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Most people don’t make the distinction between the different options to acquire remote talent. Nor for that matter, do they realize that the usual talent acquisition methods fail to fetch results for the remote.

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You can’t take the route from A to B and expect to reach C.

Of course not. We all know that don’t we?

You’ll be surprised to know how often companies make that mistake. One classic case of this is their approach to acquiring remote talent.

They take the traditional hiring approach and practices to find and hire remote employees too.

This is why traditional talent acquisitions fail to attract remote talent:

Working remotely

Simple, remote talent is not is available in your usual talent hubs. Sure, they might check these occasionally, but the remote community prefers more specialized platforms.

Here’s how your usual methods pan out for finding remote candidates:

Careers page won’t work

You could post your remote job openings in the careers of your website like you usually post your other positions. But if you’re not a known remote hiring company, chances are your job post will not reach your audience.

But we would suggest companies to post it on their careers page too, for a good reason: it helps add legitimacy to your posting.

It also has the added benefit of being able to mention your specific needs in terms of the employee location or time zone that the usual portals may not have a provision too. Some companies prefer to link back their opening to their own site to populate the applications directly to their ATS (Application Tracking Systems).

Referrals won’t work

If you already employees working remotely, a simple referral program may fetch surprising results. Employee referrals are one of the most useful ways to find the best candidates for a job and the same works for remote too. The current remote employees understand the requirements of the job and well as from the potential employees and could help you find the right fit.

There is some form of recognition or incentive to their employees once the hire is made. It always helps to find some way to do this with your remote employees too, even if they are miles away.

The downsides to this are that:

  1. If you’re just starting to hire remote, or for that matter, you’re just starting to hire (building your core team), you obviously don’t have employees to run a referral program.
  2. You may not be able to leverage your employee’s network well enough to get good candidates.

This turns us into another obvious but efficient way to find talent.

LinkedIn may work

LinkedIn has, without a doubt, made networking a lot more accessible than it used to be. With over 610 million members, 90 million senior-level influencers, and 63 million decision-makers using LinkedIn, the largest and one of the most trusted professional platforms.

With the current job, career history, education, all publicly accessible, along with the provision of posting your openings, make LinkedIn one of the best places to find talent.

Is it just as useful to find remote candidates? Well, a year ago, we would have been hard-pressed to agree. LinkedIn job postings came with a location tag, but as of late, companies have been picking remote as a location, making it a known and accepted source for finding remote talent.

But as is the case with the careers page, it doesn’t mean much for you unless candidates are looking for remote roles on the platform. While the trend is definitely picking up, it doesn’t seem to have enough volume or momentum to guarantee a good hire.

Job boards and job search engines are too much hassle

Job boards are websites that post jobs supplied by employers, typically charging the employer a fee for the service. They work as resume databases that sell this data to the employers. Search engines simply scour the different websites collecting and displaying the job posts. Since this distinction is not too relevant to our discussion, we are not treating them as separate for convenience, though you can read more about it here.

Monster, Indeed, SimplyHired, CareerBuilder is some top job boards and search engines where you can post your openings. This is not the most successful way to hire either. Employers revealed in a study by PBS that only 1.3% of their new hires came from Monster while a close 1.2% came from CareerBuilder.

Keeping the above figures though, you know the hire rates you can expect from these portals.

So what works really works in acquiring remote hiring?

Remote talent needs a remote-first approach

Remote talent needs a remote-first approach

Fortunately for you, there are several organizations – portals, platforms, and the like, dedicated to enable or support remote hiring.

There aren’t a lot of clear and defined lines to distinguish all the different remote organizations out there. But suffice to say, they are not all the same. Their talent acquisition and in turn the pricing models vary widely and so by extension, what it means for your company in terms of the talent you find and the hiring process you need.

We attempt to briefly make that distinction of the main types of remote hiring organizations to help you figure out what works best for you.

­Remote platforms or marketplaces work ✔

There are specialized job boards and search engines catering to a more narrow and niche segment and requirements. One such segment which branched out and grew is the remote sector.

Remote job listing sites, as evident from the name, have the same function as job boards or search engines but for remote work only. They can be seen as hiring marketplaces that bring together remote talent and the companies seeking it under one domain.

What they offer:

These platforms collate large numbers of remote job postings and/or job seekers for a nominal to low cost. The pricing models vary, some charge the companies a small fee (about 3% of the billed amount) for posting their job opening, others charge a percentage per job accepted from the companies or individuals.

Pros and cons:

The benefits of these platforms would be the number of candidates available and the low pricing, which makes them an attractive option for a lot of small and medium-sized firms.

On the flip side, these platforms don’t assess the candidates registered with them nor do they curate the entities that are posting the openings. As a result, the quality and legitimacy of the candidate (or the job opening, for that matter) are questionable. There are some rules and guidelines in place to ensure smooth sailing, but companies still have to screen and curate the candidates, which would require dedicating some time and resources.

Remote hiring agencies work ✔

Agencies find talent on your behalf

Agencies find talent on your behalf

Agencies are more client-oriented than marketplaces. While a hiring agency covers all that a marketplace does, but differ in their business or pricing models – similar to recruitment agencies, but specializing in remote talent. CrewScale is a remote hiring agency

What they offer:

They assess and curate their talent pool.  They can share an appropriate list of candidates shortlisted with your company, depending on your job requirements and skill set needed. The agencies usually provide an account manager or executive to make sure the client’s necessities are met.

Pros and cons:

Vetted candidates mean higher candidate quality and lesser hassle and work for your company. The pricing is comparatively higher than a marketplace, but it’s also justified.

The disadvantages are scant. Hired talent requires management, usually a product or project manager to make sure that the project deliverables are meeting the expected standards and deadlines. The pricing might be too high for early-stage startups that are building their core systems.

Managed/monitored hiring agencies work ✔

Managed or monitored hiring agencies to take responsibility for the project delivery as well as the candidate management. For all intents and purposes act as a block between your company and the remote workers.

What they offer:

Managed agencies provide pre-assessed candidates from a high-quality talent pool. They have systems in place to track the project deliverables and deadlines. They also track the hours in case of hourly payments.

Pros and cons:

Since the agencies assume the responsibility of the candidate, you need not onboard or manage the working hours, payments, or leaves of the remote worker. Agency taking ownership of the project translates to low risk for your company.

Managed agencies obviously charge more than the former two. Companies are usually billed about $30 to $60/hour per hire, depending on the type of role. An upfront fee of about $250 to $500 may also be required.

What works for you?

A very subjective question no doubt, but here’s what it comes down to:

  • Your budget constraints
  • Constraints to filter and test the candidate bids
  • Resources to manage the hired talent

Once you have the above jotted down, you can pick the right type of remote agency. Know that all remote talent websites don’t have the same offerings and pick the right one that fits your needs. Proceed to book a demo or take a trial.

We strongly suggest companies to understand their requirements and resource constraints to pick which model works the best for them. If you need any clarification or support on this, feel free to reach out to us for a quick chat at

Dheeraj Lalchandani

About Dheeraj Lalchandani

Interested in solving problems that haven't been discovered or solved, loves reading interesting articles, always up for a good debate, likes confluence of history with philosophy to solve modern day problems. Dheeraj's job involves recruiting great talent and most importantly, being a people person and keeping the office spirits up.

View all posts by Dheeraj Lalchandani

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