Tips for Hiring and Retaining Strong Employees

In today’s times, hiring and employee retention are not easy tasks for any company.  Below are a few areas, in which you can focus your time and energy, to increase your companies chances of attracting and retaining strong employees.

Creating a hiring and onboarding plan for my business.
A detailed and structed hiring and onboarding process will help attract potential applicants and engage new employees to your company. These employees will be more involved and efficient with their new position.  According to a BambooHR survey, approximately 34% of new employees quit their job in the first 30 days.  Comments such as “different work than expected” or “not enough training” are common among those leaving their new positions.  A lot of this can be contributed to unorganized and underdeveloped company processes.  Creating the right program will prove that your company is well structed and has thought about new employees’ needs.  Things to consider when creating a hiring and onboarding plan include:

Create a detailed and accurate job description:  An incorrect or unorganized job description can turn potential candidates off to your job right away.  If they cannot understand the job description they will be less likely to apply for the job.  Employees are more likely to leave their position if the tasks differed from what they expected based on the description.
Schedule interviews quickly and be organized during the interview: Scheduling interviews with applicants in a timely manner is extremely important.  Most candidates will not wait to hear back from a company if other opportunities come up more quickly.  Do your research on the interviewee and have detailed questions based on their experience when conducting the interview.  Listen to what the applicant is saying in the interview and make sure you give them time to ask you questions.  Once interviews have been completed, make a decision, and present a job offer quickly as applicants may have multiple job offers pending at any time.
Have a plan for day one: Once an employee starts work, have their manager give a company tour, introduce the team members to the new employee, give the new employee the tools, equipment, and credentials needed to succeed, and go through important company policies and a professional company handbook.  According to the BambooHR study, most new candidates will want to have their manager do these tasks as opposed to someone from HR.
Training: On the job and consistent training is an important factor to new hires. Check-ins and constant reviews within the first few months by their manager will help as well.  Continue to provide training for the new employee for the first few months of employment as a few days of training will not be adequate enough for most positions.  Some companies will even provide a mentor to the new employee that can help with training for the first few months of employment.

Why should I post my job openings on social media?
As a company, you are always looking for the best ways to reach the most qualified job candidates.  One of the best ways to do this is by posting your job openings on social media. According to a recent Glassdoor survey, 79% of job applicants use social media to search for job openings.  There are a few reasons posting your job on social media is important to finding great employees.

First off, posting to social media outlets such as Facebook and LinkedIn will expand your jobs reach tremendously.  The massive user base of these platforms will provide more opportunity to reach applicants, even if they are not actively looking for a new job.  Hoping someone will find your post on Indeed, Monster or other job sites is less effective.  Once an application has been submitted, screening the applicant right on the platform is extremely efficient and allows recruiters to see a more in-depth view of their personality, interest, hobbies, and ambitions.

Reaching these potential candidates on these platforms also is a huge cost savings.  While paid ads on these social sites will reach a greater audience, free posts can still have a huge reach.  Depending on the number of followers you have or shares you get, social media posts can reach up to twice as many eyes as posts on other job sites.  Job sites or paper ads are more expensive, reach fewer potential applicants and sometimes may even require multiple renewals to hire just one candidate.

Finally, posting jobs on these social sites will give your brand more awareness and engagement.  Interested application are more likely to review and like your social site, comment on posts, and recommend your brand.  Having more social media awareness can make your company feel more personal to your audience, other companies, and potential applicants.

How offering a competitive benefits package will help me attract candidates.
Hiring and employee retention is becoming harder and harder and maybe the most difficult part of your job as a business owner, office manager, or HR director.  While there are several aspects of a job that candidates consider when applying for an opening, benefits maybe the most important.  One of the main ways that companies can attract and retain good employees is by offering a competitive benefits package.  By including your competitive benefits package in your job posts, you will stand out over the competition and engage a larger pool of potential applicants.  In the current “great resignation”, employees are quitting at alarming rates due to poor work hours, low pay, feeling underappreciated, and not having benefits.  Employees are looking for new opportunities where they have these things.
Some things to consider when putting together your companies benefit package include your company size, your company budget, your competitors’ benefits, and even what things your employees value.  As a small business, you may even want to start with just a few benefits and add more as your business grows.  Important benefits include:

Salary: make sure you are paying your employees a fair salary for their position.  Do research to see what other companies in your industry are paying employees in similar positions and make sure to offer something similar.  Bonuses may be a great way to supplement employee pay if you can’t afford to pay a higher weekly rate.
Paid time off: vacation time, sick time, paid holidays, personal leave, and family leave all add up to an employees paid time off.  This is also an extremely important factor to potential applicants.  You will be more likely to get candidates to apply for a position if your company advertises a large amount of paid time off (PTO).  Again, do your research to see what the average amount of PTO is for your industry and make sure you are offering a competitive amount of PTO.
Insurance: with the extreme high costs of insurance plans for individuals, many employees are seeking jobs that offer health, dental and vision insurance.  While it may not be feasible to cover the full amount of the monthly premium for each employee, be sure to cover at least a portion of the monthly premium to attract and retain employees.
Retirement plans: not all industries or positions would require you to offer a retirement plan to your employees but it can be another way to differentiate your company from your competitors.  Choosing between a 401(k) or a SIMPLE IRA for your business can be a difficult choice, but if you offer one type of plan for your employees to invest in their future, you are more likely to hire and retain good employees.
Other benefits: some other benefits that companies may offer their employees include, but are not limited to, cell phone plans, gym memberships, commuter reimbursement, hobby allowances, and meal plans.  These types of things are just other benefits that put your company ahead of the competition when an employee is deciding between multiple job offers.

Celebrating and rewarding employees to improve company morale.
Your employees are the engines that drive your machine.  They work hard and strives to do their best.  Their work and efforts should be constantly recognized.  Doing this will reinforce that their work is appreciated and will drive them to continue to put in their best effort.  Sometimes, just a simple “good job on this project” can go a long way to keeping your employees happy and engaged.  Happy and engaged workers will lead to improved work ethic, morale, and motivation.  Having happy employees can even lead them to promote your company by telling their family and friends, posting on social media, and recruiting their connections to apply for new job openings within your company.  Some ways to celebrate and reward them can include:

Shout outs within the company or on social media
Employee of the month awards
Gift cards
Bonuses
Extra PTO hours
Team lunches
Company parties

How about and career sections on your webpage will drive candidates to your company.
Telling your story in your about page on your website will give potential applicants an insight to the mission and vision of your company.  Having good details in this area will allow these potential applicants see if their goals align with the goals of your company.  Using pictures and descriptions of your current employees provides context to your company and can make your business feel more personal.
An easy to navigate career section will allow candidates to easily see job openings, job descriptions, and growth opportunities within your organization.  Displaying salary and benefits on this page can be a good way to attract applicants.  Having a distinct place on your site that allows users to easily apply for jobs or contact hiring managers will lead to a larger number of applications.

Promoting your work culture to attract new candidates.
Building and promoting a strong and fun work culture is a great way to attract and retain great employees.  Posting company updates on social media as well as having employees post, comment, and share about your company on social media can let the world know about your company and why it is a great place to work.  When employees feel engaged about their work, are rewarded, and enjoy their coworkers, they will naturally promote your company outside of their work life.  Great company work culture equals low employee turnover.  Other ways to show candidates or new employees your culture could be allowing team members to take part in the interview process, allowing employees to write blog posts about your company, or taking interviewees on tours of the company and allowing them to meet the team before they are hired.