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Recruiting new team members can be a very time consuming and costly affair.  If you get it wrong, it will cost you time and money to repeat the process all over again, not to mention the opportunity cost of not having a role filled.

We have 10 top tips that will lead to an efficient and effective recruiting process, giving you the best opportunity to recruit a great long term team member.

  1. Prepare a job description and scope of duties for the position to be recruited for.  Where possible identify the key performance indicators that should be achieved by the new team member once they have the tools and resources on the job.
  2. Determine to whom will they report and consult the direct manager for input on key skills and experience that would likely position the new recruit for success in the role.
  3. Identify the personal qualities that an applicant should possess to be successful both in the role and in the organisation.  Ideally, you will measure the applicant against your organisation's values and vision to get a good cultural fit.
  4. Give some thought to what a prospective candidate will consider attractive in taking this role with your organisation.  In order to attract the highest calibre of talent, you should be able to answer their unspoken question … wiifm – what's in it for me?  Don't be fooled into thinking this is all financial package based, it can include professional development, cross-training, business management exposure, potential for small team leadership, workplace flexibility, cohesive collaborative workplace, vision and opportunity for career progression, this list can be quite extensive.  Before you start the process have clarity on what your organisation's unique selling proposition is.  The market for quality candidates is very competitive.
  5. Determine the budget you have to financially reward the new recruit.  This can include a salary or wage, bonus incentives (especially if the role can directly deliver increased revenue or cost savings), car in the package, car allowance, external training reimbursement, ability to buy additional leave or flexibility of hours
  6. Negotiate the package with the successful candidate so that it meets their high priority areas, ie it is a waste to include a packaged car for a candidate that has bought their dream car, when it would be more attractive to them to receive a car allowance.  If the preferred candidate is completing tertiary or post graduate studies, offering a lower base but including 10 days of study leave p.a. might be a great way of securing them without a high outlay, with future reviews possible once performance is established.
  7. Set expectations up front about expected work hours and participation in team social activities to identify any mis-fits with organisational culture early in the candidate review process.
  8. Prepare for the interview process, have a reference document with key areas to question each candidate on so you have a consistent record for comparison.  Make notes immediately following the interview on your impression, whether they have the right skills and background, if they will fit culturally in the organisation, if they have longer term potential for career progression.  If you are doing more than 5 interviews, make other 'reminder' notes that will help you to recall their face and other subtle interview details.
  9. Involve others from the organisation in the final selection process, these could be future peers.  Engaging them in the interview process demonstrates you value their opinion, reduces the perception of new recruit being a threat and gives existing valued staff some buy-in and commits them to help the new recruit settle in and be successful.  Also be sure to do a thorough check of the references the candidate has provided at this stage, be alert to inconsistencies from what the candidate has said, don't ask leading questions and follow up any concerns that arise from these discussions.
  10. When the successful candidate has been selected, advise them personally (in person or via phone call) detailing the remuneration that is being proposed then document it in the written offer of employment to be sent out within 1-5 days after offer.

Once your new recruit commences, be sure to be prepared for them, notify all existing staff of their start date, their role and have a detailed induction program, with multiple people within the organisation prepared to contribute knowledge, networks and friendly faces to help them settle in so they can become productive.   Regular weekly meetings with their direct manager and also contact with the business owner in the first 3 months is crucial to impart knowledge and provide much needed direction to ensure a successful assimilation into the organisation.

Availio has been supporting SME business owners to successfully recruit quality staff for over 10 years.  If your track record is in need of improvement, try these tips or call Kelly Langdon on 07 3218 3900.