Hubstaff has helped me find talented content writers that I can work with on my own terms. As I need more remote freelancers it will be the first place I look.
We live in an ultra-competitive world where every business decision can be the difference between success and failure. With that in mind, business owners across the world are looking for talented individuals to help them improve their operations, plug skill gaps in their workplace, and help them gain an edge over the competition.
Many small and medium size business owners started their companies out of a desire to share what they love with the world, not out of a need to use the skills they learnt doing an MBA. This means that many small and medium size business owners find themselves to be lacking the specialised skills needed to run rapidly growing organisations and thrive in highly competitive marketplaces.
Similarly, businesses often find that the skills they need to help them run their business aren’t supplied by the people in their local area - and this can often lead to companies going without crucial staff.
Thankfully, developments in technology mean that independent business owners and small organisations are able to hire specialised and knowledgeable experts from all-over the world to help them run their operations, devise new strategies, manage projects, and prepare accounts. Tools like Skype, Slack, Dropbox and others, make it easy for teams to collaborate on projects regardless of their physical location. This means that small-medium sized businesses can take full advantage of the huge number of talented business consultants from across the globe, and can prepare their business for future success with the right staff.
Being able to hire a Business Strategy Developer from Barcelona, when your company’s headquarters are in Boston, or a Quickbooks expert from Quebec, means that you can take full advantage of the vast number of incredibly talented individuals who don’t happen to be located in your town or city.
What’s more, casting your hiring net across the globe, rather than in a 20 mile radius from your office, means that you can take full advantage of the cost savings that can be offered by hiring remote employees. Hiring workers who are based in another country means that your business’s overheads can be significantly reduced as you no longer have to secure office space, contribute to insurance and 401ks, and provide amenities and perks. This means that your business has the ability to advance and grow, while at the same time invest more money into operations and development.
Beyond this, being able to hire talented legal consultants, project managers, operations specialists, and accounts experts from across the globe, means that your business can take full advantage of a whole breadth of people’s experiences and worldview; something which can help to give your business a significant competitive edge.
When interviewing remote business consultants, especially if you are not a business specialist yourself, look to measure each individual's previous job performance. Ask them specific questions about what they achieved in their past roles, what affect they had on the area they were hired to improve, and whether or not they met their targets or exceeded expectations.
Beyond this, ask your candidates about their failures, and where they feel they could improve. The best remote workers are self-critical and highly self-aware; both of these qualities are necessary to ensure consistently good work, as virtual employees need to be able to manage their work without constant input from managers and colleagues.
If you are still unsure of which areas to target questions to, there are many comprehensive guides that can help you to formulate questions to ask candidates during the interview process.
Knowing which remote business consultant to hire is crucial to making sure that your new virtual employee contributes positively to your business. To make sure you hire for the right role, spend some time evaluating your business to find out what your organisation’s strengths and weaknesses are, and then look to hire someone to negate those areas.
Alternatively, if you are hiring someone to make up for the skills you lack personally, spend some time thinking about the areas of running your business that you dislike or find difficult; you may find that you struggle managing your company’s accounts and tax returns, in which case a remote accountant would be able to relieve this from you. Similarly, if you find yourself becoming increasingly detached from the day-to-day running of your business, it may be pertinent to hire a business operations consultant to handle the intricacies of daily events.
Testing which candidate is the right hire for your business is crucial to making sure that your remote worker matches your company’s culture and integrates well with the rest of your team. To test whether your candidates would be a good fit, ask them about how they integrated with their previous team, and try to discover whether they were able to work collaboratively to solve problems.
One of the primary roles of a business consultant is to work with your other employees to solve the problems that your business faces. If your remote hire doesn’t work well in teams, and isn’t able to lead groups of your employees, then you will face challenges down the road that prevent your business from growing.
If you are still unsure about whether your candidate would be a good fit for your business, there are many guides and helpful articles that can help you to decide.
Managing remote employees is becoming increasingly easy as technology advances. Tools like Slack, Skype, Basecamp, and Asana, make it easy for you to communicate with and delegate tasks to employees around the world. Beyond this, make sure to keep clear channels of communication open at all times, and to convey projects in simple and easy to understand terms, and make it clear that your remote employees can contact you at any time for further input or help.
If you are looking to gain an in-depth understanding of what your remote business consultant does on a daily basis, look to use time tracking software like Hubstaff that can help you to track exactly what your hire does each hour. Remote employee time tracking software can help you to monitor what apps and websites your worker uses and visits each day, help you to understand your employee’s levels of activity, and help you to increase your organisation’s efficiency (by helping you to understand which tasks take the longest amount of time).