An essential part of any recruitment process is creating a well-written job description. The goal is to find words that would evoke interest among candidates and leave no room for misunderstanding.
Job van der Voort, CEO of Remote.com, said that the biggest challenge is to write a clear job description. When you hire remotely, you will receive many more applicants. If you don’t have a clear job description, you will spend a lot of time on irrelevant candidates. This costs you time and negatively impacts your employer brand. Make sure to spend enough time on your job description to avoid this.
A clearly written job description can help your recruiting and retention strategies by helping you attract and keep the best talent.
When creating a job description for remote employees, recruiters should consider specific factors that are critical for remote positions that should be in line with your hiring strategy.
- What time zones are suitable for the role?
- What is the compensation strategy, does it depend on the location?
- Think about specific job titles for roles in other countries
- Clarify what you mean by remote work (fully online, flexible remote work, etc.)
In collaboration with IT-recruiting agency MatcHR we have created a guide on how to write a job description for remote positions.
Types of remote work
There are different types of remote models, depending on your company’s needs, the type of business you run and the company’s values. Some companies have a traditional office but have remote work policies that allow employees to choose to partially or fully work remotely. Other companies have fully distributed teams.
In this model, companies accept that some workers will work remotely for a short period of time, but they still expect people to spend the majority of their time in the office. This approach gives employees some flexibility and demonstrates trust from the company’s side.
This option is great for companies that are just starting to hire remotely, or for large enterprises where it is difficult to implement a completely remote structure. This approach significantly expands the candidate pipeline, improves diversity, and reduces expenses when hiring employees beyond metropolitan areas.
All Remote Within One Time Zone
The all remote within one time zone option is great for companies that require core team working hours. A time overlap is usually allowed, but with a period of the employees’ availability. Working in a single time zone allows for easier real-time communication among colleagues.
All Remote Within Different Time Zones
This option is ideal for companies that can work effectively with asynchronous teams. Fully remote companies that are working across different time zones must have strong planning, accuracy, and consistency in their documentation. Secondly, it requires an experienced and autonomous workforce that is measured on output and is afforded a high level of trust. These types of companies can hire globally.
Job description for remote roles includes important aspects that are different from the usual “in-house” roles. Let’s go through them step-by-step.
State the remote flexibility
There’s a huge difference between fully remote work and hybrid-remote. Are you remote-first or remote-friendly? If you are fully remote, share details about how communication between teams is built and where employees are located. Same with flexible working hours, state it clearly if employees will have to visit the office on certain days. In your job description, make sure to set expectations regarding schedules, time commitments, and communication frequency. Based on the difference in time zones you may expect employees to work in unusual working hours or in contrast you allow asynchronous communication within your teams.
Set clear expectations regarding schedules, time commitments, and communication frequency. Based on the difference in time zones you may expect employees to work in unusual working hours or in contrast you allow asynchronous communication within your teams.
Use specific keywords that indicate remote status of work
if you want to attract candidates who are looking for a remote position, make sure to add specific words in the job title and job description, like:
- Further relocation
- Work from home
- Online work
Specify, if “remote” means 100% remote or 50%, etc. Does working from home mean that an employee should visit the office from time to time or on certain days?
Also, define the list of job titles that could fit your open position in your selected location/country. For example, it could be “marketing manager”, “marketing specialist” or “software engineer”, “software architect” etc
Attract employees with perks and benefits
If you want to attract remote talent to your roles, you need to show your commitment to them as equal team members. State benefits like healthcare for employees and contractors if you offer it. Remote workers also like to see if you will provide them with hardware and a home office or co-working allowance. Annual gatherings, vacation days, as well as meetups and conferences for personal or professional development, are in the compensation package.
Examples of perks that you could mention:
- Health insurance
- Annual additional benefits for reaching KPI goals
- Paid time off (how many days)
- A new laptop or other equipment/software
- Support for self-education
- Travel/hotel expenses
Explain your company values, diversity in your teams, career opportunities.
What values drive your team? Singularity in company culture is harder for distributed teams, especially those that work asynchronously. Mention traditions, company vision, everything that you are proud of.
Always use inclusive language. Avoid job descriptions that are too masculine, highlight that you are open to any gender and nationality. Try the Texio tool to escape diversity bias in your wording when writing a job description.
Moreover, describe the way of working, how many meetings does your team normally have, or what environment is used for communication.
Clarify the recruiting and onboarding processes
What stages should a candidate expect after the application? How do you onboard remote employees? Will they have to visit the office in their first weeks or not? Remote is still a new work model and many candidates can barely imagine what to expect from the process of recruitment.
Mention the essential language knowledge and technologies
As soon as your company has distributed teams, specify what is the main language for internal communication.
Also, explain the desired skills that a candidate should have regarding the tools you use to collaborate. It will make it easier for a candidate to understand the nature of remote work within the company.
We recommend creating an intake form for any new role that hiring managers need to fill. Outline must-have and nice-to-have skills for candidates, understand why this particular role could be of interest to a candidate, and outline the primary and secondary benefits, etc. Create a unified vacancy text to clearly describe what your company does, why joining the team would be of interest to a candidate, and clearly define who you are looking for to fill this role.