It’s a great problem to have. New business has created a need for more employees. But it’s also frightening! How will you find the right people and make them part of your team?
Here are some steps to make the process go more smoothly.
Smooth process of increasing staff
What are your needs?
You’ve evaluated the new work demand and determined you need five more people in the warehouse. Here are some examples of things to consider about those five:
- How many will need to be proficient with a forklift?
- How many need experience in exactly your industry?
- Will they all need to speak English?
- Will all five report to the same supervisor?
- Does he or she have time to manage five new hires?
Where will you find them?
Easy enough to know you need them; not so easy to find them. Try these suggestions:
Your current staff
Your best employee’s brother might turn out to be the worst worker you’ve ever seen, but often siblings grow up with the same values and work ethic. Chances are good that one of your team will know someone who’s been looking for a job like yours. You might even offer a bonus for a referral that works out.
Especially if you’re in a high turnover industry, you should already have a relationship with at least one service. Let them know as far in advance as possible that you’ll be increasing staff.
Don’t underestimate the power of FaceBook, Craig’s List, and any site that gets the traffic you’re looking for.
How will you train them?
Odds are these new folks won’t walk in the door ready to be your Top Performer. Here are some things you can do to help them get off to a great start:
Hold an orientation meeting
Share your core values. Show everyone the water fountain, the rest room, the refrigerator (and the rules for using it). When will they get paid? What time should they be there? What will they wear?
Have them shadow an employee in the same or similar job
This ensures that what they heard you say in the interview is what they will be doing regularly. It gives them a chance to ask questions about the process. And it helps your existing team get used to “the new guy.”
Give them a handbook with a job description
It’s good to have your expectations clearly defined in writing. A welcome packet customized for each department can answer a lot of questions.
What tools will they need?
Nothing makes you look like a Bad Boss more quickly than to have a new worker show up on the first morning and have nowhere to sit!
- Prepare the workspace ahead of time – Do you need desks? Chairs? Computers?
- Make sure everything is in working order – Equipment that doesn’t work correctly could be unsafe.
- Alert IT that you’ll need new passwords – If your worker needs to get into your system, be sure he or she CAN get into your system. Why waste time on day one waiting for IT to show up?
- Assign a telephone extension to the new space – Will this person be making calls for you? Then let’s have a phone ready!
- If you use lockers, have one prepared for the new folks – Don’t make your new warehouse guy tote his lunch around with him all morning.
- Make them feel welcome!
Automate, Automate, Automate!
- Many HR and payroll Apps allow self-onboarding. No one wants that fat intimidating packet of papers to fill out. Do this online.
- No paper time sheets! You didn’t have time to calculate timesheets BEFORE you expanded; what makes you think you’ll have time for that now?
- Integrate time directly into your accounting software. No data entry.
- Scheduling – Who has time to call everybody on the team and tell them when to be where? Scheduling online with alerts to employees relieves that headache.
Whoever you choose and however you choose them, always remember that the surest way to make an employee loyal is to treat him or her with respect. A full snack cabinet in the break room and liberal PTO are certainly important. But make them feel as if they are partners, and they’ll value your business as much as you do.
Susan Pruskin writes for ClockShark and is a Top 100 QuickBooks ProAdvisor with an Intuit-centric accounting practice in Cary, North Carolina. With 30 years’ experience in business, she’s expertly qualified to help you navigate the changes in your company. You can find out more about Susan’s consulting practice at www.susanpruskin.com.