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Growing Fast but Smart: 6 Hiring Tips for Small Business Owners

If you were the head of a large enterprise, hiring new staff would probably less of a headache. You would have staff who is well-versed in employment law, recruiting practices, researching candidates, and conducting interviews. These staff members would be able to quickly review all CV, conduct phone screens, and even first interviews. Your role would be to conduct final interviewers, or even to step out of the process entirely, leaving the final hiring decisions to department managers. Unfortunately, as a small business owner, these duties fall solely in your lap.

6 Hiring Tips for Small Business Owners

Things can be especially overwhelming if you are hiring your first employee, or first set of employees. Fortunately, there are a few tips that you can use when you first begin to navigate the hiring process. Hopefully this will make things a bit less daunting.

  1. Prepare a Set of Appropriate and Relevant Interview Questions

It may be tempting to keep things informal by conducting interviews as a casual, conversational, getting to know you session, but this is only asking for trouble. It’s too easy to miss key points if you do not have a list of questions that you plan to ask.

In addition to this, writing out your questions before hand gives you a chance to make sure that you are not asking anything that could get you into trouble. If an interview happens to go too far off topic, you can also use your list of questions to get both yourself and your interviewee back on track.

  1. Re-Read the CV of Any Client You Have Called Back for a Second or Third Interview

You may interview more than a dozen possible hires before you create your short list of callbacks. There’s no possible way to keep track of the relevant information about each of them.

Before you a carry out a second or third interview, take a few minutes to remind yourself of each person’s education, experience, and skills by reading over their resume one last time. You’ll be better prepared and you won’t risk embarrassing yourself by asking irrelevant questions.

  1. Follow Up with All Interviewees

As a matter of personal courtesy, be sure to follow up with everybody that you interviewed, even if it is to express your regrets. Even if they aren’t getting the job, the folks you interviewed will appreciate any feedback that you give them, and simply knowing that they can continue their job search.

If you develop a reputation as an employer who does not let interviewee know that they are no longer being considered, you will likely lose word of mouth references that can be so important when filling new positions.

  1. Value Your Gut Instincts

Hiring a new employee is more involved than simply matching skills, education, and experience with your requirements. You want to hire a person who fits into your little organization and is trustworthy and reliable. You want to work with somebody who is going to thrive in your work environment, get along with others, and demonstrate the passion and hard work that is required when working for a small business.

If you suspect that a potential employee won’t fit into your team, the best thing you can do for all involved is to move on to a candidate is a better fit.

  1. Use Networking in Addition to Posting Positions for Hire

Get word out to your online and offline contacts that you are hiring. You may be very surprised at how quickly candidates come your way via referrals from friends and business contacts. Don’t be afraid to mention that you have openings on social media pages either.

The more avenues you take when reaching out to new hires, the more likely you will be to fill any openings quickly. In fact, many younger job seekers will look for jobs via social media sites more often than they will traditional job sites.

  1. Be Clear and Detailed in Your Job Postings

If you have requirements about which you have no flexibility, make this clear when you write the post advertising your job. In addition to this, if you have specific instructions about how you wish to be contacted, or the format in which you would like to receive the job seekers’ CV, this should also be explicitly stated in the job posting.

Keep in mind that the more clear you are, the less likely you will have to spend time sifting through applicants of candidates who do not meet your requirements. Before you send your job posting off to be published, read it over and over from the perspective of a job seeker. Then, ask yourself if more clarity is in order. If you have a friend or acquaintance that is familiar with all of this, you might see if they will take a look at your job posting for you.

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