One of the biggest challenges for a business owner, especially in a small organization, is knowing how, when, or if they should recruit extra staff. Hiring new staff is a costly affair, and if you get it wrong, it could be detrimental to your firm. Here’s the lowdown on how to scale your staffing requirements.
When to hire new staff
If you’re a young or small company, then it can be hard to estimate when you should consider hiring more staff. The positive aspect is, the fact that you are thinking of hiring new team members demonstrates business must be prospering and growth is on the cards. But, there are lots of things you need to take into account, and most importantly knowing when to actually take new members on board is one of them.
If you and your staff regularly work overtime in order to get through an increasing workload, then this could indicate you need an extra pair of hands or two. If current staff find they don’t have time to fulfill other tasks that you, or they, would like to, then this also may be a sign that you are understaffed. Similarly, if you’ve taken on more orders recently and your workload has rocketed, then you’ll need more staff to ensure you can provide the same level of customer service and get the work completed on time. If you also find that you lack skills in something or have diversified in another area, then you may need a knowledgeable new staff member who can assist you in this task.
How to plan the positions you need to fill
It’s important to have a clear idea in your mind what type of person you want for the position you have in mind. Make sure you spend time documenting a detailed job description and person specification, so that you are crystal clear what you’ve got to offer and the type of person you require. If you don’t get this bit right, then you run the risk of hiring the wrong candidate, which could prove costly and end up wasting a lot of your precious time. If you know what sort of candidate you are looking for, then this should also help make it easier to search for the right kind of people. Ask yourself questions such as, do you want someone full-time or part-time? Do you want a permanent or temporary member of staff? Are you willing to offer training? If you’re a small business and unsure about taking a risk in employing permanent staff, then recruiting temporary staff or even part-timers can help you to test the water.
Where to find new staff?
You’ll save yourself time and money if you target specific recruitment places on the basis of the candidate you are searching for. For instance, if you need an IT bod, then you could place an advert in an IT industry journal or consult with an IT recruitment agency.
Make the most of any contacts you have, as this often proves to be a cheaper way of finding new staff. Increasingly, people use social networking sites such as LinkedIn to advertise their skills, so utilize these.
Consider going to recruitment fairs at schools or colleges, as a graduate fresh from their studies will often be bursting with motivation to learn new skills and gain experience. Keep hold of any CV’s that you receive from prospective applications, as this shows the candidate has taken the initiative to get in touch and has an interest in your organisation.
Larger organizations may find that employing temporary agency staff is the solution to their employment needs. There are plenty of companies out there who offer complete management services including hiring, supplying, management and invoicing. This kind of service would be ideal for businesses who need a large volume staff quickly, but don’t necessarily have the time to advertise and interview 500+ candidates.
Lauren Roitman is a freelance writer who has been interested in the inner workings of SME’s after working as part of a small team of three for several years. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, cooking and being active.
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