How To Write A Good Job Description

A job description communicates your expectations to your employee, evaluates their professional performance, and sets the tone for their employment.  Failure to provide a job description leads to miscommunication and disorganization so it should be one of the first things you have your new employees sign.

How To Write A Job Description

Step One: Start With The Requirements

The first step is to make sure that you understand the job requirements that the employee will be performing.  If this position requires certain certificates or skills, make a list of all of these items.  Be sure to include them in the description.  Also, make a list of the preferred job qualifications. These additional qualifications separate the “meets basic expectations” candidates from the “highly desirable” candidates.

Step Two: Avoid Exaggeration

Exaggerating job description requirements puts you at risk and simultaneously loses you candidates.  You want to have a balance when you provide job descriptions. After all, you both advertise with these and have your selected candidate sign them.   So, you shouldn’t hire a candidate who does not meet your requirements.  Thus, making sure you don’t exaggerate your job description means that you can bring in good candidates.

Many companies do not follow this trend and it can be costly.  First, exaggerating job descriptions scares away many candidates.  So, your pool may be small.  Second, if you hire someone that does not meet your advertised “requirements” and other candidates get word of your decision, it hurts your reputation. Additionally, if candidates suspect you hired the under-qualified candidate for discriminatory reasons, you may have a lawsuit on your hands.  Even if you easily win such a dispute, it is still an expense that you can avoid.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that your rejected candidates will not know who you decided to hire.  In the age of social media, a 30-second linked-in search can quickly reveal your choices.

To avoid this, stick to your requirements and make them absolute.  Then, add your preferences to attract higher-end candidates.  This frees you up to pick and choose ideal traits of candidates and does not prevent qualified people from applying. It also gives you the freedom to select a less “qualified” candidate when our requirements are met, but you happen to have a trait in that candidate that is especially appealing.

Step Three: Include “Position Purpose” Statement

A position purpose statement communicates to the employee the “Why” behind what they do.  Employers often include a generic statement about the role of the job. However, a purpose statement gives value to the position. It allows the employee to understand the true importance of their role. It grows their knowledge and increases the likelihood that they will believe that their job makes a difference. Increasing this, in turn, increases the likelihood that your employee will be motivated to stay with your company.

Step Four: Include Physical Risks and Job Hazards

Many individuals will have a reason that they cannot perform a particular job or may need to request reasonable accommodation.  Being upfront about the risks associated with the job allows candidates to understand what you require.  It also enables them to be selective about the risks they are willing to take for their employment.

For example, you may have a construction position that requires exposure to elements and heavy physical labor.  You may have a lab position that requires exposure to toxic chemicals.  These risks should be communicated so that you do not fail to alert your candidates and employees fully. Many employees will be okay with these risks. However, failure to disclose these risks can be lawsuit risk. It can also be a reason that you end up having high turnover rates.  You may get candidates who are not aware of the risks and leave quickly once they discover the true nature of the job.

Step Five: Signature Lines, Dates, and Official Sign-Offs

This step is standard, but important.  As companies grow, it is common for documents to change an evolve. Often, these new documents will reflect important changes, but then managers will still use the old document.  The official job description should always have a sign-off from a person in leadership. This may be the HR department or the owner if the company is too small to have an HR person on staff.

Additionally, the job description should include the version number and the date that it was created.  Whenever a new job description is signed and put into the employee’s file, someone should do a quick check to make sure that it is a recent and accurate job description.

Happy Thanksgiving

Dear Readers,

Our regularly scheduled blog post is going to be replaced with this Thanksgiving recipe post.  Have a wonderful time with your families and friends!

Look for our regular post next week and enjoy this delicious pumpkin pie drink recipe in the meantime.IMG_20181030_194351

Pumpkin Pie Holiday Drink

3 ounces Pumpkin Pie Coffee Creamer

1 ounce of Rumchata

2 ounces whipped cream Vodka

1 tsp Allspice

Garnish with whipped cream and cinnamon and enjoy!

