Associates who represent your business are often the focal point of customer interactions. Even when there are employees who work behind the scenes, you want them to have a solid work ethic, positive attitude and clean track record. It can be challenging to sort through multiple applicants. Still, in the long run, any time you invest upfront should pay off with a reliable staff that allows you to delegate assignments and step away occasionally. While there is no fool-proof or sure-fire method that will guarantee you never have reasons for concern, here are six tips you can follow when looking to onboard new personnel.
Check All References
Whether you accept resumes at your place of business, at a job fair or through an online platform, ask for more than one reference. It may be wise to designate the sources you prefer that the person list. For example, you could ask for a current or past co-worker, someone they have known for at least five years or a casual acquaintance with whom they have regular interactions. Each of these represents a different aspect of your applicant. In addition, you might consider conducting a people search as you narrow your list and get a feel for the candidates. Doing so could uncover details that may have been omitted in any paperwork.
Contact Former Employers
Regardless of the reasons someone gives for leaving a previous job, let them know you will be connecting with their former supervisor or boss to ask about their conduct and performance. If someone is uncomfortable with this step, then have a conversation with them about why. There could be a logical reason that you have to reconcile with and determine if it is a game-changer for you. When you do speak with their onetime administrator, ask for honest feedback. Focus on tasks that apply to the role you are looking to fill and be alert for any triggers you might encounter. Preparing a list of questions in advance will allow you to stay on topic.
Reach Out to Educational Institutions
In some instances, it may be appropriate to email or phone a school or college in order to learn more about someone’s initiative and creativity. Much of this depends on the sort of business you run. Fast food or retail establishments might see many teens who are seeking a job for the first time. In this situation, since there is no old manager, it is sensible to inquire at a place that is familiar with the young person. Look beyond a grade point average and find out if they were involved in activities and liked by their peers or teachers. Though you are not looking for someone to win a popularity contest, social skills and conflict resolution are key qualities.
Conduct More Than One Interview
It could be beneficial to hold a series of interviews to weed through your prospects. The initial round could be a panel discussion or a small group setting. This environment may reveal how well an individual interacts with others as well as how they handle the pressure of multiple speakers taking turns. An idea for the next session could be more hands-on and include topics specific to the job description or expectations. Do not forget the value of training the hiring manager or staff member who will be involved in conducting each course to eliminate any bias in the proceedings.
Invite Top Candidates to an Informal Meet and Greet
As you hone in on the final two or three most qualified hopefuls, organize a luncheon or dinner with future colleagues to see if everyone gels together. A thriving workplace should have a positive sense of collaboration and employee morale. Providing an opportunity to get to know one another and learn about outside interests may facilitate the congeniality you desire. When the top candidates come together in a common context, you will be able to make comparisons and observe less structured conversations.
Hire a Personality Expert
Finally, while it may seem unconventional, you can consult a personality expert who specializes in the study of relationships. There are a number of online tests and assessments you can offer or bring a professional into the building to study how well people communicate and connect. Not only is it interesting to learn about behavioral tendencies, but it is also fun to discover what the results uncover.
It is not uncommon to receive hundreds of inquiries for one posted position. By following a few of these suggestions, you can bolster the chances of retaining the next employee of the month.