Your biggest asset (and liability for that matter) is your staff. They can launch your business to heights you would have never thought possible or burn it to the ground if you’re not careful. The best thing you can do for your company is to attract stellar talent. However, it’s easier said than done. So, how does a business hire the best employees?
Know your target market
Just like with attracting your ideal customers, you need to know what qualities your ideal employees possess. If you are looking for an extroverted friendly sales staff, what would attract them to apply for your business? Would you need to have a ping-pong table in the break room for them to blow off some steam during lunch? Would you need to have an attractive commission tier to reward their work? Create an environment that attracts the best talent, and they will come to you.
The right candidate
This applies to both technical skills and personality traits. However, be sure you are flexible. Your perfect candidate does not exist because people are not perfect. So, when looking at resumes make sure they have the most important qualities and train them on the rest. For example, if you are hiring for a sales position make sure they are friendly but persistent because that is the type of person who will be the most successful. If they don’t understand the software or the computer system, train them on those aspects since they already bring in a skill set for success.
References are a great thing to have, but it’s important to specify professional references. Someone like a former co-worker or supervisor. You want to get a feel for their reputation on a professional scale. When you call the former employer to confirm employment, you won’t get much information from the HR person because legally they can’t provide much or they risk a lawsuit. The only information the HR department can give is confirmation that they did work there and if they would hire that person again. If the HR department says they would not rehire that applicant, it can be a red flag.
Background checks can uncover a lot about a potential candidate. If they have bad credit because they didn’t pay their bills that can show a lack of responsibility. Would they be responsible for your business? Or would other co-workers be carrying more weight because of this person? If they have a criminal record for theft, do you want this person near your money? Background checks can help you avoid a bad hire.
This one is critical. Hiring an employee who is not a good fit can cause friction and ultimately turnover among your good employees. You may want to have several different people interview each potential new hire. That way you can get a well-rounded perspective of the person. One person may be unintentionally overlooking a trait that could be damaging to your business.
Experience is essential, but it should not trump cultural fit when determining who to hire. People will quit because of bad bosses and employees even if the job itself is great. If you have narrowed down your list of candidates to a small pool of people, go with the one that will enhance and fit into your culture. You can train them if they lack experience.
These days the average employee changes jobs more frequently than previous generations. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. Provide opportunities for your employees to move up or laterally into a different department if they wish. If the ladder only goes up one way you are going to lose good employees. If your company only has one path you will lose the talent you currently have and turn off potential great hires.
Balance technology with real problems
It may be feasible for an organization to use HR data analytics to reduce the cost of hiring and how long it takes to fill positions. It’s easy to use algorithms to predict what successful candidates will look like in terms of personal data. What companies can’t afford to do is use only software analytics for greater cost savings and not use managers to solve real problems in the workplace.
While technology makes operations more efficient, human problems can abound. Sarah Green Carmichael’s recent post on the Harvard Business Review blog discussed the problem of organizational drag, in which a company’s employees waste time every day. This could resemble meetings that run over and involve more people than required and chains of emails that don’t produce decisions in an efficient manner.
Looking to grow your business but not sure where to start? Do you need to hire new employees but feel overwhelmed by how time-consuming it is? Let us help at Kinsey Management today.