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HR Management: What Traits to Look for in Remote Employees

Jun 09, 2021
HR Management: What Traits to Look for in Remote Employees
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As technology has evolved, remote work has become a new normal for many individuals. With recent technological advances, people can now work from anywhere in the world. Right now, there is an increasing number of companies that rely on remote workers. This year, 55% of businesses globally already offer remote positions, and 18% of the workforce telecommutes on a full-time basis. There’s really no denying how much working remotely has been booming, and right now, there’s no stopping it. 

For many people, remote work is a lifesaver, and they have been delighted with this kind of work setting. However, it is not all roses. There are also plenty of things you need to know before your company/business decides on hiring people remotely. What are its advantages? How do you deal with the hiring process? Ultimately, what should you look for in a remote employee? Read on, and we’ll help you get answers to those questions.

Traits to Look For In A Remote Employee

It’s not as easy as it sounds to find a great remote worker. If you are on the hunt for someone to work with you long-term, you have to know what to look for. Your remote worker will be an essential asset to your company, and you should make sure they are a good fit. Here are some of the best qualities of a great remote worker that you should look for:


One of the most difficult challenges in working remotely is constant communication. Make sure you look for a responsive candidate that is willing to stay connected with you and their future team, constantly keeping everyone in the loop. This will ensure that you are all on the same page and are working towards the same goal.

Self-Motivated and Disciplined

This is a fundamental trait when working remotely, as nobody is physical with them to make sure they’re doing their tasks and are motivated at all times. The best remote workers know how to move forward even without somebody looking over their shoulder. It’s also a great option to hire someone who already has experience working remotely so that they already know what to expect.

Has Great Organizational Habits

In line with being self-motivated and disciplined, great remote employees should have excellent time management and organizational abilities as well. After all, how their whole day will go all depends on them. So, look for someone who knows how to manage their schedule and keeps a detailed list of their daily tasks. They should also have great attention to detail and be able to meet deadlines.


On top of their strong communication skills, a great remote worker should also know how to collaborate with their remote team. They know what their fellow team members are working on, and they’ll make an effort to complement it.


You’ll indeed be flooded with tons of applications, and plenty of them will put little to no effort into their application. A lot of them only apply for a remote job because they like the idea of working at home. Definitely a bad sign, isn’t it? What you want is the exact opposite of that — someone who is truly excited to be a part of what you want to achieve and will work hard to help you with it.


Remote employees wouldn’t have access to office amenities. This means they have to find their own way to be able to work effectively in their environment. On top of that, they would also be great problem solvers. They make an effort to look for resources that will help them resolve the issues they might encounter.

Adaptable and Flexible

A remote worker’s ability and willingness to adjust are vital to building an excellent relationship with their clients and teammates. There are instances when you need them for a meeting at a time that may be weird for them or maybe be unable to respond right away to their questions about work. A great remote employee will still be able to put their best foot forward despite those kinds of circumstances.

Confident and Reliable in Making Decisions

People who are constantly second-guessing themselves are absolutely not fit to be a remote worker. It would help if you had someone who can make thought-out and informed decisions about their work. Choose someone you’d be able to rely on to do the right thing and get the job done.

Business Advantages of Hiring Remote Employees

Still undecided whether hiring remote employees is for you? We’ve listed some of the business advantages of a remote work setting:

  1. Reduced office costs. If you decide on hiring remote workers, you won’t have to spend money on leasing office space and extra utility expenses.

  2. Limitless candidates. Deciding on a remote work setting also means having access to an entire world of possible employees.

  3. Increased Productivity. According to FlexJobs' survey, 95% of their respondents have higher or the same productivity when working from home, and 51% of their respondents report being more productive when working remotely.

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Quick Tips on Hiring Remote Employees

Finally, here are some quick tips that can help you through your remote hiring process:


  • Examine their resume well. A single resume can already tell you a lot about your candidate, so make sure to take a good look at it. Make sure their resumes are well-written. If you want a guide of what an excellent resume looks like, check out these executive resume samples.

  • Provide questions. Because you now have applicants from all over the world, you will need an efficient way to choose the ones worth interviewing. One way to filter them out is to make them answer a few questions and see if they meet your baseline criteria.

  • Take advantage of video calling. Hiring someone remotely means you won’t be able to sit with them in the same room during the interviewing process. The next best option you have is a face-to-face video job interview where you can hear how they speak and pick up the non-verbal cues they express while they answer your questions.

  • Get the candidate’s future team involved in the interview. After all, they are the ones who will collaborate and communicate with each other to achieve the company goals.

  • Take note of not only their professional background but also their work ethics. Do you think this candidate is really interested in what the company does? Do you think they’ll be able to handle the work well?  Do they already have remote work experience? Ask questions that will make the perfect candidate stand out.

Final Thoughts

Nobody is perfect. It’s cliche but it is true. Looking for the best remote employee is definitely not an easy feat. It needs a lot of time and effort. The traits we’ve discussed are just a guide and are only supposed to help you know what qualities you should look for in a remote employee. In reality, you won’t be able to hire someone with all of those traits for every role you need to fill. The important thing is you look for someone that is best suited for each role, be supportive of them, and put an extra measure of patience and training. This way, you’ll be able to help your remote workers move towards success.


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About Author: Mindy Allen is a freelance writer who specializes in website content, blogs, email copywriting, and social media content. She was a former English teacher before she decided to start working remotely. She has been a remote employee for over two years and loves giving tips on remote work settings.


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