Success in hiring the right people determines how quickly a small business moves from survival mode to growth paths. Business success depends on not only hiring good people, but hiring extremely talented people who are the best for the position and the company.
Here are eight tips for increasing your hiring success — in big or small businesses:
- Define Key Objectives of the Position Make a prioritized list of five key objectives, then determine the skills and experience needed to be successful in the job.
- Create a Thorough Job Description Or at least create an outline of the functions and expectations of this position. Thinking this through helps refine the description and firms up priorities in the hiring decision.
- Use a Broad Base of Sources to Find a Sufficient Number of Prospective Candidates Asking employees, vendors, colleagues, trade associations, educational and alumni groups, advertising in traditional and non-traditional places helps you cast the broadest net. Give yourself plenty of choices to screen, so that you can narrow down the best choices.
- Utilize the Screening Process Take advantage of the screening process to gain valuable data on competitive salaries, intelligence and best practices. Call in only those who pass the first few hurdles when evaluated against your key objectives and skills required screen.
- Use a Structured Interview Process A. Screen B. Inquire C. Evaluate & Investigate D. Trust, but Verify.
- Ask All Applicants a Core of the Same Questions Then ask some custom questions created for the candidates’ particular experience. During the interviews, ask specific experience and accomplishment-related questions and ask for examples. Try to avoid hypothetical questions as most candidates know the right things to do/say. Asking for specific examples gives a better read on what they did and will do in the future.
- Check References, Verify Degrees and Steer Clear of People Who Have Too Many Ready Excuses Unfortunately, in today’s litigious employment climate employers must practice "defensive hiring." Be cautious of people who look too good to be true — as they often are.
- After the Hire, Create a Thorough Orientation for the New Employee Getting the right person off to the best start takes only a little more effort and can reap big rewards. Give progress reports and feedback in the first few days, weeks and months.
No system is fail-safe. But the extra effort in creating the right climate helps to avoid disasters and hire better people almost every time.
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