April 23, 2024
Hire the right people

Step 8

Hire the right people

| 5/9/2022

Many small businesses start out as single-person operations — the owner does everything and is content to keep it that way. But then, for one reason or another, business begins to pick up and all of a sudden that manageable little enterprise you opened a year ago isn’t so easy to handle on your own anymore. You need help, but what kind and how much? Can you afford to grow your business right now? And more to the point, do you even want to?

Here are some pros and cons to consider as you answer these questions and more:

1 - Be sure this is what you really want to do

To succeed in business, you must make cash flow your No. 1 priority. A positive cash flow is a sign that your liquid assets — cash or anything readily convertible to cash — are rising and your business is growing.

2 - Take stock of your actual needs

Do you have enough business to justify adding staff? Will one employee be enough, or do you need more? Are you thinking full-time, part-time or a combination of the two? Regular hours with specific duties or short notice and on-call as needed? Could an in-house gig worker be used to handle miscellaneous tasks over a specified number of days or weeks? What about a freelancer working off-premises to deliver a single assignment or series of projects as needed?

3 - Hire right and efficiently

By developing a written job description of key responsibilities for any position you want to fill, you’ll be better equipped to find the right kind of help quickly, screen applicants efficiently and, later on, evaluate their job performance. When you’re ready to begin looking for job candidates, keep these tips in mind:

  • Ask friends, relatives and business associates for suggestions.
  • Search online using reputable job placement tools such as CareerSource Florida’s Employ Marketplace, and Indeed.
  • Tap into industry association websites.
  • Monitor specialty job boards.
  • Hire a staffing agency.

Make a list of the stand-out applicants and screen them initially by phone. Identify strengths and weaknesses; probe for qualities specific to the job you want to fill, such as leadership skills and work style. Then narrow your choices and invite the candidates who performed best by phone to your workplace for an interview. Hire the one with the skill set you desire and whose temperament best fits your company.

Connecting with Job Candidates in a Changing World

No doubt about it — COVID-19 has changed a lot about the way we do business in America. Take for example online job postings. It’s no longer enough for companies to create generalized job descriptions and simply post them online. Job seekers want more information and greater transparency — not just salary ranges, but real numbers as well as specific details about benefits, actual job titles and location. And perhaps, having left jobs during the pandemic in search of a better work-life balance, many are seeking a different kind of company culture altogether. And they aren’t impressed with buzzwords. Phrases like “we’re looking for a rock star” or “we need someone who will think outside the box” come off as trite and meaningless.

We’re all just now re-surfacing from a surreal experience, so it’s only natural to be a little wary of promises that sound too good to be true. But one thing is for certain: Today’s job seekers want honesty. And in addition to a paycheck, they want to feel like they are part of something bigger than themselves, something they can be proud of and that provides not only a decent income, but a better work-life balance as well. Do your best to provide it.


Be Prepared with the Right Paperwork

First day on the job, make sure every new employee completes three important forms:

  • I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification)
  • W-4 (Employee’s Withholding Allowance Certificate)
  • Florida New Hire Reporting Form (due within 20 days of hire; available at newhire.floridarevenue.com)

Note: Florida law requires that businesses use federal form I-9 (also known as E-Verify) to check the immigration status of their new hires OR keep a three-year record of the documents used by applicants when filling out their I-9 forms.


Tags: Florida Small Business, Getting Started

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