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Hiring a Remote Team? Here’s Your How-To Guide on Finding and Hiring Tech Talent

How to Hire a Remote Developer in 3 Simple Steps

Remote team collaboration has been all the rage recently — and the reasons are clear. Most companies go remote to approach maximum flexibility commuting minimum time.

Before you go for a remote team structure, you should decide for yourself whether you need it at all. Ask yourself:

  • Am I able to find the best professionals in my industry? Or shall I refer to a global talent pool?
  • How can I reduce my operation costs? Should I run a physical office or a virtual one?
  • How can I boost my developers’ productivity? Shall I make the corporate culture more flexible?

If you decide to reach out to a global talent market, establish a virtual office, and build a flexible corporate culture — then you are all ready to hiring remotely. Read on — this article will guide you through each step of the hiring process.

Step 1. Consider Different Hiring Options

Before you dive into headhunting, you should catch up with your existing team members and partners, discuss the ongoing and future project goals, consider budgeting constraints, dig into both short-term and long-term goals. This will help you come up with the amount of work that needs to be done by a remote team daily. This step is essential, as building the right team and delegating the tasks properly are keys to successful startup management.

Headway — Unsplash

You should decide which channels for remote teams hiring to go for. Though most companies delegate this assignment to an HR team, there are currently tons of hiring channels and communication tools that may come in handy for efficient remote teams management. Choose the method that works well for you, handpick the best experts available on the market, and glue them all together into one team. Below find the top ways to find a good fit.

1. Ask for a referral

Did you know that usually, employees in the IT sector switch jobs once in 3-4 years? For this reason, asking your partners or colleagues for a referral is worth a try.

2. Attend tech conferences

Looking for a Python/Java or PHP developer? Then you should attend and monitor events like PyCon, Framework days, or Java Day.

Networking at various hackathons, conferences and tech events will help you establish a lot of strategic partnerships, which may turn out to be very beneficial, especially in the long run.

3. Hire remote developers online

Platforms like Upwork, TopTal, YouTeam, and Pilot are currently the best places to hire remote software developers.

  • TopTal. It is known to be the marketplace with a meticulous pre-screening system, which means that only top developers can get there.
  • Upwork. This platform also has the record-breaking amount of tech talents, so you can find many individual employees there.
  • YouTeam. While most of its engineers aren’t full-time freelancers, YouTeam serves as a large talent marketplace, where you can hire remote software developers from pre-screened vetted shops or IT consulting firms.
  • Pilot. This platform can be a great place to hire remote developers and designers. It uses a unique 7-step approach for vetting global talents, so there’s no need to review each candidate twice.

4. Hire dedicated teams online

YouTeam works the same way as Upwork and TopTal, with the only difference in a hiring approach.

Randy Fath — Unsplash

Our platform allows you to work with a whole team of developers, including Project Manager and/or Product Owner, Back end and Front end developers as well as UX/UI Designers and QA specialists. Important to mention, these specialists have a contract with an existing development firm. This allows you to go through the on-boarding stage much easier and hire not only individual experts but also the processes they built together as one team.

There’s no need to handle all financial, administrative and legal issues — they are already taken care of by a development agency you’re contracting with. Such collaboration model ensures that your remote employees work on your product alone and are fully dedicated to the process.

Step 2. Build a Consistent Interview Process

1. Set goals & priorities

Make sure you get clear of what exactly you need distributed teams for. Logically, you should make a list of which experts you need to build a professional remote team from scratch. This is the basis your HR department or third-party marketplace will rely on to seek for the perfect candidates. Once you set clear requirements & expectations, you are all set up to make a new hire.

One of the biggest challenges in hiring remote workers is the screening process itself. Since people who are supposed to work remotely may be incapable of visiting your office, your abilities to interview are limited extremely. You won’t be able to see the applicant’s body language or analyze the slight changes in their tone of voice. Still, there is a sequence you can follow to determine whether the candidate is a good fit. Find everything you’ll need to do below.

2. First screen

Compared to all other online interview techniques, live video calls seem to be the most effective. They can give you the look and feel of the person’s values. Culture and values fit is key to successful remote team management.

When someone applies for a role at your company and seems to be an extremely strong match, it doesn’t mean that this person is a good fit as a remote worker. In most cases, a 30-minute call with the HR manager or team lead can help you understand how this candidate can add value to your existing team.

