This is why hiring remote tech and developer talent is a great idea for your startup

By Menna Shalaby

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Remote work presents itself as the new breakthrough in the workforce, driving the future of the workplace towards more independency and virtual collaboration. Although remote work is not a new concept, its popularity started to rise in the past years according to Gallup’s state of the American workforce. The following are a few highlights on how distributed teams are changing the way people think about work.

  • Fully remote companies hire 33% faster than other organizations according to 2018 state of remote work by Owl Labs.
  • Remote employees who work remotely – at least – once a month is 24% more likely to feel happy and productive in their roles than those who don’t or can’t work remotely, according to the same report.
  • Companies that employ remote work report 25% lower employee turnover than companies that don’t.
  • According to Stack Overflow’s 2017 developer survey, 50 % of developers said that working remotely is among their top priorities when looking for a job
  • According to Buffer State of remote work 2019, 99% of their respondents said that they would like to work remotely at least some time for the rest of their careers.

Aside from that, there are many reasons why companies like Buffer, Zapier, and GitLab are choosing remote work over other options.

1- To access the world’s talents

Recruiting and hiring tech talent is one of the most common challenges employers face. According to a survey by Indeed, 86% of employers said that they find it challenging to find and hire technical talent. In the time of technology and digital communications, world’s talents have become accessible to employers around the world. Hiring remote talents is now easier and beneficial as it increases your chances of finding the right talent because you’re expanding your search pool and removing geographical barriers. There are thousands of awesome talents that can be the right fit around the world, so why not embrace that?


Challenges of hiring a tech talent

Image source: TalentLyft


2- To cut costs

One obvious benefit of hiring remote developers is reducing costs even if you still have an on-site team. This helps you limit your expenditure on infrastructure and utilities which will automatically increase your profit. According to Forbes, American Express reported annual savings of $10–15 million after allowing a flexible work option.

3- To build a diverse workplace

Incorporating different forms of diversity in your company will not just increase innovation and creativity, but it will also signify an inclusive culture. According to a study by MIT, when we work with people from different backgrounds, experiences, and cultures, we’re forced to see different points of view that make us think differently.

4- To implement a result-based system

Working with remote developers allows you to employ a result-oriented work culture. Employees' performance is evaluated based on what they bring to the table, not by their presence in the office.

“One of the secret benefits of using remote workers is that the work itself becomes the yardstick to judge someone’s performance.” — Jason Fried, Published Author of Office Not Require

5- To hire a long-term member

The last thing your startup needs is a high turnover rate. Unlike freelancing, remote work provides a stable option for startups. Once you hire the talent, they become a long-term member of your team who contributes and adds value to the company as much as their office-based counterparts.

6- To increase productivity

Will developers get as much done when they’re working outside the office? This is perhaps the most anticipated questions when it comes to hiring a remote developer. In fact, the first reason why employees choose to work remotely is increased productivity and better focus.

  • 77% of workers reported greater productivity during working remotely in a 2015 study
  • A Stanford University professor Nicholas Bloom and other scholars conducted a study in 2012-2013 on 16000 employees and found that working remotely increased productivity by 13%.


How to start?

Thankfully, there are many great companies which can take over the whole process of screening, interviewing, assessments, until picking the right talent. Most importantly, they save you all the time and hassle so you can focus on growing your business.

You will definitely have the final call when it comes to hiring the developer. Therefore, there are certain qualities that you need to look for in your remote hire. Apart from the technical skills, communication, time management, and problem-solving skills are equally important as the technical ones. Dig deep during the interview to understand the candidate’s motivation, working styles, and goals.

Here are some questions to ask during the interview:

  • What’s your experience with working remotely?
  • How would you like to communicate if there’s an urgent inquiry?
  • How do you overcome a productivity slump?
  • What are your preferred working hours?
  • How do you prioritize your tasks?


The common challenges of managing remote developers

Once you’ve decided to hire remote developers, it’s good to take a look at some common challenges in remote work and how to overcome them:


  • Lack of trust comes on top of the challenges employers face in a remote environment. When face to face interactions are absent, it’s hard to establish a sense of trust between both parties. For this reason, you need to encourage a result-driven system that will help you build trust and evaluate developers’ performance based on results.  
  • Interactions in this work environment are mostly done via email or chat messages. To overcome the challenges that come with the lack of physical interaction you need to set clear rules for communicating through your company’s structure. Choosing the right communication tools will also help you ensure a smooth flow of accurate information across different departments.


Overcoming the challenges by Building a positive culture

Remote work – just like any other work- comes with challenges. 

Creating a positive and happy culture is important for combating any challenges that may arise. Building a positive culture in remote teams is proven to reinforce the relationship between employees which automatically result in stronger and more productive teams.

Companies like Doist and Toggl who operate 100% remotely have managed to build great cultures within their teams by implementing full transparency, keeping employees engaged, and working towards a shared mission.

Hence, deciding whether you should embrace remote work depends on many factors. First and foremost, your ability to build a transparent and collaborative culture. A strong culture won’t magically happen overnight, it’s a process that involves more than just team gatherings and activities. It rather starts with fostering your company’s values into everyone’s goals and missions and creating a mindset that prioritizes asynchronous communication and trust.

To wrap it up, remote work isn’t a perk anymore. It’s a priority and a necessity for many developers and techies. It’s the ideal option for startups too. Reducing costs, eliminating commute, hiring top talents no matter where they are located and building an inclusive culture of developers are among the reasons why remote work is growing in popularity. 


About the Author: 

Menna is an online marketing manager at Remoteplatz GmbH. She is passionate about marketing, social media and recruitment. More recently she has focused on remote working trends, best-practices and collaboration tools with a particular interest in the software industry.  

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