As a small business, your hiring budget certainly places you at a disadvantage compared to larger companies. However, there are ways to make yourself more attractive to the right candidates. People do care about the kind of work they do, not just the money, and many will go to places that pay less if they offer other kinds of reward. If you’ve been struggling to hire the best for your small business, here are tips.
Institute policies sensitive to the needs of women
The vast majority of businesses value a competitive work culture over sensitivity. Uber got into trouble recently for being slow to act on harassment complaints by women workers, for example.
You could be an exception. Top talent will beat a path to your door when word gets out that your business rolls out the red carpet for women workers. As long as you make sure to deliver on your promises with maternity and paternity leave, and strong policies against harassment, your company should easily attract the best.
Get the word out
Businesses do recognise the need to engage their customer base on social media; it isn’t often that they realize that they need to get the word out about their human resources policies, as well. It’s a good idea to put as much information as possible about your company’s women-friendly policies, on the company website, the Facebook page (both the company’s own and the pages of current employees), blogs and Twitter. It’s even a good idea to make it a policy to accept every speaking engagement possible where you can plug your company’s record with fair treatment of employees. All of this can generate valuable word-of-mouth that is likely to bring good applicants in.
Put as much value online as possible
Your experience running a business gives you valuable niche knowledge that others less experienced than yourself would like to learn about. It can help to document as much of your experience as possible, on a blog, on your Facebook page or on your website. While there are hundreds of websites offering business advice out there, there aren’t many that offer readers blow-by-blow accounts from the trenches, complete with real-life illustrations and examples. If you can find the time to pull out every scrap of practical business knowledge that you learn, you will begin to find a large, interested audience. Many of these people will admire your work enough to want to work for you.
Good workers will give up money and much more to be able to work on projects where they are placed in charge, or ones where their decisions clearly matter. It can have an almost magical effect on your success finding employees to simply put out the word that you are a great delegator. You will find talent approaching you that you would never have otherwise seen, even with more pay.
Use a competent talent recruiting firm
According to The Birmingham Group (see thebirmgroup.com), one of the top advantages of going through a recruiting firm is that you get to pick out of a talent pool put together by someone who’s been at the talent game for very long. When a recruiting firm brings a list of possible hires to you, the names on the list are likely to be candidates, not just applicants.
Hire fresh, inexperienced people
It’s easy to see that hiring experienced hands puts your company at an advantage. Not many entrepreneurs, however, realize that with a little work, hiring inexperienced people can work very well, too. Hiring straight out of college gives you access to workers who still remember their lessons, and who are enthusiastic about making a great impression. More importantly, they are likely to be so enthusiastic about the opportunity, they’d be glad to work on spec. Keep them if you like them, or send them away with a handshake if you don’t.
Finally, count your blessings
You don’t want to be so focused on finding new talent that you end up neglecting to see what you already have. If you can look closely at employees that you currently have and find untapped talent in there somewhere, you should consider an internal promotion to see if it helps. Not only can promoting internally be a tremendous morale booster for everyone else, it’s bound to make your business particularly attractive to future hires. Nothing pleases workers as much as encouraging possibilities for the future.
About the author
Lola Fletcher shares her business management tips and tricks with an online audience through her articles. She started her own business 8 years ago and loves sharing her knowledge with other business owners.