A business is only as good as its employees. That is why it is essential for green industry business owners to hire people who will not only do their job well, but are aligned with the company’s vision and values.
Employer Interview Tips and Best Practices
A business owner can generally determine the right candidates through an interview process. Here are 6 tips for a more productive employer interview process.
1. Identify Vacancy and Evaluate Need. What position(s) do you need to fill? Will service to customers, external or internal, be diminished if you do not hire another employee? Is it more cost effective to give your current employees overtime pay? What is your work load for foreseeable future?
These questions will help a business owner evaluate the costs associated with bringing on and training a new employee versus keeping the current number of employees and asking them to possibly do more.
2. Review Job Description. Review the job description to be sure that it correctly describes the duties, responsibilities and requirements of the available position. A potential candidate should know what is expected of them before they apply for the job. A business owner will be able to gauge an applicant’s experience against those clearly-defined duties and responsibilities so each applicant is judged objectively.
Identify skills or experience that are required or ones that you prefer a candidate to have. You will want to compare those skills or experiences against those that applicants put in their applications or resumes.
3. Develop Recruitment Plan. How long will an ad run? Where will it be placed? Develop a plan in order to recruit the right people for the position you want to fill. There are a variety of resources, online and offline, for job recruitment. These include: internet job boards; social media; print advertisement; job fairs; and word of mouth.
- Internet Job Boards: there are variety of job boards, such as monster.com, careerbuilder.com and indeed.com, even Craigslist, just to name a few.
- Social Media: Facebook offers business pages to add a Jobs tab to their side bar menu. You can publish the job description and details so interested candidates can apply through the Facebook platform.
- Print Advertisement: Many newspapers still have job ads and some may also post your ad on their website.
- Job Fairs: High schools, trade schools, community colleges and other local agencies may have job fairs where businesses can talk about available positions, vision, values, and more, to potential applicants.
- Word of Mouth. Let your employees know that you want to hire additional employees. They may know someone who would be a good candidate and offer a good referral. Since they know the company and the job, they can also give first-hand information about their experience.
4. Review Applicants and Develop a Short List. As you receive applications, they should be reviewed against the list of required and preferred skills and experiences from the job description. Sort the applications based on those that meet the job description criteria and those that don’t. In some cases, there may be applications that are in a grey area. An applicant may have some skills or experiences that are similar to those in the job description, but not exact.
Schedule a phone interview to screen the applicants and narrow down the list of candidates who will move on to a face-to-face interview.The phone interview is generally short, 15 to 30 minutes, but the interviewer should prepare for it as if he or she is conducting an in-person interview to get the most information and the best results.
In order to get as much information from the interviewee as possible, you need to prepare for the in-person interview in advance. During an in-person interview, an interviewer will have the opportunity to identify any red flags or problems with applicant. The interviewer will also be able to gauge body language and other non-verbal cues – positive or negative – that could not be seen during the phone interview. Depending on the position, an applicant may go through a second round of interviews.
5. Select Hire. The interviewer should do reference checks to ensure that the final group of applicants can do what they claim they can do.
Human resource managers may only be able to give basic information about a former employee, but other personal and business references may be more open about the applicant. Try to ask open-ended questions in order to get the reference talking about the applicant. Some questions you might want to ask include:
- How do you know the applicant?
- How long did you work together?
- Could you describe the applicant’s day-to-day responsibilities?
- Why should we hire the applicant?
6. Finalize Recruitment. Once you have decided on the final candidate, it’s time to make an offer. You will likely have discussed compensation and other benefits with the applicant during an earlier interview. Now is the time to make that offer official. Provide the candidate with compensation and benefits information as well as your preference for their start date.
How Spring-Green Can Help
The Operations Team at Spring-Green understands that one of the hardest parts of owning a green industry business is hiring, training, and retaining the right employees. When you become a strategic partner, our team of experts will not only help you grow your existing customer base, but they can help you plan and forecast staffing needs. Learning what has worked from other franchise owners is very helpful as well.
“It’s a guiding hand,” Spring-Green franchise owner Frank Garrett notes. “Guiding me in the right direction and helping me out. The support staff they have is pretty amazing.”
“We help business owners recruit and hire the right people to work in their business. We also discuss issues such as employee retention, payment options and training employees. We assist with help wanted ads, Craigslist, Indeed postings, etc.,” says Gary Brown, one of Spring-Green’s business consultants.
Spring-Green can help you grow and diversify with our 40 years of experience and our proven expertise in business development. Learn more about how Spring-Green can expand your lawn care, landscape and pest control services. Call 1-800-777-8608 or visit us at www.growmygreenindustrybusiness.com