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The No Nonsense Guide to Small Business Hiring

Updated on Sep 23, 2018 3847 views
The No Nonsense Guide to Small Business Hiring

With the number of big companies hiring with many advantages, hiring for small businesses has become really competitive. Hiring for a small business is not as simple as it may look competing with big companies with better structure and larger financial capacity. To recruit great talents for your small business there are some things you would need to put in place to make the hiring process a success.


So with the competition that big companies pose to small businesses, the question now will be; how will small businesses handle recruitment in a way that it competes with the big businesses and still get best talents? This hiring guide will serve as a step-by-step resource that will help you get the best talents for your small business.


What Small Business Owners Need to Know about the Hiring Process


Businesses especially small businesses rely on its workers to build a strong impression in the face of their customers, which is why getting the right set of people to join your business is really important. As a small business owner, you need to understand what a hiring/recruitment process is before talking about the best strategy to adopt.  To help you understand what recruitment is we have put the following steps together to guide you on what you need to know about recruitment:


  • Getting the best candidate can take time: As a small business owner, one thing you should know is that getting the best talent can take time sometimes so you don’t have to be in a hurry to do that. If you are looking forward to getting the best candidates for your position then it is worth the wait. Aside from the fact that getting the best candidate can be time-consuming, you are also required to take your time also to select the best.


Taking your time to select the best candidate starts by taking out time to draft a good and desirable job description for your position and distributing your vacancies through different platforms.


  • You need to clarify your needs: Clarifying your needs can help you get the best candidates for your position. As a small business owner, you should be aware that you are competing with other small and big businesses and as such you need to make your needs as clear as possible in order to attract the right people.

Writing a clear and detailed job description with clearly outlined task and skills clearly stated will help you find the best talent for your small business. When you clearly state what you are looking for on the job description, then it will be much easier for people with those skills and qualification to apply for your vacancy.


  • Leverage on social media platforms: When you have properly stated what you want, then it is time for you to spread your vacancy across different social platforms. It is not enough for you and your company to know about the vacancy, it is also important for you to leverage on social media platforms and get your vacancies across the eyes of thousands of job-seekers. One thing you will have to learn about posting your vacancy is that the more people that get to see your vacancy, the higher the possibility that you will be open to more great talents. Use social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to get your job in the eyes of many people.


  • Your interview skills matter: Another thing you need to learn about the hiring process is that your interview skills matter a lot too. As a candidate interview performance is crucial to landing a dream job so does your interview skills matter in getting the right candidates to join your team?


After you must have successfully advertised your position across different platforms and have gotten few selected CVs that you think would fit your job description, then it is time for the next big step; “the interview section”. This is the point you decide on who and who not to employ to your business. It is important for you to know that you are in control at this point and you have to guide and help the candidate showcase their talents and skills.


Your interview skills need to be strong enough to help you select the best candidate for your vacancy. It is not enough for you to use interview questions template, but it is important for you to structure the interview in a way that it will suit the job position you are applying for.


  • Recruitment is an investment: One thing you should know as a small business owner is that recruiting is an investment. To get the right and the best people to join your business, you would definitely have to invest your time and money. Getting your role advertised is an investment, taking the time to create and draft a good job description leaving out every other thing you have to do is also an investment that will help you get the right candidate


Recruitment strategies for small business
















Finding the right candidate to join your company could be a very challenging thing to do as a small business. If your business is small, you would need to decide on a good and effective hiring strategy to help you find the right candidate. It is important for you to understand that the hiring/recruitment strategy that you will adopt will depend on the type of position you are recruiting for. There are many ways small business owners can find the best talents, but these five strategies are the most effective strategies for small businesses:



  1. Build your brand: Before even going out to advertise for vacant positions, it is important for you to build your brand. Building your brand makes it easy for you to gain name recognition with job-seekers as well as other companies out there. If you have been able to create a strong brand outside it will be easier to attract the right set of people to your company.