With Love and Pumpkin Spice,

The Little Fish Team

5 Ways To Avoid Red Flag Candidates

Red flag candidates: these are the candidates that show you before you hire them that they aren’t right for the job.  However, an interviewer may miss these or a candidate may be exceptionally good at interviewing. In short, red flags can be easily missed. Overall, interviewing a candidate is known to be ineffective. According to this study, 81% of new hires do not succeed in their positions. The most utilized method of evaluating candidates today is the job interview.  Candidates are brought in, questioned, and leave in short periods of time.  Companies then repeat this process in a few weeks or months when candidates leave their positions. So, what can you do to improve their retention rate and get to know your candidates? Little Fish has outlined the things that have helped us to discover red flag candidates in our interviews and has led to better success in candidate retention rates.

1. Check Basic Qualifications

You can hire for personality and train for skill, but in an interview you can’t find out much about a person’s real personality.  So, the first thing that is important is making sure that a basic skill-set exists. For example, if you’re hiring someone to be a director of a department, picking someone you like will have nothing to do with whether or not they can perform the basic tasks required of them.  Don’t just look for experience (although that is as plus): look at the pieces of the job that must be performed.  Once you have a pool of people that can perform these tasks, move onto choosing the right personality for the job. Also, recognize the value of translatable skills. Some candidates adapt faster than other candidates. If you fall into the trap of only considering candidates with exact matches of your list of qualifications, you will miss out on candidates that may actually be above average performers. If you have a complex job that includes skills you don’t understand, talk with an expert in that field. If possible, keep them involved so that they can tell you tell you more about the job skills needed. Doing this helps you to truly hire a person that can achieve these tasks.

2. Ask Open-ended Questions

Asking open-ended questions allows you to gauge the candidates response. You can tell if they are 1. Prepared 2. Nervous 3. Prone to over-share 4. Practiced.  Sometimes they will have no answer.  While these are not in themselves indicators of an individual’s personality, they add factors into the person’s puzzle of who they are and who they want you to think they are. Sometimes, these open-ended questions will lead to candidates saying things that disqualify them for the job entirely or make it clear they have no interest in the position.  In actual interviews, Little Fish team members have had candidates say they “just need a job and don’t care where they work.” This kind of response speaks volumes because it immediately shows the candidate doesn’t care about this position.

3. Ask Candidates To Tell A Story

Photo Credit: Bill Smith. Byzantium Books.
No, this isn’t a bed-time story. Red flag candidates will often share a tell by sharing a story about a time they did X.   This is a way to get candidates to share with you a proof of one of their qualities. For example, a candidate informed me that they, “Got along great with everybody.”  Next, I  asked the candidate to tell me about a time they had a conflict and how they managed it.  Their response was a huge red flag. They informed me that they’d “really gotten into it” with a co-worker.  Then, the candidate had gone to the manager, but the manager didn’t address their concerns.  So, then the candidate and the manager, “really got into it.” Finally, the candidate revealed that the manager fired them for fighting with their coworkers. The candidate finished by stating that the manager was just, “out to get me.” This candidate story exemplified poor conflict management skills. This candidate ended up being a red flag candidate that was not hired.  Candidates will often reveal truths that will otherwise remain hidden when they are asked to exemplify their claims.

4. Use Assessment Tests

There are many assessments online that allow you to learn more about your candidate outside of the interview.  It is up to you to decide how to best select these assessments. Sometimes, the most important aspect of a job is a candidate’s personality (such as in a customer service position) other times it is their skills with in-depth thinking and problem solving.  In the first-case, a personality test may be helpful.  In the second case, you may want to give the candidate a problem to solve and ample time to create a theoretical solution. Remember: if you give the wrong test, you may disqualify an excellent candidate. Make sure you consider what you actually need to assess about your candidate.The right assessments provide extra insight into the candidate. If  you want some good candidate assessments check out our list of candidate assessment tests.

