I recently had the opportunity to interview Lesley Pyle of HireMyMom.com. One thing that's clearly changed of late is our perception of remote working - and our willingness to consider remote working as a more credible option than it's been in the past. That's why I was thrilled to speak with Lesley, as she has more experience of how to become a remote worker - and convincing companies to consider the option of hiring remote workers - than just about anyone else you could find out there!
Here's the full video, a transcript of which follows underneath
Really, really excited today to be joined by Lesley Pyle.
Lesley is the Founder of HireMyMom.com
And, I think Lesley knows more about remote working, working from home than anyone else we've interviewed.
So Lesley, thanks for joining us today.
Thank you, Tony. It's my pleasure to be with you.
Great. Do you just want to tell everyone a little bit about your business just so people understand what it is you do?
Yeah, absolutely. So I'm the Founder of HireMyMom.com
It's a website that connects Moms who want to work from home with small businesses who are looking to hire virtual professionals.
Excellent, and you have been doing that yourself for 25 years now.
How has remote work changed during that time period?
Quite a bit.
So my journey began when I had my first baby.
She's 25 and at that time I had just started my first job.
I had just graduated.
Actually, not too far from Tony - from the University of Stirling with my Masters in PR and Marketing.
So my intentions were to go full speed ahead in the corporate world but having a baby rocked my world much more than I thought.
So that journey began me looking for how to work from home.
I was determined.
I was desperate.
I was passionate.
So I started freelancing way back in 1996 which led me about a year later to start my first website. Back when the Internet was pretty much brand new, at least to me; and that website was called 'home-based working Moms'
And it was kind of like a virtual chamber of commerce to bring Moms together, who worked from home, or wanted to work from home for networking support.
And so fast forward to 2007 when working from home was becoming much more widely accepted. I thought, okay, now's the time to bridge the gap.
Build a platform where small businesses can find these Moms, who are eager to work from home, who usually have lots of skills that they want to use.
But they don't want to go back to a full time job.
So that's when HireMyMom was born.
About, let's say...
What's that, 13, 14 years ago?
And so is the ease with which people can find that type of work now, you know, one of the big changes that you would highlight.
So like I said, there's a lot of moms that are looking for work, and there are a lot of small businesses that need the talent.
And so just bringing those two audiences together has been, I think, a match made in heaven for a lot of people.
Yeah, and if we think about small businesses, why do you think remote teams - being able to engage people in this way - is so important to small businesses?
Yeah, I think one of the main benefits is the candidates are more specialised.
So no longer do you have to hire just an assistant to do, let's say all of your admin, your social media, maybe even light bookkeeping.
Instead now, because remote work is so popular.
And so many people want to do it that you can hire a social media expert to do your social media.
You could even hire a YouTube expert to do YouTube only.
You can have an administrative rock star to do all your admin, an accountant, and it doesn't mean that you have to hire them for 20 hours a week.
Some of these jobs that are posted maybe needs someone for 5 hours a week, but that same person will then work for 4 or 5 people to make up the amount of hours that they want to work.
So it's enabling people to find their niche to become very specialised and very good at what they do.
Which is a huge benefit for small businesses that don't have a budget to hire full-time employees or even part-time employees that are going to work a ton of hours.
Businesses are also finding that their money goes further because a lot of times people who work from home are willing to work for a little bit less than a traditional job because the benefits are so great, especially for Moms.
I'll speak because so many of them want the freedom and flexibility to work their own schedule that they'll take a lesser pay to have that freedom and flexibility.
And then if you look at the studies that show that productivity goes up when people work from home; and it also helps retain talent because people are more willing to stay with a job or an assignment as long as they're getting that opportunity to work from home.
So lots of benefits all the way around.
I've been running businesses where we have remote work from home teams for 20 years.
So I can completely relate to all those points.
Absolutely resonates with me.
When we think about the different types of sites there are out there Lesley for freelancers, people who want to work in this kind of way.
What do you think of some of the main differences between the large, the best-known sites, if you like, and some of the niche ones, like your own website?
Yeah. I'll tell you one of the differences that was brought to my attention a couple of months ago was a person that posted a job with us.
And she said I was so glad to find your site because I just posted this job on Indeed, and I had 900 applicants in less than 24 hours, and I was drowning.
I couldn't handle it. Someone told me about your site, another Mom and I posted it and I had 25 solid resumes. Which was much easier for her to go through, and she said that the quality of applicants was higher.
She said, I think one of the reasons for that is because there is a small fee to join HireMyMom, some of these other job sites anyone can join and that person might apply to 50 jobs just because it's free. Whereas on our side we pay a little fee upfront, and you're probably not going to want to invest that money unless you feel like you're going to get a job. So I think we attract higher level candidates for that reason, more serious job seekers who are willing to pay upfront.
And on the flip side, those same job seekers like that model because they're not paying a commission back to the website. I know a lot of these freelance job sites, you don't pay anything upfront, but then you're paying a commission to the website for as long as you're working for those people that you got from the website.
So if you're making $1000, $100 to $200 might be going back to the website each time.
So it's more beneficial for those job seekers to join a smaller niche site for that.
And then we also have some that are looking specifically for either customer service, or something where they need to understand the English language on a deeper level.
And so sometimes they're looking for that native English speaker in a more niche site where they can find that. And then lastly, I would say you're less likely to encounter scams.
I know on our website we take anything remotely negative.
We have a process for all of our job posts to weed out the scams.
As best we can, and the same for our job seekers.
If we find anything, that's negative about the jobs then we try to keep our platform as clean in that way as we can.
And the website, HireMyMom.com
Why do you think Mums, Moms in particular make such good remote workers?
Or indeed, is that not the case?
Yeah, I do, because I've seen how you know valuable like I said before that freedom and flexibility is for Moms.
So they're willing to do I think a much better job to enable to keep that job so they go above and beyond.
Then you also have the skills that Moms are known for.
With organisation and time management and those things that are just natural when you've had kids and you've had to learn to do so many different things in a short amount of time and find how to be the most organised, to manage your time well, because let's face it, Moms juggle a lot of things.
So if you're not managing your time well, you're not going to get it all done.
So those are some of the things, the reasons I think hiring Moms are really beneficial.
And I think they're so grateful for that opportunity to be able to prioritise their family time that I think they do an exceptional job.
That's been my experience.
Lesley, it's been really interesting talking to you.
If businesses want to find out more, or candidates looking for this type of work want to find out more.
Would you point them to the website, or is there any other contact details you'd like to share?
Yes, you can find us obviously at HireMyMom.com or on LinkedIn,
Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram.
You could find us all under the name, HireMyMom.
Well, thank you so much for your time, and everyone thanks for joining.
Hope you got some real insights and inspiration there about the way you might be able to carve out a career as a remote worker.
Thanks, everyone. Thank you, Tony.
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