20Oct
We want to expand our staff in the new year, but isn’t it too early to think about that? If you know that hiring more people will be a Q1 task, it’s not too early to prepare. Like most things in business, planning is the best thing you can do for the most successful outcome.

What Will You Be Looking for in a Candidate?

The first step is determining what departments or areas in your company have gaps.

You must ensure you have outlined clear job descriptions for each role type and, when possible, lay out a career path for each position. This information is invaluable during the interview as savvy prospects will ask about future growth within the company.

That’s a good thing as it will mean that individual is seeking a long-term opportunity.

It is also beneficial to have a profile of what type of person you seek, also known as an “avatar.” It may sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. Is there an example of someone who performs at the level you want? It could be within or outside of your company. If you have an example of the qualities, write them down, and include questions that help them convey how they would manage certain situations.

  • How do you manage your team members during a tight deadline?
  • Give me an example of how your communication skills kept a project moving forward.
  • How do you handle conflict among your team members?

Set the Wheels in Motion

If the first quarter is the hiring timeline, don't wait until the beginning of the year rolls around before preparing for a great hire.

After you’ve completed the above step of detailing what you’re looking for in both skills and qualities, you’re ready to determine mediums to secure the best candidate.

During the holidays, people are busy and not necessarily seeking a career move, especially if they’re counting on an end-year bonus. If you’re working with a recruiter, this time of year isn’t as daunting as their network never sleeps.

They have access to candidates who want to make a move in the new year but aren’t actively looking via the most common means.

This advance action will still allow you to postpone the actual hire to Q1, but wouldn’t it be great to begin the process to hit the ground running in the new year? In a candidate-driven market, this thinking will make all the difference.

Get the Market Facts

When you work with a professional recruiter, they should be following the trends and will provide more clarity when it comes to competitive salaries for that job type.

And, since money isn’t always the deciding factor, a recruiter can:

  • Offer suggestions about other benefits that will keep you competitive and attract the candidates you want.
  • Help you define your company culture so everyone involved knows what to expect.

Ask for Help

If you're like most business owners or department heads, your plate is full.

A successful search involves:

  • Reviewing and filtering incoming resumes
  • Doing your best to separate the legitimate from the “creative” applicants who embellish their qualifications
  • Networking
  • Engaging on social media
  • Upfront interviews to narrow the candidate pool

Yes, you can do it on your own, and some business owners are used to it, but working with a recruiter will allow you to continue to focus on your core business.

Don’t Push the Process
Remember the adage, “Hire Slow, Fire Fast, no matter what route you follow.” The goal is to expand your team to include candidates with the qualifications that will bring value to your company and complement your current team.
And finally, when you get a process in place that works, document it so that you can replicate it for the next hire.
23Jun
For many businesses, day-to-day office functions are back to normal or almost there. And, as incoming business increases, it may be a sign that it’s time to ensure you can scale to manage everything.
If you’re like so many other businesses who found it necessary to lay off employees during the pandemic, you may now be in a position where you need to “replenish” your team.

Some of us may feel a little rusty, but when it comes to ensuring you’re up-to-date with all things human resource-related, this is an excellent time to make sure your ducks are in a row.

Let’s talk about what you should focus on initially to get things back on track before hiring new employees.

What is Your Company Culture?

Why is this such a critical question? Because it will be impossible for you to properly relay this information to hiring partners or potential employees if you don't know yourself. In addition, quality candidates will want to know what to expect so that they're able to make an educated decision before considering employment with your company. Ask yourself:

  • What are your company values?
  • Do you have clear expectations for your employees?
  • Is it apparent that you are open to diversity?
  • Are you open to new ideas so that the team can feel challenged and valued?

If you have an up-to-date employee handbook, this will make it easy for everyone to be on the same page. In addition, this allows them to refer to it when they feel themselves potentially veering away from the company guidelines. And of course, making yourself available should someone have questions is invaluable as it encourages a comfortable but professional environment. If your culture is a bit more stringent, make sure you relay that early on, as there are also people who thrive just as well in that atmosphere. It’s all good as long as there’s an upfront agreement of what to expect.

When you hire a staffing solutions partner, this is one of the areas where they can be a tremendous help. A quality firm will be experts in gathering and relaying this information to help narrow the field for you.

Create a Solid Hiring Plan

A solid team should consist of the right set of skills and those who have the proper attitude and work well within the culture you have developed.

Now that you’ve solidified your cultural expectations, you will have some good information to begin laying out your plan. When presented with a quality applicant, it makes a terrible first impression only to stumble through the interview because you weren’t clear on your company’s expectations.

You want to:
Determine their skills and how it fits within the job you’re looking to fill
Learn if they will get along with other employees by asking questions that will bring out their personality.

 

Much of this will be determined early on if you are working with a solid recruiter who can have an open conversation with the potential candidate before you even meet them.

Are You Up-to-Date With Laws and Regulations

Just like everything, human resource laws are constantly changing. But, unfortunately, this is one of the most overlooked areas because we get so busy that we may let something as simple as a one-page critical form fall between the cracks.

Ensure you have a system in place so that they are provided with the necessary forms to complete as required by law each time you onboard a new employee. And once you have the paperwork, designate a secure place to store them out of reach of other employees. Go digital when possible but remember some forms, should you be audited, are still required to be in the form of paper. If possible, delegate this process to a member of HR or another leader within your company.

Whatever system works for you, there must be something in place. It also demonstrates that you’re a professional company to potential candidates.

And, when in doubt, consult your CPA or attorney so that you know the information you are handing out is legitimate.

As a business owner, there is already a great demand for your attention. Making sure you address these Human Resource challenges properly could be one of the best decisions you make for your business.
31Mar
Part of a recruiter’s responsibility is to manage their candidate’s expectations and provide the employer with the best fit. These factors include the right experience, skillset, and mindset to match the company’s culture.
The following blog is to help employers better understand how we can best work together for the absolute best outcome.
The candidate sent to you just wasn’t your cup of tea. Should you give your recruiter the reason(s)?
YES! A top-notch recruiter will rarely be off-the-mark when they send you their candidate’s shortlist.

Both the recruiter and candidate have traveled an intense path to get to this point; explaining why it’s a “no” in further detail will go a long way to help both the recruiter and candidate to have more success in the future.

If the candidate was late, appeared frumpled, or didn’t smell fresh, was rude or unprepared, those are legitimate reasons, and if working with an experienced recruiter, it should RARELY happen.

The recruiter spends hours working with the candidate to get a true sense of their demeanor as their reputation depends on your satisfaction.

There are also instances where it may not be about the candidate’s skills or experience but something that rubbed you the wrong way. We’ve heard it all:
  • Did the candidate show up far too early and caused a mild interruption while your staff tried to make them comfortable ahead of schedule?
  • Did the candidate abbreviate or mispronounce your name?
  • Did they appear nervous and repeatedly use “um” in between words?
  • Were you having a bad day, and the time you thought you had for the interview was interrupted by a client emergency?

We all have our pet peeves, but the employer is the leader, and your opinion is valued. If one of the above, or similar, went “wrong,” we highly encourage you to be open to what the candidates’ skills and experience can bring to your company.

With open communication, something the recruiter can tackle on your behalf, you can overcome the more minor pet peeves.

Whether it’s something minor or even more severe, we urge you to be honest with the recruiter about your decision. It will help both the recruiter and candidate for future interviews.

There are current trends with other employers that you’re not ready to embrace right now.

Many companies are offering remote opportunities, and it may happen in the future for you, but you’re just not there yet. Be honest about that, and if you can offer a safe environment, we will know that’s a deal-breaker if we have a candidate that is only seeking to work from home.

Let us know if the door is slightly open for that scenario should we find the perfect fit to decide based on the individual.

If you are looking for someone who doesn’t have one foot out the door at 5 pm, please let us know that. We may have the perfect candidate, but he/she may have personal obligations that require them to be home at a specific time. There are many ways to compromise so that it’s a win-win.

The more we know upfront, the better we can serve your needs. An experienced recruiter with years of experience under their belt can be a sounding board to walk through some of the unknowns.

