A Handbook For Remote Work & Remote Interviews

Your kid won’t work. In an office. But she might work better than you had. Because she would be working in a remote position.

Computer and the internet changed how you work. Earlier, when you were in the office – most of the things were done on paper. And now they have transitioned into the computer. Because of the internet, there is a record which everyone can access.

Things are easier. Doing work is magical. And now you are used to it. The next progression is happening – at a slow rate.

Because you are now bored with the situation. In-office, you are forced to dress a certain way, look a certain way and join in many unnecessary conflicts. You wish for invisibility so that you can get your work done without everyone forcing you to do, look and act in a certain way.

And now, it’s possible to be invisible. Remote job to your rescue. One where you join the company but don’t report physically. Because now, many people have realized – since, computer and internet exists and many other software tools, you needn’t be present physically.

But since, this is new – many people are lost. The employers are struggling to adapt and leave behind the old systems. It’s tough. But everything is at some time.

It’s you who has to propel things forward. Remote work is the latest fashion, and it is here to stay. So let’s understand it better – so you are equipped to deal with it.

What Is Remote Work

Ideally, the remote work is the one which doesn’t bother what your geographical location is. But many confuse – ‘work at home‘ and ‘remote work’.

If your company will hire only from a certain geographical location, then the company is a traditional company. And within that company, they might have a facility called ‘work from home’. Which is entitled to you in case of emergencies or once a month or so.

You still have to come to the office. Your hiring is dependent on your geographical location. This isn’t remote work. This is a traditional job which has ‘work from home’ as a feature for a specific duration.

Remote work is when a company is willing to hire from any geographical locations as long as they have computer and internet. Because that is the minimum, they need to do the job, apart from their qualifications. Rest of software can be provided by the company.

As an employer, you should know the difference between ‘work from home’ and ‘remote work. Remember to list job postings with proper names. So the remote workers aren’t tricked. Because many employers advertise, ‘remote work’ and mention a geographical location.

They do this because they want to look cool because they are offering remote work. They aren’t. Stop misleading yourself and others.

How To Do Remote Interviews

If you are looking for remote work, then start building your portfolio, proof of work. For example, if you are coder, then make an app or something, if you are a painter than have many paintings on your portfolio and so on.

If you are an employer then realize since it is remote work, it is open to everyone. So the qualifications would be bad to ask. The best way is to put the job postings on your website and on a popular job board. Let the people send in their information along with a portfolio.

Remember, even if your job posting is worldwide, you won’t get more applications than now. Because not everyone is looking for a job at the same time. Also, not everyone might be wanting to work at your company. Go through the applications. Take your time. Because automation can’t judge the quality.

And then you can shortlist people based on their portfolio submitted. Also, reply to each one who didn’t go through.

Now to the shortlisted candidate, give a project which is same to all. And then choose the top 3. And then interview for final agreements and then hire the best candidate.

Remember a good rule of thumb is this – if you want to hire 10 candidates then shortlist 30 and then after project interview the best 10. And if someone backs out, then go to the next candidate.

If you are looking for a job, remember if you don’t have a portfolio, then make something until the time you have to apply. Mention this – so they can see your potential.

As long as you don’t ask for race, colour and other discrimination things – you will hire based on talent. So the group of people will be with the least possible bias.

Role Of Employer

Now that the relationship between employer and employee is set up, hiring is done. Things now have to change.

The bureaucracy element can’t sustain in the remote work. You have to define what is expected and deliver. Unless your employee is part of a support group, they shouldn’t be forced to be in a specific time frame.

Here are some broad guidelines:

  • Clear expectation from an employee – for example, completing an app within 3 months. With periodic updates.
  • Clear bonus and other promotion mechanisms. The world is opening to remote work. People would flock to better companies.
  • No focus on time unless the employee is on support. Because everyone works better in a different scenario.
  • Once you go this route, you realize many meetings aren’t required. Maybe do 1 every month, if necessary
  • Primary communication over email or a company custom software or one of available software.
  • Allowances to set up an office at home
  • Allowances so that employees can upgrade their knowledge
  • A group get together twice a year – all paid for. Or one if it is a foreign location.

Advantages:

  • No bureaucracy means better work done
  • No control on how much time to sit means better output
  • Also, the employee can structure their life to balance family and work
  • No unnecessary pretending, no is looking over your shoulders
  • Project wise work, so there is a deadline, expectation and things get done
  • True remote work – so talent can come from everywhere. So everyone has to step up – employers and also employees

The Future Is Better

With the advent of remote work, you have to let go of many traditional roles. Fewer managers, because everyone is taking responsibility. Good pay with benefits is the norm, talents have the option, and so does the company.

Slowly, there will be many small to mid-size business which will rule the world. Because many big companies are still looking to do monopoly and things in old ways. Because they want to control. So they will lose when many studio type employers show up with real remote work.

Of course, not everything can become remote work. But the majority can and should. The future is here, it’s better, and you are leading it.