How to Hire Better as a Small Business Owner

By: First Union

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How to Hire Better as a Small Business Owner

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As a small business owner, you probably don’t have a giant HR department to manage your hiring. You’re probably doing it yourself and juggling it with a hundred other tasks.

As tempting as it can be to hire the first person who applies, you need to take a practical approach. Let’s look at some tips on how to hire better as a small business owner.

Create a Clear Job Description

You may know in your head who you’re looking for, but how will applicants know what you want? A good job description involves more than just bullet points of relevant skills. It should be a thorough explanation of the position and who would be a good fit.

Potential employees should know about your company culture and what you offer. You may not be able to offer the highest salary – what intangible benefits set your business apart? What characteristics do you want from employees in return?

Don’t Rush the Process

Hiring the first person who seems somewhat qualified can blow up in your face a dozen different ways. They might lack motivation or professionalism. They could scare away potential customers. They could frustrate other employees. Or they could quit and require you to hire somebody else.

Taking the time to find the right employee the first time around can pay off big time. Look for the person who seems like they will be the best fit for the long-term. That’s a different approach to hiring compared to just finding somebody who’ll work for now.

Assume the Best Candidates Are Wanted Elsewhere

The best job candidates may be considering offers from other employers. As much as you want to find the best employee, you have to present yourself as the best employer.

What can you offer in terms of benefits, workplace environment, or the opportunity for growth? What are your candidates looking for in a job? What are their future goals and current needs?

Going out of your way to finding the best candidate is worthless if you can’t convince them to work for you. Promote your business to your candidates as much as they’re promoting themselves to you.

Focus on Retaining Current Employees

The best hiring practices in the world won’t mean much if you can’t keep your current employees happy. Here’s why.

First of all, the more turnover you have, the more hiring you will have to do. That’s no fun.

Beyond that, if you have high turnover rates, there are fewer experienced people to train new hires. That can lead to new hires getting improper training, getting frustrated, and quitting themselves. A high turnover rate feeds itself, which can make it a hard cycle to stop.

What can you do to keep your current employees happy? Ask them. In a genuine fashion, even if it’s through an anonymous survey, ask about their job satisfaction. Their answers might surprise you.

If something simple like free coffee or snacks increased employee satisfaction and decreased turnover, it would pay off. Happy employees stick around and mean less hiring.

Use Your Website and Social Media

Many job seekers will go directly to your website or use social media to find out if you’re hiring. As much as possible, keep these sources current and up-to-date.

It’s also handy for people to apply for jobs directly through your website. Don’t rely on talent-recruiting sites or Craigslist ads to find quality employees. You can even use social media to direct people to your website to apply.

Ask for Referrals

If you already have employees, ask if they know anybody who might be interested in joining the team. Your best employees may know people in similar industries who would make great additions to your team.

This tactic may work better in some industries than others. Receptionists may not interact with many other receptionists. However, bartenders may know dozens of other bartenders.

Beyond just asking for referrals, reward employees for referrals that lead to hires. It never hurts to have your own employees out looking for new hires for your business.

Plan Your Interviews

An interview should be more than just asking about their skills and education.

First, you want to find out more about their personality, work ethic, and “soft skills” like communication. Will they fit into your company culture? How do they problem-solve? Are they interested in sticking around long-term?

Beyond interviewing candidates, you should allow them to ask you questions, too. They need to be certain they’ll be happy at your company. Keep in mind that they may be considering other prospects.

Don’t count on coming up with all the right questions on the spot. Plan your interviews ahead of time, so you get all the information you need and have answers to potential questions.

Have a Thorough Onboarding Process

Employees who go through a thorough onboarding process are more likely to stay at a company for more than 3 years. You can’t just throw somebody into a position with minimal direction and expect great results.

Set up new employees with mentors when possible. Check-in with them regularly. Ask them what their goals are. Be certain they understand what you expect from them.

Need Help Paying for a New Employee?

Taking the leap into hiring a new employee can be scary for a small business. If you need a new employee to expand, but can’t afford to pay them yet, a business loan could help.

That’s where our funding professionals at First Union Lending come in. With 9 different business loan types available, you’re sure to find the right one to hire your next employee.

Applying for a business loan with First Union won’t affect your credit. You could even get money as soon as the same day.

Call 863-825-5626 or click here now to speak to our lending specialist. They’ll help you decide on and apply for just the right business loan. Start the process of hiring a new employee knowing you have the funds to pay them.

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