5. Get To Know Your Type

startup-593341_1920.jpg If you’ve ever had someone fill this kind of role before that was an all-star player, take some time to consider the traits of this prior (or current) employee. Their success has a cause.  Make a list of traits, skills, and achievements of this employee. Then, look for similar traits in other candidates.  Make sure to observe both hard and soft skills of this employee. Soft skills are extremely important (but often overlooked). The most successful companies type-cast their candidates.  Right down to the schools they come from and the grades that they receive. They make recruiting a systematic process that takes very little internal time and helps them to better target their recruiting dollars towards getting the candidates that are most likely to succeed in these types of roles.  So, collect data on your successes and apply them to improve your recruiting and reduce your pool of red flag candidates.  

The Best Candidate Assessment Tests

A good candidate assessment goes long way in helping you pick the best candidates for your company.  If you’re not sure how to evaluate your candidates, then you’ve come to the right place.  It’s a well known fact that a job interview is not a good indicator of candidate performance.  So, it is important to find additional ways to evaluate your candidate.

As a disclaimer: we receive $0.00 compensation for these mentions.  However, if you choose to purchase any of these items through Amazon, doing so through our affiliate store helps us out. 

Below are the best candidate assessments that we’ve used to date. There are various pricing structures and even free versions. However, using these is only part of the candidate story. Make sure you consider other aspects of your candidate as well, such as their experience, manager references, and any skills that may be unique to the position.

Also, consider the type of position you are hiring for.  If you’re hiring a candidate that needs specific skill-sets, but not a specific personality, you may wan to focus on assessments that are skills-based more than personality assessments.

However, for those situations in which you want an insight into the personality and work-style of your candidate, we’ve got our top picks here.

16 Personalities: Free

This test is a free version of the Meyers Briggs. The test comes with a nicely laid out testing structure. If you just want a birds-eye view of your candidate’s personality, use this. This test is an easy way to get a large scope of your candidates self-image and personal preferences.

However, as with all personality tests, recognize that this test is not all inclusive.  These types of personality tests measure self-perception. They do not necessarily give you a look into how a candidate’s personality effects their working style.

So, if your candidate tests  as an introvert, they may be a fabulous salesperson too.  Some of the best salespeople of all time are introverted. The moral of the story: consider the results, but don’t use them as an end all.  Check  16 Personalities out by clicking on this link. It is also important to recognize that since this test is free, you have no power to get the results without your candidate voluntarily submitting them to you. So, recognize that weakness and prepare for it in advance.

DISC: Paid And Free

You can purchase the DISC assessment from a variety of sources. There are some free versions available as well, but they may not officially be a part of the DISC assessment and may bear its name only. So, if you do a bit of research you may be able to find one that is available for your use, but use with caution.

The DISC test tends to be an in-depth exploration of working styles. It can be excellent for assessing leadership styles.  This assessment looks deeply into how a candidate tends to think and solve problems.  DISC assesses personality too, but does not focus on it.  This helps to fill in the weaknesses of a personality-only candidate assessment.  Additionally, the paid version of the DISC adds the benefit of sending you results automatically. Check out the DISC official website.

Team Roles Test: Free

With a Team Roles Test, you can explore the specific roles in which people tend to fit the best on a team. We have never used a paid version of this test, but some do exist.

The team roles test focuses on working styles, but leaves out personality. This kind of test is especially helpful when looking at working styles as well as the types of roles that a candidate likes to fill. It takes a group oriented approach. This means that the test assesses how candidates tend to work in groups, rather than on their own. This can be especially helpful when adding a candidate to a preexisting team. To learn more about the Team Roles test, try it out for yourself.

Clifton Strengths: Paid

The Clifton Strengths in an in-depth profile of your candidates working styles and preferences. This tests provides around 15 pages of information on your candidate and allows you to read about their best qualities.  You can also request a page that shows every score from highest to lowest.  This has the added benefit of allowing you to know how a candidate will fit into your team overall.

The Strength’s Finder makes team-building easier as well. It helps you define your ideal team and create a good working environment.   By understanding your candidates, you are able to create a good working environment that motivates and inspires your employees.

This assessment is good both for candidate assessment and for employee assessment and team building.  To check it out, you can read more about it on the Gallup Strength’s Finder Website.

