Successful companies are built on strong talent. However, finding the right talent can be tricky for most small business, especially independently owned and operated companies. According to recent study by Great Places to Work, small and mid-size corporates in India are planning to grow their workforce by about 32% in the next 12 months. But the reality is most small businesses are handicapped by lack of strong market presence and forced to compete with bigger businesses for top talent. In addition, poorly organized hiring processes and insufficient training resources hamper candidate experience, resulting in high attrition.
Here are five ways small businesses can compete with big companies and find quality employees:
1. Define your company’s vision, mission and values: Painting a picture of what it is like to work with your company is critical to attracting talent. This is especially true for millennials who are constantly looking to work with truthful and purpose-driven companies. Highlight the way your company works and gives back to the society. One way to do this is create an attractive website with photos of real employees carrying out real tasks at your business.
2. Broaden your recruitment horizons: Great candidates are not hired in a day. It requires creating talent pools and developing robust hiring practices. Start by developing the job description internally and identifying behavioral characteristics of ideal candidates. Once you have a job description, spread the word. Use your professional networks and social media channels such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to connect with potential candidates. You can also use trade show booth time, employee referrals, career fair or local chamber of commerce meetings - tactics that put your company top-of-mind for potential hires.
3. Hire for right fit: Organizations that hire right fit talent see increased performance, productivity, employee engagement and retention. One way to do this is to have the right interview process in place and use behavioral interview tools. Also evaluate candidates on their values, strengths, cultural fit, attitude, aspirations, competencies and learning ability. Once employees are hired, it is equally important to empower them to do their jobs well.
4. Be ready to deploy training programs: When a new employee is hired by a large business, they often undergo some kind of training to get them ready for the new job. Small businesses often lack such resources. This means the responsibility of getting new hires up to speed falls on the manager and other senior staff members. Having a training program that fits your budget is critical to engaging new hires, ensuring high performance and enhancing productivity.
5. Provide flexible working schedules: For today’s millennial workforce, finding ideal work-life balance is essential. According to research conducted by Bentley University, for 76% of employees “finding me-time” is a challenge. Companies that offer more time off or flexible work schedules become a magnet for recruiting exceptional talent.
What’s the right hiring strategy for small businesses? The path to success lies in taking a holistic approach. Look for non-traditional candidates who are often passed over by other companies but have the right skill sets. Implement smart hiring practices, ask the right questions, and play up the right strengths such as better job satisfaction, to tap into the best talent.