Employer branding is a very important strategy for hiring the best talents to join your team. Branding is the image you create of your business to potential employees. Branding shows what it’s like working for your company. The first strategy to hiring the best talent is branding. A good brand will do half of the recruitment process for you. Learn how to build your brand if you are hiring for a small business. Building a business website makes it easy for job-seeker to research you. If you don’t have a business website learn how you can build one today.


  1. Social media recruitment: In our technologically advanced world, we have noticed that a large number of people are active on social media platforms. Since social media platforms serve as a marketing tool for businesses to reach thousands of people in no time, it is therefore advisable for small business owners to leverage on social media platforms to select best talents for their company.


Social media platforms are commonly used by businesses to get great talents. One social media platform that can help you with your hiring process is allows you to advertise your vacant positions to meet the target audience. You can make use of other social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to enhance your reach for suitable candidates.


  1. Involve other to help: Recruitment can be a very tedious task, to make it fast and more effective, it is important for you to carry other people along in the recruitment process. As a small business owner, it is advisable for you to involve other employees in the recruitment process. Since those employees have been there and they understand the company’s culture already, it would be easier for them to get people that can fit into the company’s culture. Involving your employees in your recruitment process could be improving your network to reach more people.


  1. Reach out to younger people: Another effective strategy that you can use to get the best talent for your position is to reach out to younger people. One way you can reach out to younger people is to organize internship/job fairs. Young people make up the large population of unemployed people in any economy and are always looking for opportunities to grow their career.


Since young people are always on the lookout for great job opportunities, be sure that your business can provide that. Young and creative minds are usually the best for small businesses, but the question is how can a small business attract these ones? A small business can attract these creative minds by engaging in internship and attachment programs. These avenues allow you to identify great talents for later job postings.


  1. Recruitment agencies: Recruitment agencies help you with most of the task involved in hiring for your small business. Recruitment agencies make the hiring process faster and more effective. Many recruitment agencies already have a number of qualified candidates that have tested for various positions, so when you request they can easily match your request with the most qualified candidate. Recruitment agencies like MyJobMag can help you get the right candidate for your position fast with a relatively lower cost.



The Importance of Employer Branding in Attracting The Right Candidate



Employer branding is not overrated for any small business that wants to thrive in this competitive market. An employer’s brand shows the way the business is seen. An employer’s brand is shaped by the way the performance of the business; from the way the business treats its staff, the work environment, employees stay and so on. If you have not been taking employer’s branding seriously, the following tips will help you see why you should take employer’s branding seriously:


  • Help reduce cost per hire: The stronger your brand the less you will have to spend on your hiring process. Companies with strong brands will spend less on trying to advertise their vacancies on various platforms and will even spend less on marketing campaigns to get their business to the public. With a strong employer brand, you will spend little or nothing on advertising because your brand will start advertising itself.
  • Builds your reputation: One of the things that employer branding does is to build your reputation. Most employees look out for companies with a good reputation before they apply for any job vacancy. Companies with good reputation don’t struggle to get their vacancies out to job-seekers rather job-seeker are on the lookout for such companies.
  • Improves employee’s engagement: the stronger your brand the more engaged your employees will be. Employees that work in strong brands tend to be generally more enthusiastic about their job. Having an enthusiastic and motivated employee is good for your small business because they will be more productive. The more productive an employee is the more growth it will mean for your business.
  • Attracting and retaining the right talent: Having a good employer brand will help you attract and retain the right talent for you your small business. When you have a strong brand (especially online) that job-seekers can access and view at any time can help attract good candidates to your company. That is why it is important for you to build a company brand on social media platforms.