Year End Payroll Tasks

The end of the annual year brings a close to payroll for 2018.  Employers should issue W-2 forms and 1095-C forms (if applicable) no later than January 31, 2019.  Closing out the year involves many small tasks to make the start of next year’s payroll a breeze.  Below is a list of important tasks to help employers wrap up the 2018 payroll year:

1. Check Employee Tax Deductions

Reach out to employees and remind them to check their current tax withholding deductions. Afterwards, increase or decrease deductions as needed. Let your employees know, now is the last chance to correct any errors or make last-minute updates.  By the end of the year, there will be nothing more they can do and the employee will have to make corrections with their tax return.

2. Do An Information Audit

Audit your employee records and make sure that everyone’s information is accurate. Check for SSN numbers and updated mailing addresses. Ask your employees to verify that you have the correct social security number in your system.  If anyone has left during the year, try to make sure you have a way to send them their W-2.

If possible, provide employees with the option to receive an electronic W-2. An electronic W-2 delivery streamlines your W-2 delivery process and ensures nobody fails to receive their tax forms. Check your state’s guidelines on specific laws for delivering W-2 forms.

3. Make Sure You Have Updated Federal & State Tax Forms

Make sure you have all your W-9 forms on file for your 1099 independent contractors and W-4 forms for your employees.  While you should be collecting these forms prior to paying your contractors and employees, now is the time to do an audit and make sure you have one for each individual that has performed work for you throughout the year.

Also, double-check your state tax forms. Collect any outstanding state tax forms for all of your contractors and employees. Check your state’s specific guidelines for the full listing of required tax forms.

4.Check Non-Tax Related Deductions & Plans

Check any pensions, 401ks, flexible savings or health savings accounts, healthcare plans, or insurance deductions. Make sure all year-to-date amounts are correct.  If there are errors, make adjustments.

5. Check That Social Security & Medicare Taxes Are Accurate

Check the employer and employee portions of Medicare and Social Security taxes to ensure accuracy.  You should check both the employer portion and employee portion.

The employer portion of medicare is 1.45%  and social security is 6.2% of total employee’s wages.

Additionally, employee percentages should be 1.45% for medicare and 6.2% for social security.

See this article from the IRS on additional details for medicare and social security withholding.

6. Check Employer Unemployment Deposits

Check employer unemployment deposits.  Pay all amounts due for the final quarter.  Additionally, make sure unemployment has not been paid beyond your state’s taxable wage limitation. Check with your states unemployment office for this limitation where applicable.

7. Check For New Rates

Check for any new rates to insurance (unemployment, disability…etc.) where applicable. Make sure to notify your payroll service of the new rates or update the rates as needed.

8. Make Sure Your Payroll Totals Match

For this you want to make sure of the following:

  1. Compare payroll register totals to Form W-3 totals and make sure there are no discrepancies.
  2. Check forms W-2 for the correct state and local tax report totals.
  3. Compare total wages reported for each tax. Make sure any differences are paid or reconciled.
  4. Check reported tax on Forms 941.  Make sure they match total taxes and wages  reported from Form W-3.
  5. Make sure all employee tips are properly recorded and taxed and that all totals match. (If applicable).

9. Update Deductions

Remove any employee taxes and/or taxable blocks that are outdated. Also, update any deductions or garnishments that are not desired for the new year. Also, make sure to document any tax changes.  Store any deduction updates in your employee’s file.

10. Create A Payroll Schedule for 2019

Finally, schedule new year payroll dates, quarter closes, and all processes for 2019.  Plan for any early pays based on holiday changes..etc.  Additionally, make sure that any bonus pays are planned and scheduled in advance.  Release this new schedule to your employees as well as a full listing of paid holidays or scheduled days you will be closed.

Photo Credit:

“The lower-your-taxes button” by bradhoc is licensed under CC by 2.0

Write a value proposition

What is a value proposition?

A value proposition in HR is the key message to employees about why they should want to work for your company. It is a way of attracting the kind of talent that will make your company thrive. It is also the way to focus your strategy more and improve your business.  Remember: the  best employees solve problems and follow your strategic direction and to get them, you need to find them, and keep them.  The best way to do that?  Give your employees what you want.