There may be something holding you back simply because you “don’t know what you don’t know.” Be open, as a recruiter’s goal should always be to find you the best long-term fit.

Exclusive Relationship, or Not?
Recruiters will tell you the exclusive relationship is the best scenario, and they’re right. However, if they are inexperienced or not proactive, it’s a lousy situation for the employer. A qualified recruiter will request an exclusive agreement because they will invest what is needed to:
  • Reach out to the candidates who they know would fit the bill.
  • Make those calls to the passive job seekers with who they’ve developed a confidential relationship. These are the most difficult to reach because they are not openly looking as they are interested in a change but currently in a position.
  • Once they identify the candidates, they will go through all the vetting stages to ensure only those who indeed would be a good fit for your company make the “hot” list.
It’s not to say they wouldn’t implement the above steps if you did not agree on an exclusive relationship. Still, it’s easier to bring one of their highly-qualified and currently employed applicant to the surface if it’s a more exclusive nature.
17Mar
When ready to hire for a critical role in your company, do you clearly understand what you require when filling the position?

Before you begin, take a step back and determine what the role will entail, and start drafting one of the most important aspects – a clear job description.

Unfortunately, many hiring managers understand what they’re looking for but haven’t properly put it in writing to share with the person, or recruiting firm, who will assist with the job search.

This part of the process is essential. It could be the difference between employing the right person for the position or someone who, on the surface, looks like a proper fit but, without a clear description of their duties, does not possess the skills and mindset to be the right candidate.

Writing the job description is one of the most critical aspects of the hiring process. Poor hiring decisions can quickly impact your company’s long-term health, which is why it’s necessary to set your job search up for success from the beginning.

Elements of a Good Job Description

In addition to the daily duties, you want to include what you expect the right candidate to accomplish, so they have a proper understanding of that position’s goals. To be competitive, you will need to perform the research to have accurate job details and attract qualified candidates.

If the ability to write a good job description is not your forte, take advantage of a qualified staffing solutions firm’s services as they understand market trends and what makes sense to skilled candidates.
Your job description should include the following specifics to help weed out unqualified candidates:
  • Job Title
  • Description to include daily activities and responsibilities
  • Desired skillset
  • Required level of experience and education
  • The physical location of the position and if it’s remote, include details such as what that would look like (i.e., fully remote or a combination of physical/remote)
  • The expected amount of time needed to dedicate to the position. Is it full-time, part-time, or flexible as long as the work is complete and up to company standards?
  • The description of the overall company culture (i.e., more structured or more casual based on the type of work involved
  • The salary range and any benefits
  • Summary of your ideal candidate. This step further narrows down the applicants as it provides insight into your company.
Accuracy is Essential

If your job description is inaccurate or too vague, this could cost you time and money and leave you frustrated, especially when you need to fill the position swiftly.

On that note, expediting the process too quickly could negatively affect the process as the adage “Hire slow, fire fast” is a huge factor in getting it right the first time.

You will also be inundated with unqualified applicants if your details are not precise. The application process is already overwhelming as you need to comb through resumes and cover letters, which can be highly time-consuming.

If you’re like most, with a busy schedule, this may be the time you consider working with a staffing solutions firm that will remove all of the upfront legwork from your plate.

Help a Recruiter to Better Serve You

If you work with a staffing solutions firm, a poor job description can considerably slow down the process. A qualified firm will have the goal of making the hiring process much less stressful. Allow them to manage all of the upfront details.

They will provide you with only qualified applicants who meet the qualifications you require and who will complement your company’s culture.

As mentioned earlier, the right recruiting firm will help take your job description to the next level as they understand the terminology and what best attracts the right people for the position.

Valuable Tip to Help Lay the Road Map

Do you have someone in your company who fits the profile of your next desired hire? We encourage you to talk about this with your recruiter as he/she will be able to draw from that description and incorporate it into a good job description.

In summary, the goal is to lay the foundation of your search with a job description that will clearly define your next hire’s expectations. Simultaneously, it should provide enough information to attract the best person to add to your growing team and help your company succeed.