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 How to Connect with Remote Hires

How to Connect with Remote Hires

Digital communication technologies, such as Zoom, Skype, and FaceTime, have made it surprisingly easy to interview and hire people without ever meeting them face-to-face. Actually bonding with those new hires, forming a meaningful connection that brings them into your company culture, is far more challenging.

With many businesses still doing a lot of their hiring remotely, and with employee retention still a big issue, it’s important to think about ways to connect with your newest employees. Here are a few tips for your HR team to consider.

Making Meaningful Connections with Remote Hires

1) Acknowledge the situation.

Communicating with a remote hire is very different from communicating with someone you see each day in your office building. This unique situation carries some challenges, but also some opportunities.

Acknowledge the unusualness of this situation right off the bat, and let your new hire know that you’ve put processes into place to ensure their onboarding experience is a positive one. Some examples include:

  • Communicate daily so that your new hire feels like they are in the loop.
  • Create a schedule to make certain that at least one team member reaches out and communicates with the new hire on a daily basis.
  • Make sure all employee benefits information is readily accessible via an online folder or Drive.
  • Invite new hires to all relevant Zoom meetings, allowing them to feel like they are being fully included within the team dynamic.

 

2) Provide opportunities to socialize.

Another way you can help new hires feel well-connected is to provide them with opportunities to socialize with other team members… even if that just means a remote “happy hour.”

These chat sessions can be valuable, but keep a few things in mind:

  • You don’t want to overwhelm new hires with too many Zoom invites.
  • Chat sessions should be voluntary; forced socialization is usually not fruitful.
  • Make sure these sessions are scheduled during work hours whenever possible. Don’t ask people to stay logged in late just to socialize.

 

3) Keep mental health at the forefront.

It’s important that your remote hires feel well-connected, but also make sure you monitor to keep them from overdoing it. The last thing you want is for new employees to get a premature case of burnout, or to feel like your company culture has submerged them in anxiety and stress.

Some ideas:

  • Try to avoid sending any emails or texts after-hours, on weekends, or on holidays.
  • Create a workplace environment in which employees are encouraged to remove their email app from their phones over weekends or long holidays.
  • When you chat with remote hires, ask if they have created separate home workspaces, if they are doing okay with time management, if they have hobbies or passion projects, etc. Let them know that you are around to advise and support them as needed.

 

Learn More from WhiteWater Consulting

Getting to know new employees can be hard, especially when you’re doing it over Zoom. Follow these tips to help your remote hires plug in to company culture. And with any questions, reach out to WhiteWater Consulting at any time.

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