To give you an example of a value proposition, I’ve pulled a snippet from Deloitte’s careers web page.  While they are by far not the only company with a good value proposition, they are one of my favorite.

Deloitte’s value proposition states:

We seek professionals who see differently, who find opportunity where others don’t, who look within themselves and know that with the right support and team they can impact the world.

This is an excellently targeted message with several key points:

  1. You as the employee make the impact: you are Deloitte
  2. Deloitte wants to hire you if you think differently

These key points are specially designed to attract a certain kind of person, a visionary who wants to make a difference.  Deloitte isn’t looking for people that are ready to accept status quo, they want “A+” players.

If you want good employees, you need to have the right value proposition

Small businesses that want to stand out in the job market must take the time to consider what their value proposition is to employees.  This is more than just the benefits your company offers: it’s the reason that working for your company matters.

When you write a value proposition, you must consider the following questions.
  1. What kinds of skills must your employees have to make your company better?
  2. What are the personality traits that you want in your employees?
  3. How can you attract these kinds of people to your company?
  4. Why would someone want to work for you?
  5. What does your ideal employee value the most in this world?
  6. How will you motivate your employees?
  7. What is your philosophy about employees and how you should treat them?
  8. What will you do if an employee doesn’t meet your expectations?
  9. What can you do to keep an employee like the kind that you are imagining?
  10. How do they spend their days/what is the best way to reach them?
Final words on your value proposition

In general, it is best to keep your value proposition between 2-4 sentences.  Short, sweet, and memorable. You want to communicate your value and convert the employee to applying for your organization, but you also don’t want employees to read a dissertation before applying.  You want to be remembered. Write for impact.

Additionally, you want your value proposition to work well with your overall mission. So make sure you don’t write a value proposition that simply cannot align with your company goals.

Harassment policies and small businesses

2018 was a year that brought to light workplace harassment issues more than ever.  Now, people are aware of workplace harassment. People come forward and report issues. Harassment in the workplace has never been acceptable, but it has often gone ignored by business owners in the past. This can no longer be the case in today’s business environment. As a business owner, you must react quickly to any and all reports.  You must also prevent future incidents in your workplace. In today’s business world, ignoring harassment in your company will result in negative publicity and lawsuits.  Instead, business owners must be willing to proactively protect their employees or face expensive consequences. So far, in 2018 alone:
  • The EEOC filed 66 harassment lawsuits, including 41 that included allegations of sexual harassment. That reflects more than a 50 percent increase in suits challenging sexual harassment over fiscal year 2017.
  • In addition, charges filed with the EEOC alleging sexual harassment increased by more than 12 percent from fiscal year 2017.
  • Overall, the EEOC recovered nearly $70 million for the victims of sexual harassment through litigation and administrative enforcement in FY 2018, up from $47.5 million in FY 2017.
Employers big and small must step forward and make sure that workplace harassment stops.  There is no excuse for a failure to properly train and monitor your workplace for potential predators. The costs to your business goes far beyond lawsuits. Although just one lawsuit could ruin your business, you must consider the costs of reputation, productivity, and employee morale as well. The best thing you can do for your business is to establish clear and specific harassment policies, provide consistent training, and carefully investigate any and all claims. For more resources and assistance, check out our tips on writing policies and procedures. Additionally, make sure you establish a good training program for your employees.  To get started, you can check out the EEOC Training Institute.

Payroll Pros and Cons

Payroll is a vital operation. Most business payrolls account for 30-50% of operating expenses.  While there are many options when it comes to business payroll, there are three major categories to choose from: Payroll Providers, Accountants, and Certified Public Accountants (CPA). Each option comes with its own pros and cons.

Payroll Provider

A payroll provider is a person or company that provides a software for you to run your own payroll in-house.  Usually these companies will have lots of handy automatic tax submissions and calculations as well as bookkeeping features.

Pros: This software is usually great for automating your payroll tasks, tracking your annual payroll, and simplifying the process.  It is also extremely cost-effective. Prices range anywhere from $20-$150 a month for a business of 10 employees or less.

