9 Questions to Be Ready to Answer in a Remote Job Interview

Remote work has been on the rise for years, however the COVID-19 pandemic has lastly shoved it into the limelight.

Being pressured to ship staff dwelling to sluggish the unfold of the illness all through 2020 and into 2021 will probably trigger many employers to rethink their positions on distant work and open up extra work-from-home positions.

“Lots of people have been transitioning into working remotely solely as a result of they've the choice to work whereas touring, or whereas making an attempt to be protected from the virus,” mentioned Carolyn Cairns, advertising and marketing supervisor at Dubai- and UAE-based enterprise setup agency Creation Business Consultants.

Employers throughout all industries, whether or not they’re new to managing distant workforces or have lengthy been distant operations, wish to know the way staff will deal with working from dwelling.

So should you’re making use of for a work-from-home place, be ready to reply these distant job interview questions.

9 Questions You Might Have to Answer About Working Remotely

From eight firm leaders and hiring managers who rent and work with distant groups, listed here are some widespread distant job interview questions.

1. Have You Ever Worked Remotely?

The first query is apparent, however almost each hiring supervisor I heard from talked about it: What’s your distant work expertise?

“The primary query we all the time ask potential candidates is their consolation degree and effectiveness working remotely,” mentioned Amine Rahal, founder and CEO at Little Dragon Media, a digital advertising and marketing company.

Showcasing your expertise lets a potential employer know you may deal with working remotely.

Show them you’ve obtained this by not simply itemizing jobs the place you’ve labored remotely but in addition explaining how distant be just right for you differs from in-office work. That’ll present you perceive the talents essential to do business from home.

“It could be good to know if the applicant already has prior expertise,” mentioned Cairns, “as this can turn out to be useful, as a result of they already know the way issues will go and wouldn’t require additional coaching.”

If you’ve by no means had a distant job earlier than, contemplate any alternatives you’ve needed to work exterior the workplace, like:

Any time you traveled for a convention or coaching and needed to keep in contact along with your staff again dwelling.
Work-from-home days, even when they have been uncommon.
Days you labored from dwelling whereas caring for somebody who was sick.
Vacation days if you needed to pop on-line to deal with one thing pressing at work (hope this wasn’t the norm!).

2. Why Do You Want to Work From Home?

“It’s necessary to know why an individual opts to work remotely,” mentioned Cairns. “Their purpose would have an effect on the hours and the quantity of focus they'd be capable to give to the job.”

Most managers urged one thing comparable. They appear to be looking for pink flags — are you motivated to do business from home since you wish to keep away from oversight and slack off?

If that’s your motivation, you’re most likely on the lookout for the improper job, so greatest to duck out and discover a extra becoming profession. At the very least, don’t point out your slacker aspirations within the interview. Instead, concentrate on how a distant job enables you to be your greatest self and — due to this fact — the perfect worker you could be.

You don’t should disclose if you wish to do business from home for flexibility round issues like little one care, home tasks, a incapacity or the rest that isn’t associated to the job.

three. What Is Your Home Office Set-Up?


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Nearly each particular person responded with this query. They wish to know you’ve obtained the area, gear and web connection to do business from home successfully.

“Do they've a appropriate and workable dwelling workplace already arrange?… I’d assume twice about anybody who says they don't,” mentioned David Walter, CEO of electrician coaching website Electrician Mentor.

Pro Tip

A number of managers instructed me they ask for a Zoom tour or photographs of an interviewee’s dwelling workplace area. That’s fairly invasive. Politely decline, reminding an interviewer that is your non-public dwelling.

You is perhaps unimaginable at your job, however an outdated pc and poor web connection will make you annoying to work with remotely. You’ll be sluggish to get work carried out and laborious to speak with.

If you’re critical a few distant place, be ready with:

An up-to-date pc. Desktop is okay, however have a totally functioning laptop computer, too, should you’ll ever work from wherever aside from your property workplace.
High-speed web. If you don’t have an ideal connection, get forward of it, and clarify how you're employed successfully with sluggish web.
A solution to focus. Interviewers would possibly ask whether or not you have got a devoted workplace area. You don’t want one, however you would possibly want to clarify the way you shut out at-home distractions whilst you work.

Some corporations contribute to your property workplace set-up by sending you gear, providing a stipend that can assist you purchase stuff your self or paying a month-to-month stipend to cowl your web and telephone payments.

four. When Do You Work Most Effectively?

Some, however not all, distant jobs include some or whole flexibility over your work schedule.

Hiring managers wish to know if you work most successfully or the way you construction your work day to know the way you’ll mesh with the staff.

“Working from house is just about a clean slate in comparison with going into an workplace,” mentioned Quincy Smith, co-founder of faculty prep website Test Prep Nerds, which has a totally distant staff of staff and contractors. “The solely construction is what you make for your self, and we wish to see individuals who have set routines, devoted work areas and consistency with their availability.”

Not each firm requires a constant routine for distant staff, however the way you reply this query additionally provides them a glimpse at your time-management abilities.

Knowing your simplest working hours is a fast solution to talk your skill to handle your time and be productive.

