Evolution of Remote Hiring in the US: Remote Staffing Survey Results

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Revelo conducted a remote staffing survey of 113 people who worked in software development, data engineering, and information technology from different locations around the United States.
Published on
July 1, 2022
Updated on
April 11, 2024

In April of 2022, Revelo conducted a remote staffing survey of 113 people who worked in software development, data engineering, and information technology from different locations around the United States. Among other things, Revelo was interested in these people's opinions about remote staffing.  

Summary of key results

  • The lockdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic brought a rapid change in the awareness and use of remote staffing.
  • 86% of respondents said their companies were now hiring remotely.
  • Before the pandemic, 64% of respondents said that their companies had never hired remote staff.
  • Awareness of remote hiring possibilities and education about how to go about integrating a remote workforce into a team seem to be the biggest factors in determining whether a company will choose to hire remotely.
  • The respondents listed quality of work, availability, and ability to communicate in both written and spoken English as the most important factors to consider when looking to hire remote employees.
  • Most respondents saw the cost of these remote workers as the least important factor in determining whether hiring remotely was a viable option.
  • When given a list of the most popular remote hiring platforms, including Revelo, only 40% had ever heard of any of them. Among those who had heard of at least one of the listed platforms, Revelo was the most recognized.
  • When introduced to the concept of remote hiring platforms, those who were new to the concept expected the costs of using hiring platforms to locate and employ remote workers to be higher than those who had previous knowledge of the concept.
  • Those who were aware of remote higher platforms expected these platforms to provide them with employees faster than they could do it on their own and for those employees to be aligned with their corporate base's time zone.

The following were the listed areas of consideration when hiring remotely:

  • Time zone
  • Overlap
  • Communication/soft skills
  • Technical/subject matter expertise
  • Speed of hiring
  • List of pre-vetted qualified candidates
  • Based in the United States
  • Proficiency in English
  • Lower cost

More respondents felt that expertise and communication skills were the areas to prioritize. Speed of hiring and lower costs were seen as the least important factors to consider when hiring remotely.

Survey methodology

This remote hiring survey was conducted to learn about the respondents' perceptions of remote staffing, their familiarity with it, and their hiring preferences. We used the following methodology:

Date: April, 2022

Respondents: 113

Qualification criteria

Job function: IT, software, data engineering/science, product management/design

Age: 25 to 60  

Location: United States

Employment: Full-time

Segments represented in the sample

Company size: 58% small to midsized businesses, 42% enterprises

Seniority: 8% entry-level, 57% mid-senior level individual contributors, 23% (senior) managers, 12% directors and up

Hiring decision makers: 18% final decision makers, 56% influence/participate in hiring decisions, 26% not involved

Personal work setup: 20% fully on-site, 42% fully remote, 35% hybrid

Statistical significance (roughly)

<6%, difference is not statistically significant

+/−6%, difference is directional (85% confidence)

>6%, difference is significant (90% confidence)

The shift in hiring remotely

There has been a momentous shift in the amount of remote hiring done in the United States. Before 2020, the concept of having a workforce that rarely, if ever, came to the office to get their work done was rarely considered. Sure, companies would sometimes outsource some of their IT or HR work, but the bulk of the work was done by teams of people all present at the same location at the same time.

Then the pandemic and resulting lockdowns struck, and everything changed. Employees discovered that they could avoid the commute and still competently get their work done, and many employers discovered that they could create and maintain a team of full-time employees while downsizing their brick-and-mortar offices.

At first, the transition to remote work was panicked and fraught with problems. Now that both employers and employees have had time to adapt to the idea, the practice of hiring people to be 100% remote workers that are full-fledged members of the team has jumped in popularity.

Before the pandemic, only 22% of companies were regularly hiring full-time remote workers. By 2022, only a few years later, only 14% of companies are not employing full-time remote workers to handle some aspects of their daily work.  

The changing factors in hiring remotely

Another thing that this remote staffing survey highlighted was the change in reasons for hiring remotely and the factors that employers consider when doing so. Before the pandemic, remote hiring was usually done in the form of outsourcing. That is, a company would hire a firm to provide them with specific services, like IT or HR, rather than paying full-time employees to do it for them.

This outsourcing was done as a means to get expert services while cutting costs. These outsourced employees were not employed by the companies they serviced but simply contracted to complete certain tasks. Although these outsourced workers were expected to have the experience and technical skills required to get the job done, the largest factor considered when hiring them was cost.

Remote staffing is viewed very differently now. Now employers are looking to hire full-time remote employees who will become integral parts of their workforce. They are looking to build entire teams that can work together to imagine, design, and create new products without necessarily ever being in the same location.

Now, when considering remote hires, technical expertise and communication skills rank among the highest priorities. It's considered more important now that these remote employees fit into the company’s culture and values. Employers want remote employees who consider themselves part of the team and whom the other team members consider colleagues and peers.

Of course, as with any business decision, costs still factor into the equation. Many companies are finding that the use of a reputable remote hiring platform like Revelo allows them to find the high-quality and loyal remote employees they're looking for while still saving them time and money over going through the process on their own.

