test task always help you understand the level of the candidate. If you can evaluate the quality of work before the interview, you can save a lot of time. It’s nice to see a potential colleague in action, and with the help of the test task you’ll find out how a person will cope, what questions will be asked, if he will be able to stick to deadlines, and so on.

4. Convenient work system

Explain the accepted system of work and result control to the candidate. If you, for example, run projects in Confluence and communicate in Slack, talk about this at the interview. In the end it should be convenient for everyone to interact in a certain way. So, by mentioning these things beforehand, you can immediately avoid unwanted surprises and disagreements.

5. Involving foreign talents

While adding specialists from other countries to a team, it is necessary to take several points into account. Firstly, mind the time difference. Think in advance about the schedule to find a two- to four-hour intersection for collaboration with other colleagues. Secondly, it is equally important to avoid the language barrier, both within the team and for communicating with the clients. In addition, it is necessary to resolve the issue of legal and tax requirements in each country. It is customary for us to discuss and set the gross salary, and then everyone pays local taxes independently.

6. Growth opportunities and culture

Tell the candidates why cool specialists choose your company. For example, we focus on high-quality and complex projects using only new technologies, plus we have a flat hierarchy in the team, well-established work processes, and ongoing training. We encourage offline communication and plan team meetings and trips. A good compensation package alone is unlikely to surprise a strong candidate.

Briefly about where and how we look for colleagues

One of the main search sites is assumed to be LinkedIn. Here, as in other systems, in order to form more accurate queries we use the Boolean search (logical operators). We also advertise vacancies on job search sites, specialized resources, and forums where developers gather, for example, DOU and Habr. We work with a platform for freelancers called Upwork. We communicate and post vacancies in Facebook communities. Additionally, we attract external recruiting agencies.

Onboarding

Quality onboarding plays a key role in the successful hire of a new employee, especially for a remote job. After all, it is somewhat more difficult to adapt organically and to immediately understand the processes and culture without being at the office. But this process can still be enjoyable and productive. The main thing is to approach the issue structurally, draw up a clear plan of adaptation, and appoint a responsible person at each stage. In general, try to immerse a newcomer into the work properly. Decide what information to tell at the beginning, whom to introduce to, what to give for reading, what meetings to connect to, what task to put first, and so on. Our onboarding program can be divided into three stages. For every stage, there is a checklist with tasks carried out by the HR, BA, CFO, marketing manager, and appointed mentor.

Stage 1: Before the start

  1. We agree on the date and time of the first working day.

  2. We sign the Job Offer and NDA.

  3. We inform the team about the starting date of the new colleague.

  4. We create a mailbox and open access to Slack, Timer, and Confluence.

  5. We send a welcome letter the day before the start.

  6. We determine the project on which the new employee will work.

  7. We create an activity plan for the first working day. It usually includes an introduction to the rules and setting up a local working environment.

Stage 2: First day

  1. We introduce the employee to the team.

  2. We provide documentation and a job description, and we talk about the work process in general.

  3. We convey the values accepted in the team.

  4. We explain the rules and procedures in the company: the schedule, calculation and payment of wages, vacation planning, organization of training, etc.

  5. We appoint a mentor from a team that helps and directs a new colleague in training for gradual growth.

Stage 3: Support (one to three months)

  1. We help the new colleague adapt to the project.

  2. We provide feedback.

  3. We observe and record performance indicators.

  4. We make monthly one-on-one calls.

  5. We hand over a welcome package at the end of the trial period.

  6. We set goals for further development.