John Doyle — Unsplash

In addition to it, the first chat is what shines a light on the candidate’s values. If people apply for a remote work position, they should be helpful, dedicated, and result-oriented. They also should be great at working and managing their priorities independently. In addition to it, they should be profound in writing. Looking for a remote developer with such qualities will save you much time and hassle. Therefore, you will be able to find a good fit without needing a pesky recruiter

3. Technical screen

If you are looking for a technical role, scheduling a tech interview is a must. Making a short (2-4 hours) exam will help you to evaluate the depth of a candidate’s technical knowledge. Once the exam is passed, you may assign a trial project to a candidate. This will make it easier for you to test an applicant on their potential output (ex. quality of the code, analytical skills, logical thinking, etc.)

For non-technical positions, you may find the hiring process to be more complex, especially if you do the selection remotely. If you are looking for a manager for your distributed team, it is essential to understand the competencies of a person. In addition to that, you’ll have to make sure that a candidate has a great sense of independence, collaboration, and brilliant communication skills.

4. Final interview

In case both interviews were successful and a candidate gets a green light to move forward, the next step is a final interview. It should cover the candidate’s salary expectations, working schedule, and all the benefits that come along with working at your company.

Make sure you leave an opportunity for them to ask any questions that may be lingering. Also, don’t forget to ask final questions yourself, as you need to make sure that a candidate is a perfect match for your distributed team. Here are the examples of these questions:

  • Have you ever worked in a remote team before?
  • Do you have any concerns about working remotely?
  • Are you able to track your KPIs on your own?
  • How collaborative and team-oriented you are?
  • Are you able to meet tough deadlines, not rescuing the work-life balance?

If answers to these and any other questions are what you expected to hear, it’s time to make an offer your candidate will be truly excited about. For this reason, all questions related to salary should be discussed in advance.

rawpixel — Unsplash

If you are hesitant, whether a candidate is a good fit, you can ask other companies for feedback. This is a great opportunity to see how it feels to work with a person you are interviewing. No matter the position, if a candidate has made a considerable contribution to the overall team progress, you’re feeling much more confident about them and their ability to address any questions that may arise.

5. Job offer

Though all the efforts taken before are just about to pay off, it’s too early to pop a bottle of champagne. Once the final video meeting with your candidate happens, you should send over the official job offer along with a summary of the perks you offer. Then, you wait for the approval… and finally, welcome a new member to your team!

Once the signature is ready, you are all set to onboarding a new remote employee. Arranging a short trip to your office is a great opportunity to help them further break the ice and make friends with new teammates. This is also a great way to learn the company history and values.

New people are on board. Let them enjoy their stay!

Step 3. Be Aware of Traps to Avoid & Tips to Follow

1. Management

Dealing with a remote team may turn into a challenge, especially if you have no relevant management experience. For more efficient collaboration, it’s recommended to assign this role to a colleague or an outsourcing firm specialized in remote team collaboration.

If these methods are not what you are looking for, you can always control remote teams yourself. However, getting used to this management style might take some time. Even so, tons of communication, management, and online collaboration tools are out there. They will come in handy to boost your management efficiency as well as increase overall team productivity.

2. Communication

Time difference and language barrier are the two most common problems when it comes to remote teams communication. Though English remains the most popular language for the IT industry, the majority of remote team members are not native speakers.

Kobu Agency — Unsplash

For this reason, it is essential to outsource a manager who will supervise your distributed team abroad. This will resolve all concerns you may have as well as prevent any future problems from happening.

3. Trust

All fears of teams working remotely boil down to the questions of mutual trust. How you as a manager can be sure that an hour paid is an hour worked if you have no chance to meet your distributed teams regularly? Unfortunately, there’s no optimal way to answer this.

If a question of trust is among the trickiest for you, you may rely on the use of an outsourced marketplace that may handle all management problems itself.

Final tips

No matter the duration and specifics of the project, choosing the right remote software development team may be overwhelming, especially for the first time. However, if you know how to organize the hiring process properly, you can find a reliable software development partner that would contribute to your project’s success in the long run. Here are some final tips:

  • Build a collaborative working environment with an ability to monitor team performance on the fly
  • Schedule a set of review sessions with every individual member of your distributed team
  • Monitor both the overall performance of the team and the individual performance of each member
  • Make sure your team has a clear understanding of your strategy and knows how to make it work
  • Keep both short-term and long-term goals clear and properly prioritized

Hopefully, you’ll find the recommendations listed above useful and will be happy about working with distributed teams. However, you should always remember that hiring and working with remote teams is quite a challenge. If you struggle to find a perfect match for your development team — don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance.

YouTeam will always be there for you whenever you search for tech talent.

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Mary Atamaniuk

Mary Atamaniuk is a digital content strategist at YouTeam — a curated b2b tech talent marketplace that matches businesses with dedicated development teams from pre-vetted software outsourcing agencies.

Mary's areas of interest include digital marketing, tech entrepreneurship, and influencer blogging.

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