4 Essential Types of Tools for
Human Resources Managers
in the Age of Remote Work

See also: Managing Remote Teams

As technologies are always advancing, it can be argued that essential skills are always in a state of flux and there are always going to be new innovations to explore and master. With these new innovations comes a need for relevant new skills to best use and adapt the technologies. This particularly holds true for any individual holding a position of leadership – because it is the leaders who make decisions on which technologies will be adopted, which will be ignored, and whether the current benchmarks for recruiting and training employees need to be reconsidered as new technologies are implemented.

Human resources managers, in particular, are finding that they need to become proficient with new tools. They still need to be adept at all the skills that have historically been important for HR professionals, but, beyond that, the trend towards remote work has created a need for HR managers who have mastered the ability to manage some or all of their team remotely.

While it is impossible to predict the future of work with one-hundred percent certainty, many experts believe that the shift towards remote work is not merely a passing fad. They are forecasting that, for many workers, this will be a permanent change. In describing this shift, Forbes has quoted Marc Cendella, the founder and CEO of Ladders, Inc., who predicts that this will be a large-scale societal shift that has the potential to affect everyone.

The following are four essential types of tools for human resources managers in the age of remote work, along with some specific examples of these tools that may prove helpful to today’s HR managers:

1. Video Conferencing Tools (And the Skills to Use Them)

In-person interviewing skills are still essential for HR professionals, according to Alan Collins, who was a former Vice President of Human Resources at PepsiCo. While Mr. Collins doesn’t believe that video interviews will entirely replace in-person interviews, he states that video interviewing is now a crucial skill for HR professionals. Furthermore, he predicts that video interviews will continue to become more important in the months and years ahead, and he suggests that HR professionals should become proficient at acing video interviews.

The following are some of the tools you’ll need for video conferencing and conducting video interviews:

  • A noise-canceling headset with a mute button
  • Skype
  • LiveMeeting
  • Zoom
  • Webex
See Also: 5 Tips to Crush Your Next Video Conference with Outstanding Presentation Skills

2. A Trusted VPN Service

Cybersecurity professionals typically have a list of recommendations for remote workers to keep their business secure. One of the most important recommendations on the list is to use a VPN service. A VPN is a virtual private network; this tool encrypts your company’s data and routes that data through secure servers. The goal is to protect the data, ensuring your team’s privacy and security during business interactions online.

3. Remote Team Collaboration and Onboarding Tools

Remote teams can communicate via phone and email, but these aren’t always the most efficient methods. The following collaboration tools can also be useful to master:

Google Drive – Your team members can share collaborative spreadsheets, documents, and slide presentations using the suite of tools available from Google Drive.

Slack – This platform is sort of like an online message board, but it has many features that distinguish it from the message boards of the early internet era. In particular, this platform enables instant group messaging and offers many features that empower remote online collaboration.

Dropbox – This tool is useful for file sharing. In particular, you can use it for sending large files that would be cumbersome to email to your team members or prospective hires.

Docusign – This tool is useful for sending, receiving and signing contracts efficiently via the internet.

ISmartRecruit – This artificial-intelligence-based software is intended to help HR professionals leverage social media to connect with qualified potential candidates.

4. Employee Assessment Tests

There are now cases when you’ll never actually have any in-person meetings or interviews with the employees you’re hiring. In cases like these, you’ll have to rely on other ways of evaluating the candidates you are considering. Personal recommendations can be useful, but these can be a challenge to obtain; corporate human resources staff members are typically forbidden to make employee recommendations – and of course, it is possible for candidates to be dishonest when they provide you with their references.

Prospective employee assessments are becoming more important. There are many possible assessments to consider; the following are a few of the available tests and assessments you’ll want to familiarize yourself with:

Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator - This personality test is based on principles of Jungian psychology.

Enneagram Tests – An enneagram can be defined as a nine-sided figure that some social psychologists use to represent and analyze the spectrum of possible personality types.

TestGorilla – This candidate screening tool suite offers a library of 238 different tests that the purveyors claim are all scientifically validated. With this software package, you get personality tests, values tests and tests for competencies such as coding and critical thinking. 

CodeSignal – This platform is intended to give HR professionals in the tech sector objective, skills-based solutions for screening and interviewing prospective candidates. They offer multiple useful integrations with other popular HR platforms. 

Owiwi – This is a gamified screening platform intended to help HR professionals to easily measure their candidates decision-making skills, teamwork capabilities, resilience, integrity and other skills. 

WonScore – WonScore is employee pre-screening software that’s designed to measure cognitive ability, personality, and personal motivation levels.

HireQuotient – This platform is AI-based and makes use of chatbots to help with evaluating prospective candidates’ business competencies.

These are some of the most essential types of tools that today’s HR manager needs to have access to when managing a partially or fully remote team of workers. Of course, in addition to the above tools, you’ll also need all the usual workplace basics such as a telephone, fax machine, computer, internet connection, printer, scanner and copier. Considering that remote work is no longer a novelty, mastery of the above tools is becoming increasingly essential for the continued success of every human resources professional.

About the Author

Andrej is an entrepreneur, a digital marketer and an avid internet technologist. Throughout his career, Andrej has combined his passion for cutting-edge technology with a keen eye for emerging industry trends to deliver customized marketing solutions to businesses and clients around the globe. He believes that the key to modern marketing excellence is a constant willingness to learn and adapt to the ever-changing digital world.