techniques to improve your hiring
old adage says there are three ways to obtain the best employees.
The first is to hire the good ones away from the competition, but
that is expensive as you most likely will be able to lure them away
with money. The second option is to train them to be good employees. This does not take as much money, but it does require
plenty of time and effort. It also requires you, or someone working
for you who knows the necessary techniques, to produce the results
you want and need.
third is to say the Retailer's Prayer ("O God, I hope this
employee works out better than the last one."). While you may
look at any or all three of these options, we suggest you first
reexamine the initial hiring process. From our years of experience
as retailers and working with retailers, we would like to share
with you some best practices. The first is to let you know that
most retailers are always looking for new employees. Not that you
want to fire someone, but always leave the door open for a potential
great employee to introduce himself or herself.
looking for a new employee, many have told us the best "help-wanted"
ad begins with a description of what the person is to do in the
job, rather than first stating the job title or name of the store.
The next key ingredient is having a job description.
does not have to be long or detailed; some of the best we have seen
are no more than a list, numbered in order of importance, one through
ten-a brief description of what the employee is to do.
job description is attached to the application form and is required
reading before the applicant can fill out the form. Some retailers
even require the applicant to sign the job description before filling
out the application. The signature is designed to signify that the
applicant understands the job description and is able to fulfill
it. The next part of the application process is unique to the most
successful. Instead of the owner or manager interviewing the applicant,
two of the best employees are assigned the responsibility of individually
and collectively conducting the interview.
has shown that by having employees conduct the interview, the candidate
is likely to ask more questions and receive answers he or she is
more likely to believe. When the owner or manager conducts the interview,
he is sometimes likely to overlook potential negative factors of
the candidate. This is especially true if the owner or manager is
working hours that would traditionally be covered by the new employee.
benefit of having the best employees conduct the interviews is that
they have shown a strong ability to find candidates who more closely
duplicate the skills of the better employees. The employees conducting
the interview are also looking to find the new employee whom they
will like and want to work with.
you have selected the new employee, the next challenge is in making
sure he or she fits in and stays with the job. If a person is going
to leave a job, he is most likely to do so within the first 90 days.
The other downside of this statistic is knowing your business will
spend 40 to 60 percent of a year's wages before you have
a productive employee. Many successful retailers assign a coach
to the new employee. It is the responsibility of the coach to mentor,
answer questions, and develop a friendship with the new employee.
benefit for the coach is receiving a reward from the employer when
the new employee has successfully completed a six-month job review.
Some of the most popular rewards have been two weekends off with
pay, a week off with pay, or a cash bonus of one week's pay. Of
course, there are retailers who will say this is an expensive price
to pay for a new employee; but after a retailer has gone through
three or four employees within a six-month period in an attempt
to fill one slot on his team, the coach idea may then appear as
quite a deal.
The ideal employee may or may not come walking in your door; but
by utilizing the techniques of these successful retailers, you are
more likely to recognize that person as well as improve the staff
you currently have. With the cost of labor being such a sizeable
percentage of the expenses on your income statement, isn't this
the advantage you want and need to have?