Cons: These softwares are not infallible. Even with this software, someone must run the payroll, check for mistakes, and submit taxes properly. If you’re ignorant when it comes to employment and tax law, then you should hire a trained individual to manage your payroll.   Tax mistakes can cost you thousands later on.

Accountants and Bookkeeping Services

Accountants and bookkeepers are experienced tax professionals. If you know you’re lost when running payroll, one option is to hire a bookkeeper or accountant to run your payroll for you.

Pros: These firms have a reputation to uphold and  a trained staff.  They’re going to catch many mistakes that you will make. Additionally, accountants will be able to do other tax and accounting tasks. This can save you hours of time.  Good accountants save you money because they prevent costly fines for tax mistakes.

Cons: Accountants and bookkeepers are more expensive than a payroll software.  Also, if accountants make a mistake, the liability still falls on you (per the IRS and most state rules). If you get a bad accountant and they intentionally commit fraud, the tax liability still falls on you to correct the mistake and pay any fines.  (Do rest assured though, in cases of fraud, accountants who intentionally made these errors will usually go to jail.)

CPA (Certified Public Accountants)

Pros: A CPA has more education than an accountant or a bookkeeper. They can run your payroll and do all of your taxes. Also, there’s a hidden bonus: liability for tax mistakes fall on the CPA.  Because of their additional qualifications, if a mistake is made, then the liability falls on the CPA and not on your business.  Additionally, a CPA is more knowledgeable of tax law and can help you save a lot of money with tax breaks. Also, if you are in trouble with the IRS or another tax organization, a CPA can go to court for you and talk to the IRS on your behalf.

Cons: These are usually the most expensive options. A CPA has to charge higher prices because of the extra service they provide.  You pay for the experience as well as the security of knowing that the liability is off of your business.

Be careful to check all CPA licenses.  Someone could falsely claim to be a CPA or lose their CPA license.  It is illegal for anyone to claim falsely to be a CPA, but can still happen.  Do your homework before hiring anyone!

Resources to help you make a final decision

To learn more about Payroll Providers, check out our reviews of some of the top 2018 Payroll Providers.  Be aware that not all payroll providers are equal.  If you go this route, do your research and choose the best for your business.

If you’re interested in an accountant, you can help mitigate the risk of getting a bad accountant by searching for one that is registered as an e-file provider with the IRS. The registration processes is highly stringent. This stringent screening process lowers the risk of getting a bad accountant who will mess up your payroll or taxes. Check out the free IRS e-file provider search.

Finally, if you’re interested in checking out a CPA and making sure that they are verifiable, use this free CPA verification website. You can look up CPAs by state and verify they are in good standing and have active licences.

Policies and Procedures Writing Tips

Every employer should take the time to develop good policies and procedures for their business.  Consolidate these policies in the form of a document or handbook.  This provides employees with guidance for their work.  While you can purchase a handbook, you can also write your own. So,  follow these tips for developing a good policies and procedures for your company that will improve your business.


Think about limiting your liabilities.

First, consider ways in which you need to protect your business from negative behaviors and risks.  Prepare for the following risks:  turnover, bad customer service, employee mistakes, product returns, and customer or employee lawsuits.  Consider all the ways in which your business faces these risks.  Come up with a list of these risks.  Use this list to write policies that prevent problems before they occur.

Find ways to inspire good behaviours in your employees.

Make your policies and procedures reflect a positive work culture.  This should include good training, consistent messaging, and employee rewards systems.  You should always consider writing in rewards policies and find ways to inspire good behaviours with your policies and  procedures. These don’t have to be expensive rewards: something as simple as an extra day off a year or a company trip may be value needed to inspire employees with, rather than torment them.

Strive to be simplistic.

Make your policies and procedures clear and concise.  Take the time to consider the limitations that are necessary and recognize that your policies and procedures aren’t meant to be a great work of literature.  They are meant to be a communication tool.  Make your document a way to connect and  help your employees perform their work.

