Doing due diligence when searching for solid employees can result in an exceptional team who can help your business succeed.
By Sandy Blalock • ARA Executive Director
Finding employees often starts, not with a job posting or a help wanted ad, but with making sure people will understand your business. Think about what your business culture has to offer employees because that will be your message. Not sure how to answer that? Ask your employees why they work for you and what they enjoy most about working for you. Your company culture is the answer to the question, “Why would someone want to be part of my team?”
So, before you hang that sign in the window, take a few minutes and craft your business identity. When you’ve done that, be sure to convey that culture in whatever method you choose to find employees for your business.
Some methods that have been successfully used are job board websites, maybe one managed by the state unemployment office. It may seem old-fashioned, but they still are the go-to sources for both employees and businesses. Keep in mind that posting an ad, no matter where, can quickly (hopefully) bring in many responses so I would recommend setting up a separate email account just for this purpose. Also be sure to not list your phone number.
Another more unique way to find employees includes taking a page from your nearby college, tech school or university playbook and organize a career day. This will give potential candidates an opportunity to visit your business, talk with your team and experience your company culture, along with learning about the potential careers your business may offer. If hosting at your facility does not appeal to you then look at ways to partner with other businesses. I have seen many communities organizing career days so jump at the opportunity to be part of one of those programs.
Remember, your local community college or university also often has career centers with dedicated staff to help their students find jobs near graduation time. In many instances, the career center will have its own job board and email distribution list for promoting employment opportunities that might appeal to its alumni. Getting your job included in this resource is a powerful way to reach a large number of individuals quickly and, often, without cost. They may even host an annual career fair.
Another idea might be asking your customers for potential leads. Include a referral form, which includes an area for a name, phone number and/or email address, on the bottom of your receipts.
Look to current employees – maybe post the job listing on your employee bulletin board. They understand your business and culture so take full advantage of this, first and foremost. Not only is there the potential that you have an employee who can fill an opening, but they can also spread the news that their company has job openings.
The best thing about any method you will use to finding employees is that you don’t have to constrain yourself to just one. Try two, three, or all to find out what works best for your business. If posting flyers didn’t bring you viable candidates but you saw some success with Craigslist, then maybe next time start with Craigslist.
Whether you’re trying to find employees or manage the ones you’ve got, it takes organization. And, to conduct a new employee search simply boils down to scheduling. Don’t wait for a free moment that never comes. Find the right tools and carve time out of your busy day to sit down and focus on perfecting your employee search.
Since you will most likely always be looking for new talent, create a “careers” page on your company’s website. Even if you currently don’t need someone in a specific role, it’s a good idea to keep job postings on your site. If someone is interested enough to look up your company and find the job posting, you know they are already one step ahead of the game when it comes to being a player. Plus, it can turn up in the search results if someone is actively looking for jobs online.
Regardless of what channel you use to find employees, always be on the lookout for “great” rather than “experienced.” As a business owner, you may be operating with the belief that experience trumps everything. Unfortunately, I believe many have found this not to be true and may not be the best fit for your business. So, find great people and give them the experience they need to succeed. We as an industry have a lot to offer in the way of careers so let’s all look to hire “great” people and take this industry into the future.
Reach Sandy Blalock at firstname.lastname@example.org. Share your thoughts pertaining to the advancement of professional automotive recycling. Your letter could be published in an upcoming issue.