While not all industries have embraced remote life completely, off-site work has become a growing opportunity for a lot of companies. In fact, according to Global Workplace Analytics, telecommuting has grown by 115% since 2005 with 80 – 90% of those surveyed saying they’d like to telework at least part of the week. In an age where targeted digital content, SEO optimization, and quality online customer service has become key to having a successful business, it’s no surprise that businesses are expanding their job applicant pool to include savvy telecommuters and off-site staff. If your company is considering opening your doors to this new type of employee, take the time to consider these three employment practices.
- Pre-Employment Screening
By now you’re already familiar with the necessities within your employment screening (think: social security number trace, and nationwide and county-level criminal searches), but what about accessibility? Keep in mind that if you’re hiring a remote employee who lives very far from your headquarters or offices, you’re going to have to cater your vetting process to the position’s distance. For example, if you require all your employees to be drug tested, then you’ll want to make sure your pre-employment screening provider has drug testing facilities in the potential employee’s area. Likewise, if your applicant is from (or resides in) another country, you might have to seek out a specialized background report.
- Data Security
Whether the off-site job position requires a high level of security or not, you’ll want to create some data security standards for your remote staff. Easy things like not leaving your laptop or company phone unattended in public, keeping sensitive files locked away in a secure at-home office or file cabinet, and routinely changing all logins and passwords can be stressed in your off-site policy. That being said, if the position requires additional security, you should include that in your policy.
- Your Remote Guidelines
Beyond the actual job expectations, you’ll want to establish some remote guidelines. This allows both your company and the new hire to be on the same page as to what is and isn’t allowed. Things like personal cellphone use, lunch and break hours (if you decide to set these), and work use outside the home are good things to start off with.
If you decide to join the overwhelming amount of businesses offering a more flexible work arrangement (The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans reports that it’s at 94%), keep these three employment practices in mind. Establishing your pre-employment screening capabilities, the position’s data security requirements, and your company’s remote guidelines ahead of time can save you a huge headache down the line.
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