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Will Your Next Virtual Role Be In HR… 61

Whether you are a young whippersnapper just graduated from college or a seasoned veteran of the HR office, there are plenty of HR positions that can now be filled from the vast workstations of cyberspace.

Different Thinking, New World

In fact, telecommuting is the natural next step for a corporate department that has embraced IT probably more than any other – well, except for the IT department, I guess.

What areas do HR telecommute positions cover?

It would probably be much easier for me to cover the areas virtual HR can’t cover (maybe tea lady).

A quick glance through the virtual HR recruitment ads reveals that companies are on the lookout for both generalists and specialists working at every level from associate/assistant up to project manager. Specialist areas include recruitment (more on that later), employee relations, benefits admin, workers’ comp and career development. Some roles stray suspiciously into accounting, customer service and sales territory – HR is often defined in broad brush strokes these days.

However, one sharply defined role that is purely HR through-and-through is recruitment and whether we call it talent scouting, headhunting or classification specialising (yeah, really) it’s all about finding and hiring the right employees.

What do recruiters do?

The job description of a typical recruiter doesn’t really exist. Some roles give telecommuters a leading role in identifying successful candidates, selling the company to them, interviewing them, presenting their resumes to the board and informing them of their success (I’m being positive here). Others might be more task-orientated, with telecommuters entrusted with pre-interview screening or record keeping.

What experience and qualifications would I need?

Again this varies widely with some roles needing los of both and others more flexible. Some companies insist on degrees, specific qualifications, HRIS knowhow and a number of years of experience, while others specify no entry requirements.

Managers and virtual HR

If you are approaching this from the other side of the virtual highway and thinking of dipping your feet into employing a telecommuter or two, there are some serious benefits.

Research in 2008 (Hewitt) estimated that American companies saved themselves $2,000 on average per employee, while according to Mulki, Bardhi, Lassk and Nanavaty-Dahl (2009), IBM cut a whopping $100 million from their bottom line, with 42% virtual employees across the globe.

Telecommuters tend to have a better work/life balance and suffer less burnout, but you do need to make an extra effort to keep some of them engaged!

(c) New To HR.

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Nicole Le Maire
People are important, whether you like it or not. That is where I come in, it is my work and passion to improve your business, people and... bottom-line. My job is to help you and offer people insights in a transparent and understandable way. My diverse international (35+ countries) management and HR experience spans from start-ups to established organisations advising them through their stages of creation, growth, and stabilisation. I have extensive hands-on experience leading business and HR initiatives, including instructional design (online courses), organisational development and design, policy (re-)design, compensation and benefits, performance management, recruiting, HRIS implementations, HR workflow development.