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How to Hire and Keep the Best Employees

Are you a manager who’s suddenly had the task of hiring a new employee thrown into your already busy schedule? Especially if you’ve never been responsible for expanding a team, hiring a new employee can be a daunting, endless process. There are many different avenues to consider on where to find people and countless “best-practices” to follow when hiring. Once you have the best person, it’s never a guarantee that you’ll keep them, but you want to do everything in your power to ensure they stay with you.

There is no need to stress out over hiring and keeping the best employees. While it can’t be taken lightly, recruiting people for your team doesn’t have to be the nightmare you may be expecting. For starters, review this infographic from BackgroundChecks.org. It outlines a simple hiring process with tips and tricks at each stage that will lead to a smooth hire in no time.

How to Hire and Keep the Best Employees #infographic

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Just Proof-Read Your Job Postings!

Just Proof-Read Your Job Postings!We frequently criticize job seekers for spelling and grammar mistakes on resumes and unprofessional-looking emails, but are we taking a close enough look in the mirror? It’s simple to make a spelling mistake, often just because we’re rushing and our fingers type the wrong word or put letters in the wrong order. If you’re hesitant to forgive job applicants and immediately judge them for these slips, then you had better be certain that you never make the same mistakes. After all, just about every professional has learned the hard way that the sophistication in spell check in programs like Microsoft Word and Google Chrome, is not perfect.

Failing to properly proof-read your job description before posting it out to job boards, can have serious implications on your recruiting process. The obvious consequence is how unprofessional you will look to job seekers, though it is unlikely they will disregard the opportunity because you used the wrong “your.” Proof-reading goes beyond spelling and grammar ensuring text is formatted and written clearly to make sense. Without this process in place, you can suffer miscommunications with job seekers who misunderstand the actual role due to a vague job description or misguided requirements and perks. What if this misunderstanding isn’t recognized until mid-interview? You could waste both your time and the candidate’s time.

A few of the common mistakes job seekers report seeing in job postings include:

  • Spelling and grammar errors
  • Inconsistent tenses in bullet points
  • Run-on or incomplete sentences that don’t make sense
  • Excessive corporate jargon
  • Inconsistent or sloppy formatting

Given the potential outcome of not reviewing a job description before publishing it, perhaps it’s time to review your own processes and minimize your risk of appearing unprofessional. A few practices you can consider are:

  • Review it later. If you wrote the entire description, then close it and come back to it later when you have a fresh set of eyes.
  • Review it with different goals. Use the common errors above as an example. Proof-read your description five times and, each time, search for a different type of error.
  • Get somebody else involved. Sometimes, no matter how fresh, your eyes just won’t catch errors and your mind will always make sense of the convoluted sentence you wrote. Ask somebody else, preferably somebody detail-oriented and not connected with this particular role, to proof-read as well.

The reality is, no matter how much effort you put in, some errors are going to sneak past you. As long as you have a plan to quickly fix them as they’re identified, you will minimize the risk of losing business or candidates.

You could also ask yourself how you will deal with applicants who point out your errors. Is it a negative or a positive trait? Start that conversations in the comments below!

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Are Facebook Job Postings Right for You?

Are Facebook Job Postings Right for You?Social media is an integral part of many strategies in today’s business world. It’s used by e-commerce sites to sell products, marketing departments to build relationships with customers, and recruitment teams to attract new talent. Focusing on the latter, the most popular social network for recruiting professionals is LinkedIn. It boasts a massive network of future employees for companies around the world. But, LinkedIn tends to be limited to professionals and white collar workers, meaning it is not effective at recruiting for all positions. Enter Facebook!

This past February, Facebook finally got into the job board game and opened up free job postings for employers. Since then, companies have scrambled to understand and try the new service and see if it works for them. If you’re still working to wrap your head around this concept, then keep reading this simple overview of Facebook’s job posting feature.

How do Facebook Job Postings Work?

  1. The administrator of a company page just has to go to the “Jobs” app in Facebook, which is usually located in the left menu of their newsfeed.
  2. Immediately at the top of the page will be a button to Publish a post. From there, the administrator can enter all of the details, including a job description (max 5000 characters), a photo to attract users and, if you’d like, questions to ask applicants before they apply.
  3. Once published, a link to a “Jobs” tab will appear in the left menu of your company page. That tab will have all of your company’s jobs for visitors to explore. Your job will also appear in Facebook’s main job board section, and link back to your page.
  4. For extra exposure, companies can pay to boost their job postings. The benefit of paying to boost on Facebook is that you can target specific people. For example, ensure it is only viewed by people living in a certain region who previously worked in a specific industry.
  5. When job seekers are interested in your job, they only need to hit an “Apply” button. Facebook will auto-populate their information based on their profile and allow them to edit it.
  6. The candidate’s complete application will arrive in your Facebook company page’s inbox, ready to review. The administrator can then send Facebook messages back and forth with the applicant to receive further clarifications and request a resume.

What Do You Need to Set Up Facebook Job Posting?

