6 Talent Hunters share the qualities they look for when hiring remote candidates

Working from home, remote working, flexible working arrangements – these are key people strategies many businesses are looking into right now as we learn to live with Covid19.

But not everyone is cut out to be a remote worker and there are certain qualities that enable a person to be successful in the remote environment. We spoke to some of your peers to find out what characteristics they look for when hiring remote employees.

What do you think? Use the comment section to share your thoughts!


Irene Bau
Talent Acquisition Director ANZ at L’Oréal

The one attribute I value most is the ability to be a self-starter. You want to know that your future remote employee can continue to motivate themselves. The days where a boss was looking over your every move or holding your hand and telling you what is required and how… are gone!

The clear signs of meeting a self-starter at interview is their ability to demonstrate past behaviours of:

  • Ambition as they have examples of setting and driving their own goals and always willing to stretch themselves and their teams.
  • They will have stories of resilience, as they moved beyond previous obstacles quickly and provided alternate solutions even when things seemed too difficult.
  • They will seem curious by nature and be able to adapt to changes easily, which is increasingly important no matter what industry you are in.
  • And lastly they will have an air of confidence, as they have absolute faith in their own intuition and will have proof of completed tasks without having needed to deliberate.

Hanita Singh
Talent Acquisition Partner at Victorian Managed Insurance Authority

Being resilient – it would demonstrate how focused and productive they will be. Being resilient models positive behaviour. It demonstrates their ability to manage the pressure and work effectively.

They will need to be comfortable with the challenges of remote working and despite the issues that can occur, they will work together with their manager and teams to resolve them for the good of the team, dept and the organisation as a whole.


Leigh Peters
Head of Recruitment at 2degrees NZ

Self-motivation – for us this is key, regardless of whether the person is office based, remote, or a combination of the two! We assess self-motivation, along with optimism, ownership and creative problem solving right through the recruitment process – from screening, psychometric assessments and also through the interview.

But the onus is not all on the employee, the business and its leaders need to clearly set expectations, create a collaborative environment and utilise the right technology to achieve these. Covid-19 has been a great lesson for everyone in remote working and we are excited to be on a company-wide journey to figure out what our new way of working looks like now and in the future.


Edan Haddock
Talent Manager at Flybuys

If I was to identify an attribute I look forward today, I would say AGILITY. The nature of work is evolving, changing, and it won’t return to the days of a pre-COVID world. Future Talent will need to be highly flexible, self-driven (and self-managed) with a comfortable risk appetite. 

We all need to feel empowered to make decisions every day, and work in a test and learn environment – it is the only way we can move forward. Companies that are heavily focussed on process or bureaucracy will not survive. Likewise Talent that present very process driven or require a highly structured working environment perhaps won’t be prepared for the changing landscape of a modern workplace that seems to be evolving day by day.


Pavi Iyer
Talent Acquisition Lead at Catapult

I think remote candidates would definitely need to be well organised and great communicators. 

Working within remote teams already comes with its own challenges but constant communication/touch points definitely help make the inter-team relationships that much smoother. Being able to share with your teams, and even creating those virtual relationships early on, is all dependent on how great their channels of communication are. 

It makes for a smoother transition, and sets the foundation for strong remote working teams.


Sarah Shore
Resourcing Partner at Bupa

Make sure your remote candidates have the right motivators. Are they motivated by the company’s purpose, do their values align, do they have a personal interest/passion in what they’re applying for, or is just the benefits? Motivation is an enabler for good communication, collaboration, building trust, and provides you with the drive to work independently. 

If a candidate has the right motivation for a role, they are more likely to have the self-discipline to get the work done regardless of their location. When working remotely candidates won’t always have their manager or team around to provide support and it can be harder to build relationships, the individual needs to be proactive in their approach and have the want to succeed. 


If you are an internal Talent Acquisition executive for a corporate organisation, we would love to have you at our exclusive Future of Talent 2020 event series. Click to learn more and register your interest today.

Related articles

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Sign up to our newsletter

Get a weekly digest on the latest in Talent Acquisition.

Deliver this goodness to my inbox!