How to Determine the Job Market Value for your Positions














When it comes to calculating employee’s compensation for a new position most small business owners usually find themselves at a loss. Since many small businesses may not have the resources to get a compensation expert to help calculate employees’ compensation for a vacant position. Now the question is how can employers determine a fair market price for employees?  These tips will help you determine a fair market price for your employees:

  • Weigh the position: Before you determine the salary scale for a position, you have to access and weigh the position for which you are going to pay.  Weighing the position help you determine the value that position will add to the organization. You can weigh the position by creating a detailed job description that highlights duties and responsibilities, level of commitment, the skill set required, certifications and level of experience. Evaluating the position well and discovering the ways it will benefit you and the employee can lead you to get the best employee for the position.
  • Research wages: A good way to determine the market value for your position is to research wages by offering a competitive compensation. By researching the median pay for a particular position you can forecast what an employee will want to earn. It is important for you to put how much your business can afford into consideration. Researching wages will allow you know how experience, qualification, and skillset influence salary. Mysalaryscale is a good resource for researching wages and salaries.
  • Set financial parameters: Another way to determine the market value for your position is to set financial parameters. Once you know the value of the position you are recruiting for and the median pay you can offer, then figure out your payment baseline and maximum. You should be able to determine the minimum amount you will be willing to offer and what the maximum price will be for you. When setting your financial parameters, you should put the employee in your plans. You should also be able to discover which employee or what position gets the maximum and why.
  • Look at government salaries: Another way you can determine the job market value for your position is by looking at government salaries as a guide. Since government salaries are public information, you can use it to gain insight into what a compensation scheme is in different job fields. This information can help you discover how other compensations are being compensated.
  • Check job portals: Job portals can help you have an idea of the compensation structure for different positions. When some jobs are advertised they usually come with the salary range. Seeing the salary range for different positions can help you set a fair compensation pattern for your positions. Job portals like will be a good option to help you view different job positions.
  • Check competitors salary page: You can check the your competitor’s salary page for job listings that are similar to yours and use that as a guide to set your own salary structure for your employees. When checking company sites, remember to check companies that are operating within your capacity.



A Practical Checklist for Hiring The Right Candidate


Hiring for a new position could be really stressful and time-consuming process for your small business, but it can also be an experience that can open you up to amazing life opportunities. To ensure that your hiring process is effective and successful, we have put this checklist to help you with your hiring process:


  1. Advertise your positions
  • Make a vacant positions open to internal employees first
  • Use the service of a recruitment agency
  • Leverage on your professional network
  • Take advantage of social media platforms
  • Advertise job openings on job boards
  1. Ensure a successful interview process
  • Create a structured interview process; this could be in form of a telephone interview, one-on-one interview, and so on. The essence is to enable you to have a laid down structure that you can use for your interview process.
  • Create behavioral interview questions that will help you discover skill and cultural fit.
  • Research interview questions that you will find really useful for that particular position.
  • Ensure candidates have a good interview experience
  • Create a list of your top candidates and have another employee review the applications before bringing the top candidates back in for interviews.
  • Have your potential candidate take a pre-employment test before offering them the job, this will enable you to know if the candidates have the skills you are looking out for.
  1. Select your candidate and make an offer
  • Reach out to your final candidates and make an offer
  • Ensure you take a background check on your most preferred, candidates
  • Finalize compensation range with most preferred candidates
  • Send out the official offer letter to the employee which includes the position description, salary, and commitments the new hire has agreed to.



The Best Job Interview Questions to Ask Employees



As an employer, the interview gives you the opportunity to decide whether the applicant is a good fit for the position and the company.

An employer can only decide if an applicant is fit for the position if he gets the right information from the applicant by asking the right questions. So how do you ask the right questions? See these best job interview questions and hire the right talents today;

  1. “What is the most difficult thing you have ever done?”

This question is broad, so the answer could be either professional or personal, whatever the response may be, you should stick to the reason you asked the question. You should understand that the candidate’s accomplishment is not as important as how the person did it, why the candidate describes the situation as difficult, and why the candidate decided to do a difficult thing.


The answer to this question can provide insight into the candidate’s problem-solving skills, the candidate’s definition of “hard” and how the candidate’s idea aligns with the challenges your business faces.

  1. “Which skill makes you the most qualified for this position?”

As an interviewer, you will need to focus on the essence of the question to get what you want from the candidates. When candidates answer this question; they either give answers relating to how they fit into the culture of the company or how they fit into the job role. Your first focus should be on finding the candidate that has the necessary skills and qualification to fill the position.


This kind of questions allows you get more information about what the candidate thinks are his core skills and competencies, and it also allows you to confirm if the candidate has a good understanding of what the role entails. If the candidate talks about skills that are not relevant to the job role, then it is a sign that the candidate is not fit for the position.

  1. “How do you define success?”

This is one of the most important questions to ask a candidate during an interview. It helps you to understand how the candidate sees himself and what the candidate can bring into your company to help the company achieve success.


It is important for you to understand that everyone’s definition of success is different, but how anyone defines success will definitely inform you about the candidate’s work habit, ethics and willingness to be part of a team. From a candidate’s definition of success, you can tell so much about the person.

  1. “Why are you leaving your current employment?”

This is another important question you can ask a job candidate. Most job candidates are always careful when answering this question.  No employee would like to bad-mouth the former employer or place of work. This question will you some information about the candidate’s work history and also help you identify some attributes that you may not find interesting.

  1. “What would you like to improve on and what is your plan for improvement?”

Coming out straight to ask to ask the candidate about his greatest weakness is already a cliché, so phrasing the question like this is another way you can ask the question. Focusing on the candidate’s area of improvement will still allow the candidate to talk about his weakness.



Interview Mistake Every Employer should Avoid


The key to running a successful and healthy company starts with your hiring process and decisions. Since employees go a long way to determine the growth and success of the business, then it is very important for you as a small business owner to make sure you get the right employees into your company by avoiding these interview mistakes:

  • Fail to provide job description clarity: One of the biggest mistake employers make is not giving a clear picture of the position they are hiring for. Having a not well-detailed description when advertising your position doesn’t only waste the candidate’s time, but it also wastes the business time and resources. When the job description is not clear enough. You will end up training and employing the wrong people.
  •  Failure to create a clear plan for the interview: When you don’t plan for ahead for the interview you have scheduled to hold on a particular, then you are planning to either spend so much time on the interview process and not find any candidate or hire the wrong person. For your job. Creating a well-thought interview plan will help you pick the best fit for your job opening.
  • Not testing the candidate’s abilities/skills: One mistake that most employers make is that they fail to test the candidate’s abilities and skills needed to perform that particular task. Many employers always base their interview on a series of question and answer without necessarily testing the candidate’s core skills required to perform the task.
  • Not opening up before or during the interview: One mistake most employers make is that they don’t tell the candidate all they need to know about the position and how the company works. Some employers hide some information about another task that the candidate may likely do if he/she gets employed and now bring them up after the contract is sealed already. This mistake can lead to job dissatisfaction and probably other issues with the employer.
  • Settling down because of a small candidate pool: One mistake employers should never make is settling down because you have a small candidate pool and you don’t want to go further pushing and pushing. Employers should always be ready to invest their time and energy to find the candidate that will be a good fit for the position. When you settle for a small pool, you will have smaller options and will likely settle for a candidate that is better than the available and not the best.

It is very necessary for you to avoid these mistakes and get the right candidates for your small business.




How to Create a Good Candidate Experience



Candidate experience can be defined as how job candidates view and react to a company or employers’ recruiting, interviewing, hiring, and onboarding process. The hiring process could be stressful for companies trying to get the best talents to join their team and the applicants alike.

When companies are seeking to hire talents with the most sought-after skills then-candidate experience becomes an integral aspect of the recruitment process to ensure a less stressful, less time consuming and confusing process. Since a company’s candidate experience can make or mar a company’s reputation, then it is important for you to learn how to create a good candidate experience following these tips:

  1. Know why you are hiring: As an employer, you need to know why you are hiring for a particular position. It means that you have to be able to identify the real need for the particular skill gap you need to fill. Being organized from the onset of your recruitment can create a good candidate experience. You can identify the purpose of your recruitment by;
  • Performing a skill gap analysis: Performing a skill gap analysis will allow you to know the skills that are most needed and skills that you can encourage your employees to acquire.
  • Choosing a suitable job title: After conducting a skill gap analysis to find out what skill you need for your small business, you can then choose a suitable job title that will capture that skill gap. Find the skill gap improve the candidate experience because it focuses on finding people to meet the business need.
  1. Write a clear job description: Creating a good candidate experience starts from even your job description. Creating a job description that is very clear, well descriptive and straight to the point contributes a lot to your candidate’s experience. It is important for you to structure your job description in a way that it is easy to read, and that it contains all the required information that will help you get the right candidate.


It is very necessary for you to spell out your “must have” requirements as clearly as possible. You should also remember to make your job description very easy to read and understand. Creating an ambiguous or cliché job description can frustrate your candidate experience.

  1. Make your application process easy for applicants: Another way you can create a good candidate experience is to make the application process easy for applicants. Making your application easy starts by how you are able to make your vacancies visible to applicants. You can make the application process easy for candidates by taking the following steps;
  • Make your career page very visible on the website; your career page should be positioned in such a way that it can be easy to find.
  • Give clear application guidelines and instruction: Try to create a clear application instruction and guidelines that will help give an applicant a favorable experience. Avoid creating long and confusing instructions, that kind of instructions make applicants disinterested.
  • Make your application short and mobile friendly: If your application process is long it can frustrate applicants. Applicants usually prefer short and straight to the point application forms.
  • Send a confirmation email when applicants submit their application.
  1. Ensure you communicate effectively: Communication plays an important role in making sure candidates have a good experience with your company. It is important for you to always tell candidates about the next stage or the next step they need to take. Since communication is key, it is necessary is to keep candidates informed at every stage of the interview. Send the mail that you have acknowledged their application, reminder emails, and even thank you emails.
  2. Seek honest feedback: If you want to create a good candidate experience every time during your recruitment process then you should look forward to creating a flexible hiring process. Getting feedbacks to help you restructure your process.

After conducting your recruitment process and selecting your best candidate and rejecting candidates that you think don’t fit well into your company, you should also do well to seek honest feedback from your candidate about your hiring process.

The hiring process is the major way candidates form their impression of your company. Except your company is really popular, many people don’t know how it feels like working with your company, so your recruitment process will tell much about your company. Having a good hiring process will do the following for your company;

  • Improve your hiring reputation and will make it easy for you to get good candidates
  • Help you get candidates that will be happy to work for your company.




How Small Businesses Can Find Great Talents



The corporate world has changed just like every other thing has changed. Employees’ values have changed also. Most employees value a job that can give them the flexibility and the growth they require to move forward in their career. As a small business you may find it really challenging to compete with big companies for talents, but getting it right and providing the necessary things can help you get the right talents. See how you can find great talents for your small business following these tips:


  • Provide opportunities for advancement: Most employees these days look forward to work for companies that will provide advancement opportunities. Advancement opportunities will help you attract the right talent to your business and will also help you retain top skills for your business. When you show a candidate that they have the opportunity to improve their while working for you, then you will be attracting great talents regardless of the big companies out there.
  • Flexible work schedules: With recent trends, we have found out that almost half of the total population of people working are working remotely. As such many people are going into freelancing. If your company accommodates working remotely, you will surely be able to attract the right kind of people to your company, because most skilled people would love to work remotely.
  • Create a positive and accommodating work environment: Most people work in small companies because of the work environment that you are likely to get there. Many people have the belief that the smaller the more the friendly and less informal the work environment will be. So as a small business without name recognition, you should always look forward to giving job-seekers the reason to work with you.
  • Network and seek referrals: Creating a good relationship with universities and colleges nearby is a good way for small business owners to improve their network.  When you create a good relationship and network with local universities and institutions around, your chances of getting referrals will become higher. Another good way to network is by identifying platforms that allow you to build a relationship with job seekers, students and young people at large. It is also not enough for you to network with job seekers and students, you can network with big companies to learn more about the things they do better.
  • Participate in job fairs: Participating in job fairs is another means to getting top talents. Small business owners should look for local job fairs to participate.  It is not uncommon that big companies at most job fairs always drag a majority of the employees to themselves because of the brand name, but attending job fairs is a great opportunity for small businesses to get the right people. While the big companies struggle with a large crowd, they soon get tired and become more impersonal with job seekers, smaller companies have that personal touch with job seekers that those big companies cannot replicate. Learn more here



3 Reasons Why Your Small Business Should Use a Recruitment Analytics




















Hiring is one important process in a business circle that needs to be handled properly. Since this is one process that you would not like to make mistake because hiring mistakes can cost you the business. To avoid making hiring mistakes you should make the right the right decision while hiring at any cost.


