Voices of Remote Work
3 min

How to Onboard Remote Employees | Carlos Silva of Chili Piper

For Walking Meetings & Remote Work

The shift to remote work has transformed many business functions including onboarding, which plays a critical role in a new hire's success and happiness.

Carlos Silva is the SEO Content Manager at Chili Piper, an inbound conversion platform. We asked him to share some tips for successful remote onboarding. 

Spot: What does remote work mean to you?

Carlos: As a Venezuelan who was displaced from his country, remote work is what saved my life. I wouldn’t be able to have my current job if remote work wasn’t possible. One thing I’ve noticed is that “remote work” is definitely not the same as “working from home.” And if you’re not conscious of the difference between the two, you may struggle when joining a remote team. Therefore, I like to share advice from my own remote work experience. 

S: Wow, talk about resilience! What is the first piece of advice you typically share? 

C: So to start with: Onboarding. This is a very important milestone during the employee journey. A common mistake new joiners make is they want to hit the ground running on Day 1. They might feel pressure to prove they are the best fit for their role but this just leads to stress and frustration. To avoid this, at Chili Piper we assign a buddy during the Onboarding process, so we can align expectations with them from their first day. 

S: What tips can you share about the structure of the Onboarding process?

C: I think that the Onboarding process should last at least 3 weeks. The first week should be oriented to the product and organization (conversations around strategy, goal setting, KPIs, etc.). The second week should be more focused on a technical perspective (processes and tools) and during the third week, the new joiner should feel comfortable getting to know the rest of the team. Be sure to make time for team bonding!

S: What is the best recipe for avoiding failure during the Onboarding process?

C: For both employers and employees, I truly believe in over-communication especially when most of your work is done asynchronously. Don’t assume anything, not even the smallest things. Ask questions, participate, raise your hand, and unmute yourself during calls where you’re feeling happy or curious. Turn implicit things into more explicit. And be transparent! On Spot, I can feel this sense of transparency which I think can really support the social aspect of the Onboarding process. I feel comfortable saying how I feel because this is “just” a conversation. I don’t feel judged.

On the other hand, you have to be really hard on documentation. Having single sources of truth will help everyone feel more confident about their job requirements and decision-making processes. 

S: How can Spot be an ally to achieve these tips you’ve shared?

C:  When it comes to telling your teammates what you expect from them, transparency is so important. The seamlessness of Spot is that you can invite anyone on the team to join a meeting, like “a round table” where we can share thoughts and learn from each other. In your meetings, be sure to give accurate and timely feedback and always be intentional about showing you truly care about them. 

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