  • Company Page: You absolutely need a company page if you’d like to do get started. It is easy to set-up and doesn’t have to be complicated. In addition, you need to ensure that anybody who will be involved in the job posting process on Facebook has the proper administrative rights.
  • Proper Employer Branding: The previous point said set-up doesn’t need to be complicated, but it should be well thought out and more than just a name. Be sure to add pictures and information that show your corporate brand so job seekers immediately know what it’s like to work at your company.
  • A Second Company Page (optional): When you tell your marketing department you plan to take over the Facebook page to show your internal culture and recruit people, they may not be happy. Especially in B2C companies, Facebook pages target customers who may have different behaviours and interests than employees. If this is the case, consider a second page that is corporate and geared towards recruiting.
  • A Defined Process: Posting jobs to Facebook and receiving applications is different from traditional job boards, especially since applications only come in through instant message. Ensure you know how you’ll post, take in applications, and interact with candidates.

Do Facebook Job Postings Suit Your Needs?

There are endless job posting and recruiting tools out there and you clearly don’t need all of them. Facebook is no exception and should be evaluated accordingly. A few questions to ask yourself are:

  • Who are your candidates? As noted, LinkedIn is better for professionals. Facebook will include them, but will also encompass another demographic of workers. At the same time, many people boycott Facebook or, if they are on it, they do not want to use it for a job search.
  • Do you have the resources to manage it properly? The previous section discussed developing a defined process. Once that is outlined, can you follow it? Do you have enough time and ability to manage those applications?
  • Do you have too many jobs? Perhaps the biggest downside for many recruiters is that Facebook has no integration with Applicant Tracking Systems. Part of its value is the easy application and information to your Facebook inbox, but if you have hundreds of job postings, that is an administrative nightmare.

All social networks have their uses and benefits and whether Facebook works for you is a decision for your recruiting team. One thing is for sure, as the largest social network in the world, its free job postings are guaranteed to be the right opportunity for countless small and medium sized businesses.

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Using Analytics to Create the Best Careers Page

Using Analytics to Create the Best Careers PageThe Careers Page on your website is one of the most important online recruiting tools you have. It’s the place where you can be certain all candidates are going to get your sales pitch about working for your organization. You use it as the hub for bragging about your benefits, culture and opportunities. It also usually includes links to job openings so people can apply.

Such an important asset must be monitored, maintained and continuously improved to ensure you’re always delivering the right message to job seekers. The question is: How do you know if it’s working?

Measuring your Careers Page will apply the same strategy used by your web team to monitor the success of your entire website. Google Analytics or a similar tool should already be set up, in which case, it’s a matter of requesting the right information.

Set Your Goals

The first step to improving anything is understanding specifically what you want to improve. Simply saying “We want the best Careers Page” makes it very difficult to measure success. Work with your recruiting team to understand exactly what you want to get out of the page. Does it just need to tell people how awesome it is to work at your company? Do you want job seekers to find your page and apply to job openings or reach out to HR? Is it a place where candidates at the interview stage can seek additional information about the organization?

You should also set a strategy about how you want people to learn about your page. For example, are you making a push to promote your company through social media or do you want to understand how successful your in-house recruiters’ emails are? Your strategy may also focus on referrals from other job boards or search engines like Google.

Decide What You’ll Measure

Your goals will dictate what you want to measure. Very often, people will track the traffic on the site, and feel happy when that grows. But how useful is that? What if all of those visitors were living on another continent where you don’t do business? Perhaps you have keywords and content that’s causing an influx of high school students to end up on your page while researching an assignment.

Conversely, you can’t measure everything either. If we consider Google Analytics as an example, there are hundreds of metrics and reports to choose from. Asking your web team for everything will be a waste of everybody’s time. A few areas you may want to consider monitoring are:

  • Which sources are people coming from? Do they fit with any recruiting investments you’ve made?
  • How well are people engaging with your page? Do they stay on it for a long time or are they leaving right away?
  • Where do they move to after your Careers Page? To another page on your company’s website or do they leave it completely? Do they apply for jobs?
  • How many of your visitors are returning visitors versus new people?
  • What region are they from? Are your recruiting efforts being wasted by attracting people from the other side of the world?
  • How many people apply to jobs versus look at them? Are any people dropping off part way through the application process?

Once you understand your goals and are tracking them against specific metrics, you will quickly see more success in your Careers Page. If you’re still not seeing success in your recruiting goals, then your next step may be to re-evaluate your online goals, ensuring they all connect.

What goals do you have for your Careers Page? Share your experiences with our readers in the comments below!

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Optimize Your Job Postings for Maximum Exposure

The first step to reeling in top job applicants is to have the best possible job posting. Beyond  a detailed description that tells a job seeker what you need, a perfect job posting uses persuasive communication to grab their attention as well as optimizes tools to drive people to the posting so it gains more exposure.

All of a sudden, creating a great job posting seems more difficult than a standard cut and paste job… it requires thinking! Before you get too overwhelmed, have a look at this AkkenCloud infographic that was created in partnership with Ghergich&Co. It highlights the most important strategies for gaining maximum exposure for your job postings.

