You are hiring! It isn’t easy to find qualified talent, so landing the perfect candidate is reason to celebrate. There is only one small obstacle: They live in San Francisco, while your headquarters are in New York City. The answer that may seem obvious — relocation to New York — may not be the only solution, or even the most efficient.
Remote employees are becoming increasingly common in the digital age. According to FastCompany, a recent survey predicted that 34% of the workforce would be working remotely by 2020. Whether they work from home or across the country, remote workers play a very important role in organizations’ success.
The gig economy, also known as the peer economy or sharing economy, is a relatively new concept. As this practice grows in popularity, traditional employee training must evolve.
This economy is comprised of contract workers, remote workers and others who work on a temporary basis. As more companies shift to include this model, it is worth considering its effect on the training and onboarding processes.
Know Your Audience
There are many questions to ask when hiring remote employees.
For example, do you have security measures that would restrict remote employees? Is your project management system difficult to navigate or troubleshoot? How will the time difference between you and your employees affect workflow? It is critical to acknowledge things like access or availability of resources that onsite employees may take for granted.
Remote employees may be working at varying hours of the day, and need access to support at any time. Creating digital training with simple troubleshooting will help mitigate a need for constant person to person training.
Remote Training: Use Your Resources Wisely
Training programs are high maintenance and expensive. First, you must create the program. Second, you have to pay a salary to employees partaking in training. Don’t forget trainer salaries and purchasing digital or manual training resources.
Training employees is a long-term investment. Many programs include extensive and ongoing training with regular check-ins. These are built to foster personal development and grow employees skill-sets.
Regardless of the cost, remote workers should have equal access to training and knowledge resources. As with on-site employees, training resources should be used prudently and effectively to reach them in the best possible way.
Remote employees are may be working with multiple companies at once, so their time is a commodity. Your remote training program should be specific, yet thorough. As the contractor, you should feel confident in their ability to perform tasks. As far as everything else, cut the fluff.
Provide understanding of the company vision
In order for an individual to contribute to your organization, they must be in sync with your objectives. After all, even though they are a temporary asset, they are a part of the success of your company’s goals, visions and mission.
Airbnb is a great example of a company that states their goals to partners upfront. Capitalizing on the gig model and the power human connection — Airbnb engineered a unique form of travel accommodation. Their goal is to offer travelers a home away from home, and they make this very clear to participating hosts.
The platform encourages hosts to get acquainted with guests via message. Other suggestions include offering extras like breakfast and local recommendations. This communication of values drives Airbnb’s success.
Engage with an LMS
In-person training is sometimes impossible for contracted or remote employees, especially those far away. Virtual meetings may suffice, but a digital learning management system is an even better.
These systems make training accessible anywhere, anytime — a perfect for someone who is working part-time or remotely. The LMS you put in place should be easy and intuitive. After all, if they have technical difficulties, the process will be difficult.
For training temporary employees on digital systems, a Digital Adoption Platform (DAP) like WalkMe can come in handy. The DAP provides contextual training directly within the software. That means remote workers can receive training while they work — a win win for both sides. Even better, employees can access it on a mobile device for their on-the-go training needs.
Leverage WalkMe’s step-by-step guidance platform to make training easier than ever for your remote employees.
Plan for Future Training
The gig economy is quickly growing and it is imperative that trainers know how to handle its advancement. Understand that training these employees is a balancing act. Remote employees are contributors to your company’s eventual success. It is well worth your while to invest in a well-constructed training program. This will help employees to produce work that is meaningful and valuable for your organization.
Remote employees can be a major asset to any organization — as long as they have the right tools available at their fingertips.