By Stephanie Carnes
It continues to be one of the biggest topics in our industry right now: how difficult it is to recruit quality employees—or even get applicants. The United States Chamber of Commerce reports that more than half of small business owners, including chauffeured transportation operators, who are actively trying to hire say that they are having trouble finding workers. The causes have been addressed numerous times in industry publications in the recent months (like here and here)—but the lack of staff couldn’t have come at a worse time for companies as the economy heats up.
Whether you need to hire one employee or rebuild your entire team, chances are you don’t have the time to spend on recruiting, and you don’t want to blow a small fortune on it either. Luckily, we have some cost-effective strategies to share that can raise your odds of making your next great hire. When hiring is this tricky, you need as many arrows in your quiver as possible.
There are so many reasons that referral programs are great recruiting tools. Offering an incentive to your current employees to recommend their friends has tremendous benefits:
- Your employees can be the best ambassadors for your brand. When they recommend that their friends and acquaintances consider working for you, it’s great social proof that your company culture is strong.
- Employees know what it takes to do well at your company, so the people they recommend are often almost pre-screened for you.
- According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), referral programs significantly lower your cost per hire and the length of the hiring process.
- Referred employees stay in their jobs longer than employees found through other means, lowering the cost of turnover.
- The referral bonus can be cash, but it could also be a free ride, paid time off, or entry in a raffle for a bigger prize.
Simply maintaining a presence on social media can help you attract candidates. People who are considering working with you will likely check out your web presence, and an active profile demonstrates that you are in business. Sharing content such as business news, employee spotlights, and even lighthearted fun can persuade applicants how great your company is to work for. You don’t have to be on every social media platform, but you should be on Facebook at minimum and ideally LinkedIn as well.
Social media can also play an active role in sourcing workers. Indeed.com and job boards are obvious places to post an ad for the position you have open, but don’t forget that you can also post ads on social media for free. Facebook makes it easy:
- Go to your business page.
- Below Create Post at the top of your timeline, click Job.
- Facebook will populate the job posting with your banner photos and detail from your page, but you can swap it out with job-related content.
- Upload a photo that will draw people’s attention. Fill in the necessary information by entering a job title, describing the position, and adding any other details to your post such as qualifications, salary, or hours.
- You can add some prescreening questions by clicking + Add Question. Prescreening can save a lot of time in the recruiting process.
- Normally, you’ll receive the job applications in Facebook Messenger. However, if you’d like to receive job applications by email, you can scroll down and enter your email address.
- When you have filled out the form completely, click Next at the bottom and then click Post.
Note: when you boost a post with a job ad on Facebook, you will have to select Special Ad Category, which means some of your targeting options will be limited. You’ll still be able to choose a geographic location such as a city +15 miles and interests, so we find boosting is still worth it.
❱ Streamlining the Interview Process
We always recommend some form of prescreening at the beginning of the recruiting process, whether it is part of the online application or via email or a quick phone call. When you have an abundance of candidates, prescreening can help you narrow the pool, but even when you don’t, asking questions or seeking information gives you confidence to move forward. The types of prescreening questions you ask will depend on the position. Obvious ones would be asking potential chauffeurs about which license class or classes they possess. For candidates who would need to communicate with clients via email, ask them to write a paragraph answer to one of your interview questions to make sure their writing skills and tone are acceptable.
In the past, we probably wouldn’t have suggested this, but we now believe that interviewing via Zoom or other videoconferencing is worthwhile. Over the past year and a half, many of us have become more comfortable with Zoom work meetings, family reunions, and happy hours, and while I don’t usually hear people saying they love video calls, there is a level of comfort with the technology and process that didn’t exist before.
Interviewing via Zoom can save significant time and money:
- It allows you to do it from anywhere (work, home, a parking lot before an appointment), which is a benefit to you and to the candidate
- More than one interviewer can conveniently participate in a single interview
- You can recruit people who are out of town or moving to your area rather than waiting a long time for them to be in your ZIP code
- While not as natural as an in-person conversation, chatting on video gives you non-verbal communication that a phone call cannot
- Basic Zoom accounts are free, but if you have a paid one, you can record interviews that you can view if you forget something discussed or you can share with other team members for feedback
Stephanie Carnes is the Spotlight Director for The LMC Groups. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.