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How to start a remote job without harming your performance

Mark Zuckerberg may have said it first, but he is not the only founder who realised that lacklustre online onboarding systems are problematic for both the employee and the employer.

The pandemic resulted in many companies adopting hybrid and remote working sooner than they may have expected. While the results relating to productivity and profit show that a dispersed workforce is not a negative for the majority of businesses, we are starting to see that as people move jobs, many companies have yet to tackle online onboarding. 

In the case of Meta, Zuckerberg shared a memo with staff announcing another wave of job cuts, and he also revealed that internal data showed that engineers who had initially started work at Meta in-person were performing better than those who onboarded remotely.


Zuckerberg’s solution was to encourage staff to find the perfect hybrid mix, especially for new hires, where they will spend time working together in person.

Other companies can learn from Meta’s discovery. Research shows that new hires who are onboarded with care and attention are likely to be 18 times more committed to their employer and 82% more likely to stay with the company, especially younger workers and those who are more junior.

With demand high for tech professionals increasing and supply lower than ever, companies can no longer ignore the need for robust online onboarding processes.

Experts suggest that onboarding should be done in person over the course of several days with clear tasks and KPIs set to ensure new hires are settling in and adding value immediately.

One-on-one meetings with internal stakeholders and colleagues are key to achieving this while in-person onboarding also helps new hires build relationships more quickly. They will also benefit from the tacit knowledge of co-workers in understanding how the company approaches certain things.

Additionally, pairing a new hire up with an existing staff member in a mentorship programme has been shown to improve productivity by 87%, as well as giving new hires a safe space in which to ask questions they may not want to escalate to their manager.

Adopting a similar approach can also work from an employee perspective. If your new employer does not already have a clear onboarding process in place for remote workers, then create your own.

Ask colleagues and stakeholders for virtual coffees, ask your manager to do a round of introductions on the next team huddle, making sure to give context to everybody’s role, and ask for a clear set of guidelines of what is expected of you during your first 30 days.

It is also important to schedule regular catch-ups with your direct boss and any direct reports so you can build relationships and get to know your co-workers. This also creates an atmosphere for open discussion, meaning you can address issues as they arise and ask questions in an informal manner––making onboarding easier.

If you are currently dissatisfied with your company’s staff retention policies––or if they do not have any policies and you are feeling undervalued––the Finextra Job Board is jam-packed with companies across the fintech space hiring for roles of all experience levels. Discover three exciting roles below.

Backend QA Engineer, Zopa, London

The Role: As a Backend QA Engineer with Zopa you will work to provide a quality experience for our users by building solid processes, following best practice and preventing issues and problems from occurring at an early stage.

The Responsibilities: You will be responsible for collaborating and working within Zopa’s small, agile cross-functional squads to understand the product, advocate for the customer by speaking up and challenging when you feel it is right to do so and be a true driver of quality.

The Requirements: You will have strong experience in backend testing using Python or Kotlin and a proven record working in backend automation testing. You will be an advocate for quality at all stages, and be experienced with CI/CD tools, such as Jenkins.

Apply for the Backend QA Engineer role or browse all available opportunities with Zopa.

Process Improvement Specialist, Zilch, London

The Role: As Process Improvement Specialist with Zilch you will join the business operations team and work collaboratively with multiple stakeholders to continually simplify, streamline, and improve our processes and services.

The Responsibilities: You will work to identify, plan, and implement key projects to improve quality, reduce costs, increase productivity, and improve cycle time by reducing wasted time and rework, resulting in significant business improvement and customer satisfaction.

The Requirements: You will have demonstrated project and process delivery skills, including accurate project planning, milestone delivery, project resource management, and effective status updates as well as process delivery skills, including accurate project planning, milestone delivery, project management, and effective status updates.

Apply for the Process Improvement Specialist role or browse all available opportunities at Zilch.

Full Stack Developer, Starling Bank, Southampton

The Role: As a Full Stack Developer with Starling Bank you will use Java to build the tooling that is used by Starling’s engineers on a daily basis.

The Responsibilities: You will take ownership of an idea and work to code backend services, ideally using Java, or another other server-side compiled language while developing modern front ends, ideally using React and Redux.

The Requirements: You will have a proven track record in full stack and be comfortable polishing JavaScript front end, debugging the innards of Java applications database interactions, and tweaking CloudFormation templates.

Apply for the Full Stack Developer role or browse all available opportunities with Starling Bank.

Browse the Finextra Job Board to discover even more exciting opportunities.

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