Businesses are finding it increasingly more difficult to locate, recruit and onboard talented new employees, particularly for high skill positions. Here are 10 recommendations we developed for business owners and executives to help improve the span and success of their searches. On-boarding talent is always a challenge, but implementing the principles set out here can make that task a little less daunting.
1. Develop the Proper Tools to Define the Position and the Requirements
There are 3 essential tools to use when working with businesses to maximize the performance of each position on the org chart.
- The first tool identifies all job responsibilities (what is to be done or functional objectives), their priority level and an estimated span to complete each to help calculate the utilization of that position.
- The second tool lists the sequential “best practice” action steps to complete each job responsibility along with the performance metric and benchmark.
- The third tool is a detailed job description with all requirements that can also be used as an employment contract.
2. Develop all Training and Employee Evaluation Tools Before Attempting to Fill the Position
- Here is an often-made mistake made by businesses looking for new employees: by not having current training programs based on “best practice” job methods the training does not adequately prepare the new employee for success. One popular tool used as both a tutorial and reference is the mind map built from the detailed job methods list. It can significantly reduce the learning span and help maximize performance.
- The Employee Evaluation tool is a highly objective performance evaluation form that has weighted values assigned to each element and can be easily used with an employee bonus incentive program.
- Confirm the business offers a positive work environment with competitive wages and recognition and incentive programs to help reward good work.
3. Design Training Agendas to Include On-Site Auditing of the Best Performing employee and the Poorest Performing Employee
- The use of an audit form developed from the action steps of the job methods list helps assure the new trainee is forced to pay attention to all activity performed to ensure each task was completed correctly. It also allows for identifying operations that are performed but were left out of the job methods list.
- By auditing the best and the worst, a discussion can be had with the trainee to determine the differences and how they impact speed, performance, quality, and
4. Hire New Employees Contract to Permanent
- When you hire someone as a 1099 contract employee with the understanding that if things work out, they will be made a full-time W-2 employee, then after a designated period, the business can trial the capabilities of each prospect and their ability to learn and adapt.
- You can also evaluate the personality of the candidate to determine if they are a good fit for that position or the company.
- Candidates who decide against the contract to perm option may not have the self-confidence needed to make the investment or take the chance.
5. When Posting the Job, Spend Time Prioritizing Each Job Requirement by the Valueit generates and the Span it takes for a Person to Learn it
- This is routinely misrepresented in the job listing causing the most talented candidates to be overlooked for those more experienced in the product, processes, market, industry or a particular software system used by the business.
- Core skills like being a hard worker, getting along with others, adapting to change, the ability to research and quickly learn, effective mentoring skills, extensive business acumen experience, communication and time management skills are just a few.
- By hiring someone who must learn the current market or software allows for a fresh new perspective in each of these areas, and the learning curve is much shorter than one would expect.
- It also reduces the opportunity of hiring someone with excess baggage (poor or dated work habits or job knowledge) and allows for a critical review of how the company is doing things vs. other top competitors in the industry.
6. Develop an Effective Apprenticeship Program(s) for Key Growth Positions
- By hiring graduates from various colleges or technical trade schools and then requiring them to work their way up allows the business to mold the character and skills of the employee better, so they meet company expectations.
- Most of the growth in a company is not in management or high skilled positions so much as in entry-level positions doing the operational work.
- Effective training programs reduce the span to learn, increase performance and allow shared and documented job knowledge and experience to reduce the time it takes an employee to master the skills of that position.
7. Have New Prospects Take a Business Aptitude Test to Identify Strengths and Weaknesses and How to Position Training
- Aptitude tests offered by reputable firms like Profiles International (https://prc.profilesinternational.com) can provide a wealth of information in the summary reports produced after a candidate gets an invitation to take the test online. Tests are even tailored to specific types of positions.
- There is also an interview guide summary that can provide practical interview questions.
- The reports identify areas of weakness and make recommendations on how to build those skills in training.
8. Consider Employee Retention Programs
- Many business owners or executives have never calculated the fully burdened expense of replacing an employee. Investment in programs to satisfy existing employees can not only save money, but it can also reduce quality issues, product shortages, and the stress put on other employees to cover the missing resources.
- Employee bonus incentive programs and employee recognition reward programs can significantly boost morale and improve productivity to cover their costs.
- Communications, clearly defined and documented job responsibilities, methods, and performance requirements also help employees succeed.
9. Use Linkedin.com to Find Candidates for a Wide Variety of Positions
- There is a good selection of training videos on youtube.com or on linkedin.com as well as just browsing the internet that describes a variety of tactics to use the internet to find suitable Most recruiters use Linkedin.com as well.
- Build out the first level connections to also ask for referrals from members in the same industry but not the same geographic territory, so there are no conflicts of interest.
10. Provide Ongoing Training and Development for Employees
- Most employees enjoy continuing to learn and stay current with the industry expectations for their position.
- It also often improves the productivity of the employees
- It is a perk that may make the difference between an employee leaving for more pay.
- It also protects the business from the risk of key employees leaving the company, thus depriving it of their talents since documented job methods provide a recovery vehicle to shorten the replacement span.
No one said finding and retaining the best people for your organization would be a simple process. It will always involve careful planning and hard work. Using the recommendations outlined here should make that hard work considerably easier and more effective.
At Cogent Analytics, we never stop looking for ways to improve your business and neither should you. So, check out some of our other posts for helpful business information: