Small business HR can be challenging without a human resources team in place to assist. Add to this the importance of getting recruitment right the first time, and it can feel impossible.
We’ve put together some definitions and HR advice for you in this article to guide you through your business recruitment.
What is recruitment?
Recruitment is not just the act of offering a candidate a role. Instead, it refers to the entire process of looking for, attracting, interviewing, hiring, and bring a candidate on board.
Typically, the human resources (HR) team will look after this process and be experts in their field. However, some small businesses may not have an HR team, which means they will do it themselves. Below, we look at the finer details and what to look for when hiring.
What is Human Resources?
Human Resources, or the HR Department, are responsible for Human Resources Management (HRM). HRM means overseeing employee relations, standards in the workplace, recruitment, employee benefits, employee records, and discipline issues.
Business and human resources management
The HR department often operates as the bridge between a business’s management and its employees.
David Ulrich, the author of many books that shaped the HR profession, lists the function of Human Resources Management as:
- Aligning HR strategy with organisational strategy
- Re-engineering business processes
- Listening and responding to the workforce
- Managing transformation and change
Interview tips to recruit the right staff for the right role
The standard interview process can often leave a lot to be desired, with the same questions being asked and the same format rolled out every time. To get the most out of your hiring process, consider doing something a little different.
Below we look at some alternative methods for interviewing or practices you can add to your existing recruitment process.
Go on a workplace tour
A great way to find out more about a candidate and how they interact with others is by taking them on a tour of their potential workplace.
You can understand their personality traits by going on a tour and introducing prospective employees to potential colleagues. Further, you can also see if they respect others and find out how interested they are in your company and the people that work there.
Take the candidate out for lunch
A public setting such as a restaurant could be the perfect place to get to know your candidate. If they’ll be working closely with you, going for lunch is ideal for finding out if you could work well together.
Going for a meal means seeing how they interact with strangers, if they are polite, and if they’re personable or not. These traits are all factors that may determine how well the candidate will integrate with your existing workforce.
Conduct the interview away from the office
To avoid a sterile environment, and to put the interviewee at ease, consider interviewing at an alternative location.
Getting away from the office and asking your questions in a neutral environment can make the conversation more natural. Furthermore, it can ease the pressure of an office interview.
Ask alternative questions
So many interview questions are the same every time, typically with the same answers. Questions like:
- “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”
- “Why do you want to work for us?”
- “Give me an example of when you solved a problem in a certain way.”
- “Give me an example of working well as a team.”
These questions serve a purpose, but the answers are often well-rehearsed and don’t tell the interviewer much.
Consider alternative interview questions such as:
- “What is your greatest achievement outside of work?”
- “What was the last thing to inspire you, and why?”
- “What drives you on and gets you out of bed in the morning?”
The above questions will tell you more about the candidate and what motivates them, which is crucial for knowing how they’ll operate daily.
Points to remember before hiring
With recruitment such a crucial cog in your business, you can’t afford to hire the wrong person.
Below are some key points to remember when going through the recruitment process.
Set clear goals
Before writing your job ad, consider what you need from the person you want to hire. Talk to your employees about what they expect from the new hire and what they feel the company is missing.
By conducting a fact-finding mission, you can better understand the needs of the business. Set clear expectations and goals about what you want from the potential employee and hire accordingly.
Consider promoting from within
If the role you are recruiting for is a senior or team leader, perhaps there is some talent waiting to be given an opportunity at your organisation.
Consider scouting your existing team for potential candidates. Sometimes all that is needed is additional support or training for an employee to fulfil their potential.
Not only is this good for morale, but it can save money on recruitment costs.
Be objective and stay neutral
It can be easy to hire the candidate you got on with the most, but staying neutral and objective is essential. Competency is crucial, not just if they have a great personality.
The interview process should be well structured with plenty of notes taken, along with the right kind of probing questions.
With this guide, you should be well placed to take on your next recruitment challenge – with or without an HR team.
Remember to stay neutral, and don’t be afraid to shake up the interview format. Alternative approaches could be the answer you were looking for.