Small Business Pam Watson Korbel

Small Business Pam Watson Korbel
Picture of Pam Watson KorbelPam Watson Korbel is an expert on small business and revenue growth. She personally managed exponential growth in two companies: a software firm that grew by 500% in four years and a health care firm that grew by 1800% in eight years. In addition, she has been advising fast growth companies as a coach and consultant since 1996.

Hiring in a Tight Job Market

Hiring in a Tight Job Market

When help wanted ads start popping up on the sides of buses, on the radio, along with signs inside retail establishments and more frequent job fairs, then you know hiring new employees for your business will be difficult. Everyone else is looking to find the best from what is obviously a tight list of potential workers. With fewer candidates available, the hiring process will last longer and will probably require more of your own time.

Small businesses will find the need to be more strategic when it comes to Human Resources in order to continually attract good candidates. Several options are available to positively impact your hiring cycle.

Creative Search Ideas

Ads in newspapers and online will not pull in enough candidates during a tight job market. To broaden the pool, consider advertising with trade associations and online networking platforms like LinkedIn and job boards. Referrals from employees, vendors and collaborators may also help.

You can also get creative by reaching out to former employees to inquire about returning to your business along with inviting passive prospects to apply, such as employees of competitors or perhaps your LinkedIn contacts. In a tight job market, it’s the employer who needs to beat the bushes for the right people.

Statistics show the more specific the wording in your ads, the more candidates who will apply. Focus on specifics about the position and your company and remember short, vague ads do NOT attract applicants.

Lastly, recruiters can be helpful but you want to ensure you hire the right firm. Check references and match industry and candidate pools to your business needs.

Always Recruit

Many companies find success with ongoing recruitment with ads appearing on their own website along with other online platforms 365 days a year. Employers who use these methods screen all resumes as they come in and interview for a “bench”. This way when an opening pops up, screened candidates are available. This proactive approach also gives you the opportunity to position the company with the candidates. A nurturing process should be utilized to stay in touch with candidates.

Screen Candidates Differently

Small business owners report when they lower the standards for hiring they are disappointed in the work quality of those they do hire and higher than usual employee turnover. However, changing the methods to screen employees can help uncover “diamonds in the rough.”

Rather than just looking for experience, screen your candidates for emotional intelligence and behavioral traits that fit your company’s culture. Once hired, train your newest team members with the job skills you need. Several behavioral assessment tools are available online and through human resources consultants to help with this process.

Upgrade your Business Culture

The easiest way to recruit new employees is to make sure you keep the ones you already have by creating a business culture that entices them to stay. Current research shows today’s employees are looking for a stimulating, rewarding, positive and fun culture. When employees like their work and employer, the word spreads quickly and then new employees will seek out your business on their own.

Enhance Your Company’s Reputation

Company reputation is part of a great business culture. Ensuring your company values are strong helps to attract and retain employees. In today’s online world, that also means you must monitor reviews of your company and insure negative and untrue reports are eliminated or minimized.

In addition, a small idea that makes a big difference is keeping your website up-to-date. Prospective employees say they are disenchanted with companies who don’t have an accurate website.

Offer Extras to be More Attractive

Generally, compensation is the first area analyzed and adjusted to make a small business attractive to new employees. While salary ranges and benefits need to be comparable to the competition, some other “extras” can aid in recruiting including:

  • Flexible work hours
  • Work from home options
  • Free parking or assistance with parking and transportation
  • Social events
  • Paid time off
  • Training – helping employees stay up-to-date on their skills and to constantly learn.

In conclusion, small companies hiring new employees need to work harder to recruit the right people. However, their ability to behave more nimbly helps them to become an attractive employer.


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