Start with a policy and procedure template

Don’t try to write everything from scratch. This will waste your time. Cut down on your time spent writing and start with a template.  This template provides a baseline for your overall document.

From there, you need to write your policies and procedures carefully.  Also, make sure you write policies that fit with your local state laws and don’t violate any legal requirements.   Carefully edit your document and make it match your business. For example, only includes official policies that directly relate to your operations.  For example, if you’re a service business, writing rules about how to serve food will not be beneficial to your employees.

So, there you have it:  tips for writing good policies and procedures.  If you find that you’d like some extra assistance figuring out what key risks your business faces , contact us . We will schedule a phone call with you for a free consultation and business health check-up.  Then you can better write your own document.  We’re happy to help and want to see you succeed.

Preventing Skilled Labor Turnover

Turnover is a costly issue that affects all industries, but especially skilled labor sectors. There’s a huge gap in the skilled labor market right now and preventing turnover is important.

Plumbers, electricians, roofers, floorers, truck drivers..etc are leaving the field faster than new individuals are entering it. The list of skilled labor fields that are facing a gap has authors like Jeff Cox of CNBC sounding the alarm on the U.S. labor shortage .

There are definite challenges to this gap.  The good news is there’s also key steps to take now that will help reduce turnover.

Begin by focusing your recruiting efforts on rural communities.

In rural communities, a mine of untapped skilled laborers exist. They graduate from trade schools with a sincere desire to make a career out of being an electrician, plumber, or HVAC technician, but then they find a difficult field of dirty work and low pay.   They can’t afford to leave the area in search of work. The solution? Recruit them and provide market leading wages. This will take some unique tactics. so if you want to know how to recruit a skilled laborer from a rural community that will stay, check out recruiting in rural communities.

Offer truly competitive wages.

You can’t operate your business without skilled labor, so you’ve got to make sure they’re not going to jump ship. Think of it this way: the cost of losing an employee is anywhere from .5-1.25 their annual salary.

When you think you can’t afford to pay someone a reasonable salary, you’re going to be wasting money hiring them for less than they are worth. Don’t lag behind industry pay trends. Want a salary analysis done? Contact us to get started.

Once you’ve got your position filled, keep the employee engaged.

There’s not a lot of engagement in the workforce today and a lot of “experts” like to say this is just because the “millennial” generation is “bad” and “unwilling to work.” This isn’t the case, the world is full of brilliant and hard-working individuals of all ages–it’s a matter of finding them and putting them to work. Sure, you might be thinking, this is simple to say, but impossible to do. If you’re struggling to find the right trade people, consider investing in a recruiter that specializes in trade-labor recruiting or in a temp agency.

Realize and react to the new job market.

For generations, employers have had the upper hand of hiring: they’ve had access to more employees than they needed. Naturally, this led to employees fighting for jobs and put employers in the position of “customer.” However, as of 2018, the tables have turned. There are now more job openings than workers to fill them.

Because of this change, employers need to realize that this puts employees in the position of power. So, providing realistically valuable reasons to work for you, is a basic requirement, not a favor to employees.

This may shift again in favor of employers very soon, but right now the market change means stepping up your value as an employer.  By increasing your value proposition, you will find and skilled labor that will make a difference in your business.

Build loyalty and stop expecting it.

The reason that it’s so hard to keep employees isn’t just because of a paycheck: employees leave for many reasons. Often, skilled labor leaves for reasons that may surprise you. Check out these Reasons that people leave their jobs.

The biggest part of the workforce as of 2018 is the millennial workforce.  They get a bad wrap, but realistically, these individuals grew up seeing their parents laid off and their co-workers fired as soon as the ROI didn’t meet projections and needs.

This is business: you understand that and now the employee does too. So, you can’t expect instant, undying loyalty when you don’t provide this in return. Building loyalty means providing value and culture and it means being different than your competitor. When you know what your employee values, you can target your employee and build loyalty. 

This list may seem overwhelming because it includes making many changes that will take time. However, if you start right now, tackling the problem that exists you will see improvement in turnover rates. In the long-run, this approach will make a difference for you and your business.