Lack of awareness of remote staffing solutions

Another finding of the remote hiring survey was that almost half of the respondents were unaware of remote hiring platforms and how they could streamline the process of finding and hiring remote employees. Educating companies about these platforms and the advantages they can offer them can help them find solutions to some of the problems facing hiring managers today.

In the technologically based global marketplace, innovation and adaptability are the keys to long-term success for any business. Remote workers, especially those from different regions or countries, offer new perspectives. These unique perspectives are often breeding grounds for innovative thinking, especially if they are integrated into a team filled with differing perspectives.  

Using a remote staffing platform offers companies access to a large pool of new perspectives with minimal effort on their part. Because these remote employees are pre-vetted to meet not only a company’s skill sets but also its work culture, hiring managers can focus on soft skills like creativity and problem solving that support innovative and out-of-the-box thinking.

Another problem facing companies looking to hire these days is the lack of workers. It is not that Americans don’t have the skills required to do technologically advanced jobs, it's just that there aren't enough experienced candidates to choose from. The lack of American employees leads to a competitive market, which drives up costs to hire and, in many cases, lowers standards.  

The more companies that understand how remote hiring platforms can open the door to a large pool of qualified candidates, the less competitive the hiring process will be. This means that all remote employees, whether from the United States or elsewhere, are more likely to stay at their current jobs and look to improve their situation by improving the company they work for. This is a winning situation for both the employers and the employees.

When it comes to international remote hiring, closer is better

Some of the major stumbling blocks for international remote hiring are language barriers, cultural differences, and time zone issues. All of these issues can be mitigated by using international remote workers that are close to home. Remote workers who live in Latin America can offer the advantages of international hires, such as lower costs and strong work ethics, without the hassles often associated with international remote workers.

The English language is already widely spoken in many Latin American countries. In recent years, some of these countries have made a push to get more of their people fluent in English for the sole purpose of making them more marketable as remote employees of US-based companies. The result is a large pool of skilled employees from Latin American companies who are able to communicate freely in both written and spoken English.

Although there are still many cultural differences between the United States and Latin America, their close proximity has led to a blending of the two cultures. Latin American people often have access to American television and radio stations, and thousands of Americans cross the border every day for business and pleasure. This familiarity with each other's cultures creates a bridge to understanding and makes it possible for teams made up of people from both cultures to meld and work together seamlessly.

Working with people in widely differing time zones is an endless source of disruption and frustration. The greater the difference in time zones, the more headaches are likely to occur. Not only will some of the members of the team have to lose sleep in order to stay in contact with the rest of them, but the chances of confusion about times and dates increase with every hour difference.

The countries in Latin America largely share the same time zones with the United States. While the remote employee you hire may not be in the exact time zone as the rest of the team, they will be no further off than they would be if you hired a remote worker from a different American region.

How remote staffing is different from traditional recruiting

Traditional recruiting can be a time-consuming and tedious job, especially in the current employment market. First, the hiring manager will have to come up with an accurate and appealing job description. Then they need to find the best places to post this description, which may change rapidly as new technologies and websites spring up.

Next come the resumes and applications, all of which must be reviewed, sorted, and prioritized. Once you've narrowed down the field, the work of vetting the candidates begins. Even in the digital age, checking references and verifying employment and education histories takes time.

Finally, once you've whittled down the candidates to a chosen few, it's time to begin interviewing them. Depending on the exact position you are looking to fill, this may entail several meetings with various staff members, skill testing, and thorough questioning.

The hardest part? In a competitive hiring market, you may go through all of these steps, find the perfect candidate, make them a fair offer, and have them turn it down because they got a better opportunity somewhere else. All of that time, energy, and money was wasted. It's enough to drive even the most patient people to the brink.

Consider the alternative. Using a remote staffing hiring platform shortens the entire process, takes much of the responsibility off of the head of the hiring manager, and presents you with candidates who are less likely to look elsewhere for other opportunities. Look what a reputable hiring platform like Revelo can do for you.

Revelo takes care of all your recruiting and hiring chores. All you need to do is present them with a profile of the employee you're looking for. Include not only the hard skills you need but also any soft skills or characteristics needed for the employee to fit into your company's culture. That’s it.

For one monthly fee, Revelo will set out to find you some perfect candidates to choose from. Once you've decided on one, Revelo will take care of all of the HR responsibilities as well. This includes hiring, benefits, payroll, perks, and ensuring that you and your new employee are compliant with all local laws and regulations.

About Revelo

Revelo is a talent marketplace designed for the sole purpose of connecting tech talent from Latin America with the US-based companies that need their services. We've partnered with hundreds of American companies and helped them to adapt to the rapid changes in hiring and work practices that have happened in the last two years.

At Revelo, we know that remote work is a trend that will only continue to grow as the technology that makes it possible advances and the need for workers grows. We make it possible for American companies of any size to find the talent they need to adapt quickly and seamlessly.

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