If your greatest hours are unconventional — like early mornings or late nights — clarify the way you construction your day to make your self out there to coworkers throughout typical workplace hours with out being on-line nonstop.

5. How Do You Manage Work-Life Balance?

Balancing dwelling life and work life is a big concern for anybody working from dwelling — and for his or her employers.

Alex Azoury, founder and CEO of Home Grounds, a website for espresso connoisseurs, asks potential staff: “What is your each day routine?”

“I don’t solely wish to hear about how they construction their work day,” mentioned Azoury. “I additionally wish to learn about how they incorporate consuming and exercising, in addition to each day private duties. This tells me how structured they're of their strategy to time administration.”

Yes, interviewers wish to hear about the way you keep targeted on work if you’re at dwelling. But additionally they wish to know the way you draw the road and swap off from work when the day is completed.

Pro Tip

Some work-life steadiness questions masks potential Title VII violations. You don’t should share your marital standing, little one care preparations or every other non-job-related particulars.

“Burnout is actual relating to distant work, so it’s tremendous necessary for us to know the way you reset if you really feel your productiveness slipping,” mentioned Smith. “What we wish to see is that you simply take 30 minutes to learn, stroll your canine or go to the fitness center.”

Those mind breaks are distinctive perks of working from dwelling. They would possibly sound like indulgences or distractions on the floor, however they display to an interviewer which you could acknowledge creeping burnout and know fight it.

6. How Do You Stay Productive and Focused?

A woman works from home.
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The greatest argument in opposition to distant work for years has been its potential impression on productiveness.

Despite a number of research over time — and staff themselves — asserting the opposite, some employers nonetheless fear we will’t get work carried out with out direct supervision.

“[One] side that can not be neglected is degree of maturity and work ethic,” mentioned Rahal.

Be ready for questions that assist interviewers assess these qualities, and reply with examples to indicate that you simply:

Take initiative.
Stay on prime of labor with minimal supervision.
Self-assess your productiveness ranges.
Make changes when your productiveness slips.

Sonya Schwartz, founding father of courting and relationship website Her Norm, mentioned supervision isn’t a priority for her.

“When I rent my workers, I actually put my belief in them,” she mentioned. “Whether they get supervised or not, I'm extra after the standard of their deliverables.”

Inspire that sort of belief in your interviewer by sharing particular ways you utilize to work effectively and successfully in any surroundings.

7. Do You Know How to Use [Insert Tool Here]?

Remote work means most of your communication and collaboration occurs on-line, so you must be savvy with the applications that facilitate distant work.

If you’re searching for distant jobs, get comfy with these fashionable instruments for:

Collaboration and file sharing: Google Drive and Docs, Office 365, Dropbox.
Video chat: Google Meet, Zoom.
Project administration: Asana, Trello.
Communication: Gmail, Slack, Skype.

eight. How Do You Communicate With a Remote Team?

Every interviewer ought to ask you this query for a distant place. If they don’t, contemplate it an indication you is perhaps left to fend for your self working at dwelling.

The greatest solution to talk remotely is determined by the staff and people — no methodology is universally right. The writerly people I work with have a tendency to slip into my DMs, for instance. When I discuss to CEOs or gross sales individuals, we get on the telephone.

Consider how you favor to speak — it’s OK if it varies with the circumstances. Do you wish to:

Get all of your ideas laid out fastidiously in an e-mail?
Chat casually by way of textual content or direct messages?
Hop on an impromptu telephone or video name?
Schedule a telephone or video assembly?
Save all the pieces for the weekly staff convention name?

“How they reply provides perception into whether or not they choose to work alone or in a bunch and the way successfully they’re capable of talk by way of textual content, video and different distant means,” mentioned Matt Erhard, managing companion on the recruitment agency Summit Search Group.

9. How Do You Resolve Problems Independently?

Working from dwelling may imply working at hours when nobody else in your staff is on the clock — particularly in case you have versatile hours or work with a workers that’s distributed throughout time zones.

To see how candidates deal with issues that come up after they’re on their very own, Taylor McCarthy Hansen, co-founder of ecommerce business weblog The Ecomm Manager, asks: “Name a tech situation you confronted when working remotely; how have been you capable of troubleshoot it?”

Several interviewers urged comparable questions that assess your skill to sort out issues when nobody is out there that can assist you.

This is an effective alternative to share a selected instance of a time you’ve been on this state of affairs.

How you would possibly deal with the state of affairs at a potential firm is determined by plenty of elements — sort of downside, firm protocol, your place and tasks — however a previous instance demonstrates the way you assume in your ft.

Get Ready for Your Next Remote Job

Employers should still have reservations about letting staff do business from home, however cultural shifts and employee expectations are slowly forcing their hand.

“Increasingly,” mentioned Rahal, “hiring for distant positions will turn out to be the brand new regular, because the paradigm of the outdated office has been utterly altered from the pandemic.”

Keep a watch out for extra distant positions because the pattern continues — or make your personal by asking your employer should you can do business from home.

Nail your distant job interview by getting ready responses to the considerations many employers nonetheless have about distant work — and present them you’ll be a star worker, regardless of the place you clock in.

Dana Sitar (@danasitar) has been writing and enhancing since 2011, overlaying private finance, careers and digital media.

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