When I’m mingling and charming and asking questions at networking events, I nearly always hear one of two things:
1. “Rikka, where did you get that awesome haircut?”
2. “How do you actually find the right people to hire?”
If I’m being honest, I hear the latter with a bit more frequency – and there’s a reason.
One in three small businesses have unfilled job openings due to lack of qualified applicants and 43% of small businesses say their growth is impeded due to lack of qualified applicants.
That’s a loss of millions of dollars and huge, unimaginable amounts of stress that small business owners are dealing with. I don’t want that for you! Since I’ve been a recruiter for 10+ years and filled over 400 jobs, I know a thing or two about finding and hiring the right people.
Step 1. Get really clear about the position
I can’t find the right people to hire if I don’t know the ins and outs and nooks and crannies of the job. What are the day-to-day responsibilities? What positions or industries might have parallel positions? I learn about the company culture and what personality type would fit well into the existing team. I learn about the people who’ve been successful in the past – and about the ones who haven’t. (NOTE: Go here, if you need to learn how to write a job description.)
Step 2. Build a Recruiting Plan
My Recruiting Plan helps me get in front of my target audience: those qualified people I’d love to hire. Most small businesses post one or two ads and devotedly hope that a decent candidate applies. We can do better than that!
I use a minimum of 12 sources to publicize jobs – job posting boards, social media, networking, association contacts, direct recruiting, resume databases and more. At the risk of tooting my own horn, this is why I get results when a lot of people don’t.
Want more qualified applicants? Use more sources.
Step 3. Develop recruiting pitches
You’ll have more luck finding the right employee to hire if you put on your Marketing Hat for a minute. What makes this position appealing? Why would someone leave their current position for this? You’ve got to sell the job – particularly when you’re pitching to passive candidates: people who didn’t actively apply for the job.
For example, if I were pitching a Director of Marketing gig to a Marketing Manager, I might send them an email that says:
Hi First Name,
My name is Rikka; I just wanted to reach out to you because I am currently working on a Director of Marketing position for a private medical practice. I found your profile online and based on your experience as a Marketing Manager at a private dental practice. I wanted to reach out to you to see if you might be interested in learning more about our Director of Marketing Role. We are interested in connecting with people who understand the nuances of private practice and understand what a key role marketing plays in a small businesses growth. It seems like you may be ready for Director of Marketing level responsibilities so I just wanted to reach out and see if we could start the conversation.
You can simply reply to this email or give me a call at XXX.XXX.XXXX to discuss this position in more detail.
I look forward to connecting with you!
Step 4. Execute
Post the job, source resumes, and email the qualified candidates. Send out that networking email. This may take a few hours, but once the postings are up and the emails are sent, lean back and wait for responses to roll in.
Step 5. Assess
Now that you’ve got an inbox full of applicants scan those resumes in 10 seconds and set up a system to sort the good from the less-than-amazing. Schedule some phone interviews (yes! always start with phone interviews!) and see if anyone seems promising.
Not seeing a lot of qualified applicants? This will help.
That’s it! Five steps to getting the right applicants through the door.
Like actionable tips like these? Then you will love my Hiring Hacks ebook. It makes a complicated job easy-peasy.
Find this information helpful?
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