Entrepreneurs

Hiring Remotely? These 6 Interview Questions Will Tell You All You Need to Know

With many applicants searching for remote positions, hiring managers and recruiters should know the differences and drawbacks of this work style when screening candidates for these roles. When you’re hiring remotely, you should be looking for talent who not only has the skills and requirements to do the job itself but also understands what it takes to successfully handle the new pressures and expectations to work virtually with a team. 

So when it comes down to interviewing time, you’ll need to come up with questions that get at the core of this need. You’ll want questions that focus on remote work and unexpected scenarios that could occur related to the role.

When coming up with questions, think about the best answers you would want to hear and focus on the quality of conversation from each candidate. This is your chance to determine if they are a good fit for your team. Think: reliability, initiative, communication, independence, and conflict resolution. 

Here are a few interview questions you will want to consider, 

1. How do you plan to keep yourself motivated and engaged when working from home? 

A lot goes into completing projects remotely or otherwise, but this your chance to get assurance from the applicant. They should highlight how they would approach day-to-day tasks and understand the challenges and distractions from working from home. Their response should also tell you about their work ethic and their ability to work independently. 

2. Can you tell me about a time when you had to adapt to change? 

Remote work is all about being flexible and being able to adapt to new situations and routines. Whether an applicant shares a traditional workplace experience or a situation from another remote role, this is their chance to prove how they would function in this role. Ideally, the perfect response should highlight the actions they took leading up to a successful result. 

3. What is your approach to maintaining communication and collaboration with a distributed team? 

This is your chance to see if the applicant has really thought about a remote work dynamic and how much they value working collaboratively with a team. Their answer should also reassure you that they are eager to grow and learn with your team and if they have the initiative. 

4. How do you prefer to be managed? 

With the lack of in-person interaction, remote work naturally changes the way team leaders manage their employees. While this question is focused on various types and their preferred work style, this really goes in-depth with the understanding of what working from home would look like. Communication with your team is more important than ever, so they should come into the job knowing that constant communication should not be mistaken as micromanagement. 

5. Can you highlight one memorable moment in your career? 

From my experience, this is one question that interviewees love to open up about. By sharing one of the proudest moments of their career, you have a better understanding of how they value doing something impactful for a collaborative team or independent project.

Depending on their answer, your follow-up question should be whether or not they’d be open to doing something similar for your team in the future. While you are hiring for remote work, the ideal candidate should be looking into the future even beyond working from home. 

6. What transferable skills and other talents have you gained outside of your work experience?

Are they eager to learn? Are they natural leaders? Are they creative? Are they tech-savvy? While related work experience is a crucial part of one’s resume, it’s also great to keep in mind that other transferable skills your candidate may have. Them highlighting a few of their past experiences and talents could potentially give you additional ideas and plans for the future and a better sense of how they could seamlessly be a part of your team.

Knowing their overall skill set and talents also allows you to see if they could contribute to different departments and projects — benefiting your overall team goals and making work more enjoyable for them.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

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