Sunday, January 10, 2016

Your 2016 Small Business Hiring Checklist ~ What You Need to Do Now

Hiring Tips for 2016


It is the start of another year, and you have worked hard to make your small business a success.  You may have increased your client base or are contemplating expanding your products or services.


The potential for increased workload has you thinking about how you will handle the volume.  


Now is the time when you should plan for possible new hires. That may be full time hires or even part-time or temporary hires.


Each type of hire has their own set of pros and cons.  


Learn more in “Is Your Company Ready to Hire? 10 Tips on When & How to Do it Right!”.



But no matter which type of hire you choose, pre-planning makes sense.  And the time is Now to get Your Small Business Ready.


This Small Business Hiring Checklist will help.



Get Your Small Business Ready to Hire with this Checklist!  “Tweet This”



Your #SmallBizHiring Checklist




  • Develop a Hiring Strategy

Your hiring strategy should include criteria that determines when and how to hire and your company’s goals.

For example, you can set hiring parameters such as, “I will hire when my workload or that of my employees increases 5-10%”, or “I will look internally for promotions, then replace at the entry level”.

Whatever you choose, it is important to really think about what will work for you and your company.

Being proactive and creating your hiring strategy long before you really need it is key.  

Putting it off is risky.  Not only will you have to scramble to get one in place under pressure, but you will most likely be adding to your strained workload or that of your existing employees.




  • Write the Perfect Job Descriptions

Taking the time to write the best job descriptions for your small business makes sense.  And once again, it is best to start this long before you need to hire. 

When done right, a good job description will not only help you hire the best candidate, it will also help promote your company brand.  

Your job descriptions help you hire by being specific about the skills and experience you need for your positions.  It will also help any potential job seekers know exactly what will be expected of them.

In addition, by using key words and phrases, you will be able to convey your working atmosphere and company culture.  Both are an important part of your Small Business Brand. 

You can find out more in Part 1 and Part 2 of my series, “Job Descriptions ~ How to Write One and Why it is Important to Do it Right!”. 




  • Make Your Small Business Attractive to Job Seekers

As a small business, you will be competing for top talent not only with other small businesses, but also with big business.  In order to attract the best hire, you should focus on what makes your company unique.

Don’t fall into the trap of trying to compete directly with what larger businesses can offer.

Instead, focus on creating the right company culture.  Develop ways to ensure talent is rewarded.  Keep in mind what employees really want, and find a way to meet their needs.  Take into consideration what is really relevant to their lives.

And salary is only a part of it.  Consider offering flexibility that addresses their personal needs, tangible rewards for good work, and even possible work from home opportunities.   

Remember, “Small Businesses get it wrong.  Many think that because they are small, they have less to offer their new hires than the big companies.  Because of this, they often settle for what they can get.

Even job seekers can fall into this trap.  Most often their goal is to work for a large company, often without even considering working for a small business.   They can’t see the benefits that a small business can bring to their level of experience and confidence.

It is time to change that mindset.”

Read more ways to set your small business apart in “4 Reasons Why Job Seekers will Want to Work for Your Small Business”!




Small Business Hiring Tips


  • Ensure Your Hiring Procedures are Compliant

Before you hire, you will also need to address issues that govern the hiring process.  There are local, state, and federal legislation you will have to consider.  In addition, EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) guidelines must be addressed.

A big part of this concerns your applications and applicant’s rights.




  • Update Your Applications

Your application, both paper and online, is most often one of the first introductions a job seeker has to your company and your open position (after your “help wanted” posting).

It is important that it is clear and concise.  Your application should request basic personal identification and contact information.  It should also ask for information related directly to the job you want to fill.

What it should not contain is any question concerning your applicant’s possible past criminal history.

This is where “Ban the Box” comes in.  

Many states and localities have passed legislation that prohibits you from asking your applicants about any criminal history early on in the hiring process (with many more sure to do so in the future).  

Continuing to include this question on your application opens you up to potential EEOC lawsuits.

You can discover more about “Ban the Box” in “Don’t Roll the Dice ~ Why You Need to ‘Ban the Box’ Now!”.





  • Know Your Applicant’s Rights

Your job applicants have rights when it comes to the employment background check.  It starts with you having to fully inform your applicant that a background check will be done, only proceeding after obtaining a signed release from your applicant, and informing your applicant, in writing, of their rights concerning that background check. 

You can find out more about these rights in “Summary of Your Rights” via the Small Business Association. (*Source 1)




  • Update Your Release and Disclosure Forms

According to the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act), you must inform applicants that an employment background check will be done during the hiring process.  This disclosure must be given in writing and it must be in a “stand alone” document.  This means it cannot be contained within your application or background check release form.

Not complying with this requirement can lead to unwanted attention from the EEOC.  Read “Beware of Background Check Disclosure Risks” to find out more. (*Source 2)




  • Hire a Good Screening Company

To keep up with these hiring and compliance issues, you should consider hiring a good screening company to help.  Choose one that will work with you, as a partner, to keep you up-to-date with ever-changing hiring regulations and that will focus on your specific needs.  

What a Background Check Company can Do For You


Read more about why hiring an outside screening company is good for your small business in “5 Smart Reasons to Outsource Your Background Checks”.



Following this checklist will help get your Small Business ready to hire.  And the time to start is NOW!


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*Source 1: Summary of Your Rights Under the FCRA
*Source 2: Background Check Disclosure Risks

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