When it comes to decision making in business, it is better and safer to rely on data and analytics to make decisions. Recruitment analytics improves the quality of hiring by streamlining the hiring process. Recruitment analytics is a system that analyses, tracks, measures, collate candidate and employee data in making hiring decisions. I you are wondering why you should use a recruitment analytics, then see these three reasons:


  1. Helps you find the right candidate: You can use data and analytics to select the best prospective employees from the pool even from the beginning stage of your interview. With data backed algorithms, you can measure soft skills that are required from a prospective employee. The analytics will evaluate the skills the candidate needs to work and grow in your company. After using the intelligent analytics system to shortlist candidates, you can then proceed to schedule a time for a one-on-one interview with your most preferred candidates. The analytics will save the time that would have been spent trying to select applications.
  2. Help identify best candidate sources: One amazing way that a recruitment analytics can help in your recruitment process is that it can help you identify where you find the best candidates for your positions. A big challenge that most small businesses experience is where to get the best talents to fill their positions.


With a recruitment analytics, you can find the best talent sources by using data to analyze where your top performers found your job listing and helping you discover where you should focus on more when you are advertising your positions. You can also use this to identify which sources have the highest turnover rate. You will find out that this system is really cost-effective because it will help you invest more in productive sources and drop less productive ones.

  1. Helps with Skill identification and market trends: With data and analytics, you can get insight on what kind of skills and abilities are required for a job role, this will even help you in drafting your job description. Aside from helping with skill identification, a recruitment analytics can also help you analyze the market trend for different positions. Analyzing the market trend can help you know the jobs that are currently available in the market and what companies are looking out for in this role. If you run a staffing agency, then this will be of great help to you.

If you have been spending a lot on your hiring process without getting the required result, then a recruitment analytics is what you need for an effective, cost-effective hiring process.



Why Small Businesses Should Outsource their Recruitment Process
















With the cost involved in carrying out an effective recruitment process, small businesses may not be able to carry out a well-structured and effective recruitment process. With recruitment agencies like everywhere it is easier for small businesses to get the right candidates for their job positions without necessarily passing through the stress of trying to make the interview process effective. These are the reasons why small businesses should outsource their recruitment process;

  • Helps reduce cost: Hiring costs are all rolled into one when companies outsource recruiting, and it’s usually less than trying to conduct an effective recruiting campaign in-house. When small businesses outsource their recruitment to expert, cost per hire is reduced as well as time for recruitment.
  • Helps you focus on your core business: When you outsource your recruitment process, it will give you the time to focus on your core business operation. If the HR in your company is overburdened with recruitment processes, this will affect his/her HR functions in the company that will eventually lead to lack of productivity and focus.
  • Improve recruitment effectiveness: There are some factors that can reduce the effectiveness of a recruitment process for a small business like; interview space, finance, etc. When you outsource your recruitment, you will benefit the ability to reach more candidates.
  • Competitive advantage: As a small business, you may not have the same resources that higher competitors have to compete for talents, but when you outsource your recruitment process to an outsourcing company you will enjoy the competitive advantage that you may not have.
  • Reduce turnover rate: Handling your recruitment yourself without doing it effectively can increase instead reduce the turnover rate. Recruiters are skilled in accessing what kind of people will be suitable for a certain role and a company culture.

Hiring for a small business could be really challenging, but with the right knowledge and steps hiring for a small business can be really easy. If you are struggling with hiring for your small business, you may want to check out our article on what is recruitment to get some basic understanding of how recruitment works.

Staff Writer

This article was written and edited by a staff writer.

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