Remote working has gained momentum in the modern world, particularly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has compelled many organizations to adopt this model. Remarkably, remote working has proven to be a triumph, with some companies experiencing an upsurge in productivity. This has quashed prior skepticism about the feasibility of remote working, revealing that these challenges can be overcome to realise its benefits.
Whether you are an experienced remote team manager or just starting to explore the idea of hiring a remote programmer, it is crucial to have a well-planned onboarding process. This process should have established guidelines and regulations to avoid potential challenges later on.
To learn more about managing remote teams, check out our blog on using information to manage remote teams.
Wondering how to efficiently onboard a remote programmer? We’ve got you covered. Here are some useful tips:
Resolve Your Issues
Before hiring a remote worker, it’s essential to have a well-crafted plan and complete all the necessary documentation. Apart from the usual paperwork required by new employees, certain additional factors should be taken into account.
- Collaborating with an individual living and operating in a different country.
- Ensuring the health and well-being of remote workers
- Worries regarding the security of computer systems
- Provision of home office resources such as equipment and/or allowances
- Policies for telecommuting
- Guidelines for internal and external communications
To prevent “out of sight, out of mind” mentality from affecting productivity, it is crucial to take appropriate measures. Before hiring a remote programmer, it’s important to discuss security-related concerns with your IT department to avoid any issues that may hinder their access to company systems.
Set Expectations and Fulfill Them
To manage expectations for a remote team member, it’s crucial to establish and follow clear rules and guidelines for remote work and communication. Important factors to consider while setting these rules and guidelines include:
- Should employees maintain the company’s established standard office hours, or do they have the flexibility to set their own schedules?
- Is telecommuting permissible, or is the employee expected to be available online during specific hours?
- Instead of relying on imprecise methods to measure productivity when determining success, it’s advisable to evaluate actual results. This helps in gaining a more accurate understanding of the effectiveness of our efforts.
When onboarding a new team member, it’s crucial to take time to assess if any modifications are required. Language barriers can pose challenges, particularly if the employee is not a native speaker of the predominant language used in the organisation. To overcome this, maintaining a glossary of unusual words and phrases can be helpful. Additionally, encouraging the team to use simple language helps guarantee effective communication.
Providing non-native speakers with access to meeting materials in advance is advantageous. To achieve this, it’s crucial to encourage team members to send agendas and reports at least 24 hours before any scheduled meetings. This not only helps attendees to be well-prepared but also enables them to make the most of the meeting.
New hire onboarding mostly involves initial meetings with HR, paperwork completion, orientation, meet-and-greets with personnel, and facility tours. All of these tasks can be effectively executed remotely, using video conferencing apps like Zoom. This allows all parties to complete standard onboarding procedures successfully, even while being in different locations.
When onboarding employees from various cultural backgrounds, it’s vital to start by building team camaraderie. Despite being progressive, it’s natural to feel less comfortable around people who are perceived as different from us. As an employer, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your in-house team sees the remote worker as an equal member of the team. It’s important to emphasize that the person is a full-time employee and not a freelancer or contractor.
The next stage of the onboarding process involves training and/or shadowing, which can be conducted remotely or in-person, based on the situation. Using tools like World Time Buddy can make scheduling easier by synchronizing various time zones, but team members may need to be flexible to make this possible.
To welcome a new hire to the team, taking them out for a drink at the end of their first week or around lunchtime is an excellent idea. It offers an excellent opportunity to socialize outside of the workplace and for the team to bond. Hence, it may be worthwhile considering the same welcoming approach for remote workers.
At the inception of each meeting, it’s essential to allocate time for informal conversations. However, when commemorating substantial accomplishments, it’s appropriate to hold a virtual celebration. This presents an opportunity to have fun and mark the occasion suitably, based on the team’s preference. For instance, you can order pizza, encourage everyone to wear Hawaiian shirts while mixing drinks, or spend time together playing Fortnite.
Start With Them
The individual assigned for shadowing or training should provide a full introduction to the fundamentals, such as task management, communication protocols, the version control system in use, and the location of the #watercooler channel, which is where the funniest cat memes are shared. After that, they should be assigned relevant tasks to keep them occupied.
Feeling unsure when hiring a remote developer for the first time is a natural reaction, but rest assured, you’ve made the right choice. It’s crucial to give them the independence to perform the duties they were hired for.
To enable a new programmer to acquaint themselves with the organization, it’s regular practice to assign them a distinct and limited task. This serves as a practical exercise for them to get acquainted with version control software, be familiar with coding standards, and assess their problem-solving abilities in real time. It’s also an excellent method to detect areas where they require further training.
To guarantee that all members of a remote team are informed and updated with developments, it’s crucial to have a well-defined communication policy that outlines the channels to be used for specific purposes. This is especially significant in ensuring that urgent requests for assistance are not missed out. This approach ensures that all relevant information is communicated efficiently and promptly.
Daily stand-ups are a crucial component of the Agile Development Methodology. If your team isn’t already participating in this practice, it’s highly recommended to begin. During these sessions, team members present their progress updates, highlight any roadblocks they’ve encountered, and share their daily plans. This serves many benefits, including keeping everyone on the same page, building camaraderie, and allowing members to learn from one another and assist each other.
As a general guideline, it’s crucial to be considerate of how often you interrupt a remote programmer while they are working. Such interruptions may halt their progress on their tasks. Hence, it’s recommended to use asynchronous communication technologies that allow developers to respond at their convenience.
Crucial Factors for Remote Developer Recruitment Success
Finding the ideal candidate is an essential component of a successful onboarding process. Although many people are now discovering remote work, not everyone is suited for it, despite the fact that up to 90% of employees desire to work from home, even if it’s only part-time. We can assist you in determining whether the remote programmer you’re considering is capable of meeting the job requirements.
At Works, we take great care in screening all candidates for their technical skills, remote work capabilities, and cultural fit to our company. Compared to other recruiting methods, our process is swift, as we only consider the most qualified individuals for each role. If you require a remote programmer, we are happy to offer assistance. Get in touch with us today to discuss this further.