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Remote Recruitment while Practicing Social Distancing

Coronavirus has proven itself an unprecedented threat – worldwide. The biggest hurdles of this crisis? The first – dealing with an understaffed healthcare system that is not equipped to handle the volume of patients it is currently receiving. The second? Getting a widely independent population on board with social distancing for the greater good. So, stay home and stay safe!

Most companies operating in the digital space, like SkillValue and the Pentalog Group, are fortunate enough to work from home in an effort to keep employees safe and clients happy. And, because our enterprise is a testament to the benefits of remote work, we’d like to do our part to help companies with remote recruitment during a time of uncertainty.

Since last week, SkillValue has set up a fully remote recruitment process for all ongoing collaborations. And together with our clients we already have proof that remote recruitment works.

The result: In only one week, 5 employment offers have been made after a 100% remote recruitment process. All these clients felt comfortable enough to make a data-driven decision. This process has even allowed 2 of our clients to hire – a Senior Java Developer and a Senior System Administrator.

Despite its bad rap, multiple studies confirm that working from home actually enhances productivity. Remote workers can take advantage of fewer interruptions, less office distractions, the subtracted stress of a tedious commute, minimal office politics and last but not least – a super lax dress code!

With that said and in the context of the current situation – let’s ask ourselves how many times we’ve worked harder to occupy more of our mental real estate with something other than worry?

Humankind’s daily scope of activity has taken a complete 180 in just a few short weeks as we deal with a global crisis our generation has never experienced. And, lately I’ve come across a fair share of articles on how companies can help their teams be well and perform well – all while practicing social distancing.

With clients looking to maintain operations and those who need to recruit talent – tech companies are faced with learning “digital decision-making”. This article is aimed at helping these companies hire the right people – using a 100% remote recruitment process.

So, how do you hold an online interview and make a final hiring decision – based on virtual interaction only?

While it can be challenging to replicate the feeling of a face-to-face interview, here are some tips to help you conduct remote recruitment while practicing social distancing.

1. Pick the Perfect Working Spot

While homes are normally our primary places of comfort and coziness, remote interviews will call for at least a makeshift office space. Choose a quiet space with natural lighting if you can (preferably by a window) and make sure to have adequate desk space – a dining room or kitchen table is ideal.

2. Mandatory and “nice to have” skills

Prepare a list of mandatory and “nice to have”skills for the position you’re interviewing for ahead of time. Prepare all the questions you need answeres in order to be able to make a sound hiring decision. You can conduct a panel semi-structured interview and prepare behavioral or situational questions for each candidate. The interview might take longer than usual – but in the end, you’ll be equipped with more than enough information to bring the right person on board.

3. Use a Scoring System

You can group the skills you’re looking for into categories such as problem-solving, collaboration and teamwork, adaptability, response to failure, technical knowledge, etc. A data-driven method such as scoring can help you remain objective and avoid unconscious bias.

4. Technical Tests

Another way to avoid unconscious bias when performing remote recruitment is to test candidates on the hard skills you need. At SkillValue, our IT testing platform offers companies like yours 600+ tests on various technical topics and technologies. If you need help or have any questions about technical testing, contact us to have one of our team members give you access to our platform to assess your candidates for free.

5. Plan a Second Interview

If you still have doubts about a candidate, ask for a second interview and have a colleague present (digitally!) to give you a second opinion. Write down your main concerns or unanswered questions and think about other ways to get the answers you need.

6. Rescore the “Must-Have” Skills

Take a look at your must-have list and rescore it after the interview. Ask your colleague to the same. Then, revisit it 24-48 hours after that to see if you’re still on the same page with your previous scoring as well as your colleagues’.

7. Have Empathy

Above all, take into consideration that we’re all going through a rough-time with the current crisis – and some are taking it harder than others. A little bit of compassion and kindness can go a long way in understanding where a candidate is coming from and where they see themselves going in their potential new role as your colleague.
If your candidate scores an 85% or more, chances are you may have found your next colleague!

If you need help in defining “must-have” skills for the position you’re interviewing for, scoring, building a questionnaire to assess soft skills or would like free access to our IT testing platform, feel free to send me an email at or message me on LinkedIn!

Also, feel free to email or message me on LinkedIn with your thoughts and opinions on remote recruitment while practicing social distancing. It’s quite the challenge – but working together, we can collectively find solutions that work for us all.


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