Whether you are a startup business or established business that has been around for 20+ years, finding good employees is always something that can be difficult. Businesses hire specialists that have training in human relations, headhunters, recruiters, and more to help them find the right person. The Society of Human Resources says that it costs around $4,000 and around 42 days to hire an employee (https://www.shrm.org/about-shrm/press-room/press-releases/pages/human-capital-benchmarking-report.aspx). These numbers are with one dedicated person who is only working on hiring. The numbers go up if the person hiring is also wearing other hats, which in a small and mid-sized business is almost always the case. The last thing a small or mid-sized company can afford is loss of funds or time if the wrong person is hired.
Hiring and retaining good employees is such a big issue, Forbes magazine publishes at least 3-5 articles a year about hiring and has human resources as a topic in every issue published. So if hiring good employees is something you struggle with, know you are in good company. In surveying a clients in a variety of fields, we have found that when we ask clients how they find good people these are our answers:
“Trial and error” “Lucky” “Always be hiring” “Networking”
These are all great answers, but there are some things you can do to increase the likelihood of your hiring the right employee for the seat you need to fill. In 2016 Forbes published a great article stating the “7 C’s on How to Find and Hire the Best Employees”. We are using some concepts from that article but expanding on them.
Does this person have the skills you do (or do not) need? Many employers will hire people that have certain skills and not hire on experience. It can be difficult to hrie a “professional” at something because they may have to unlearn certain skills to be the most effective in your company. To determine this, give them early competence checks. If they don’t perform like you need or want, cut ties and move on.
The best question to think about here is why do you fire? By thinking about people you have fired and why you have fired them, you can easily develop a list of traits you want your new hire to have and narrow down those who do and do not meet that.
Will this person follow the rules? Do they have learnability? Your company performs the way it does for a reason and the rules and procedures that are in place are there for a reason. There is always room for improvement, but what you don’t want is someone coming in a trying to reorganize your entire company. The best employee is someone who might have the knowledge of the position but is willing and wanting to learn how your company does business and help do that to the best of their ability.
How long do they say at a job? Gone are the days of staying in one job for your entire career. The average person changes jobs every 5-10 years these days. The number of jobs isn’t important, but the reasons for moving jobs is. If someone is moving jobs because they don’t get along with their employer, that will tell you something. But don’t count someone out just because they move jobs every couple of years, especially if they are yoing. They may have jut not found their niche yet and you amy be it.
What kind of person do you want working for you? Loyal? Integrity? Good work ethic? Know what traits are important to you and develop open ended questions that can help you know if a potential employee has those traits.
Will this person fit in with the culture of your company? You do not want to hire soeone who will not get along with current employees. Or if they have to report to someone, you don’t want a person who doesn’t like authority. So make sure you know what composes your company culture so you know if a potential employee will fit.
This is kind of an obvious one, but make sure the individual understands not just the dollar amount they will make either hourly or salary, but what other things contribute to their compensation? Bonuses, commission, health benefits, etc.
These are in no way meant to be a comprehensive list of what to look for in hiring a good employee, but they are a good start. We at VA on the Spot have experience consulting with businesses hiring and actually managing the hiring process and would love to help your company. Give us a call today!