February 25, 2016

How to Hire and Keep Good Employees

dreamstime_s_38204493How To Hire and Keep Good Employees

Good help is hard to find. You hear it all the time.

But according to Cindy Hafenstine, Director of Recruiting for the Talmadge Group, a recruiting agency, it may not be as much about the employee you hired as it is about the strategy used to hire him or her.

Hafenstine recently spoke at a South Kansas City Chamber of Commerce luncheon on the topic of “Finding, Hiring and Keeping Employees.” The meeting was held at The Martin event space, 135th and Holmes. Joining her on the topic was Brad Collins from Express Employment Professionals.

Hafenstine broke down successful rules for hiring the right employee into an acronym for POWER.

  • Performance Profiles – Rather than use the traditional job description, such as listing “college degree” or “good people skills”, the employer should instead define goal expectations or Performance Profiles such as “close 20 new customers on a monthly basis” or “manage several projects while working in a demanding environment.” Hafenstine points out, “Just because someone has the skills listed in a job description does not mean they will be motivated to do the work.” With Performance Profiles, employees will have a clear, defined goal to measure his or her success.
  • Objective Evaluation – Sometimes it isn’t always about the money for an employee. To recruit top candidates, list the rewards for working in the company, such as flexible hours, working from home, or growth opportunities. Hafenstine mentioned one local company that allows parents to bring babies to work for six months. “They may not pay the most,” says Hafenstine. “But people want to go to work there.”
  • Wide-Ranging Sourcing – Only 5 to 20 percent of the talent market is actively looking for work, according to Hafenstine. The rest are only casually looking. Employers can expand their search by posting a job through social media groups (Linked-In), networking with like-minded people or providing incentives for employee referrals.
  • Emotional Control – Often employers hire people they like. But Hafenstine cautions employers to look at substance over style. The best candidates may not be the best at interviewing. Asking them to give an accomplishment that relates to a Performance Profile is a good start.
  • Recruiting Right – Take the time to call applicants who made it through the interview process and provide feedback on why they were not a good fit for the job. This enables them to gain better experience. Encourage them to re-apply.

Collins added the best ways to retain good employees was to provide good training and management. “If the employee likes the manager, he will stay,” he said. Creating good incentives such as flexible hours and providing career growth are other ways to keep employees happy.

Also at the meeting were representatives from Avila University, DeVry, and Longview Community College who promoted their job boards and job fairs.

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