Click To Enlarge

How to Optimize Your Job Posts for Maximum Exposure

Via AkkenCloud

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How to Use Google Drive to Track Candidates

How to Use Google Drive to Track CandidatesApplicant tracking systems (ATSs) are great tools for recruiters. The right ATS provides capability to easily accept resumes from candidates, sort and screen through those resumes, and organize them so qualified candidates can be contacted for future opportunities. Unfortunately, small companies rarely have the resources for a dedicated in-house recruiter, let alone technology such as a sophisticated applicant tracking system. However, in today’s world of free technologies and cloud storage, there are still opportunities to create a makeshift ATS with similar capabilities, albeit missing some bells and whistles. Enter Google Drive!

If you’re not familiar with Google Drive and are interested in exploring it to create an ATS, here are a few quick tips to get you started:

  1. Create a Google Account. The days of needing a Gmail address to have a Google Account are long over. Anybody can create a Google account, using any email address, which will give you access to the hundreds of Google’s available services. For the sake of this post, Google Drive is the only service you need to worry about.
  2. Start Creating Folders. Just like Windows Explorer, where you may already store most of your documents, Google Drive lets you create folders and sub-folders. To organize it like an ATS, you may want to create folders for each department in your company, and then common positions within each department. From there, you can create a folder for individual candidates where you can store notes and resume versions.
  3. Share Folders. As long as your co-workers also have created a Google Account, you can give them access to all or specific folders so they can also browse resumes. If at any point they receive a resume that they think would be helpful for you in the future, they can save it into one of your folders for when you need to hire.
  4. Verify Folder Ownership. Creating folders and sharing documents can start to get out of control as different people become owners of different folders. For security purposes, consider organizing your structure so only one person in the organization (ideally somebody who will never leave) is the owner of all folders. This will simplify things down the road should a folder owner leave your company. You might also consider creating a generic account for the company that is not associated with a specific person and, therefore, is never closed.
  5. Start Searching. As you know, Google is pretty awesome when it comes to search capabilities, and they bring this knowledge into Google Drive. When you’re searching for a candidate, type your criteria in the search bar and see which resumes pop-up.
  6. Upgrade Your Google Drive. As noted, one person at the company is going to “own” all of the folders. This doesn’t mean they physically own anything, but it means their Google Account is the official home for all files. It won’t be long before the free space Google provides to that account is used up. Given the very low monthly costs of an upgrade (around $3/month) this would be a good move.

That’s it! Google Drive does not replace the amazing capabilities of a regular applicant tracking system, and will not come without its flaws; however, if you’re a small company looking for an applicant tracking solution, Google Drive is a great place to start. How do you organize your resumes without an ATS?

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How to Write a Job Description (Video)

A proper job description is helpful when posting jobs during the recruiting process, but their usefulness goes beyond hiring. A perfect and detailed job description will ensure all employees are completing their tasks and allow for accountability if something falls apart.

Writing job descriptions can be daunting, especially when you’re starting from scratch or dealing with extremely outdated files. If you’re working in HR, or any sort of management, and find yourself in this position, have a look at this short video from HRCloud. Not only is it entertaining, but it gives some quick pointers on the basic elements of a job description.

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How to Easily Pick the Best Candidate Based on the Resume

How to Easily Pick the Best Candidate Based on a Resume You have an important role that you need filled ASAP, or you’ve had a nagging job opening for the last month and half and don’t know where to start with that pile of resumes on your desk.  You know one thing, there’s no way you have time to interview them all, so how do you know which resumes are the best?  Is there a way to, quickly and effectively, spot the best candidate just by scanning their resumes?

Follow our foolproof 6 step process to save hours of interviews, background checks and reference calls wasted on candidates that were never going to be Mr. or Mrs. Right anyways, and streamline your hiring process by learning the best way to rank candidates just by looking at their resumes:

  1. List all of your requirements for the job, necessary skillsets, education or certifications, and minimum experience. Once you’ve got the full list, categorize them into mandatories, desirables, and bonus qualifications.  Set a minimum score or tally that you want, either for each section or for all of the mandatories, desirables and bonus qualifications in total.
  2. Without looking at any names, personal profiles or pictures, scan through the resumes and tally how each resume stacks up against the above requirements.
  3. Eliminate the resumes that don’t meet your standards from Step 1. Unless one of those resumes grows legs and walks back into your new pile, you’re done with that candidate.
  4. So now you’ve got a new stack, but how do you break ties or close ranks? Within your new, whittled down pile, look for measurable results listed in the resumes.  Search for achievements like awards, goals met, dollar value of projects, or number of people managed. This will give you a tangible view of the candidate’s past instead of waiting until the interview or reference check process to find out your Project Manager has only managed a 1 person, $1 project that was 1 month behind schedule.
  5. This next step is the personality/culture fit.  Every office has its own vibe; what types of personalities click in your office? Similar, to step 1, list some personality traits that you think would be beneficial to someone joining your office.
  6. Scan the profile/hobbies section or any other personal information section on the resumes. Sometimes the personal profile section can be a bit of a gloss-over section, but if you know what works in your corporate culture, don’t be shy to look for it.  For example, if your office is very green, look to see if anyone has noted any environmental volunteering on their resumes, or if you’re in an ultra-competitive company, see if anyone has marked down sports accomplishments.

By the time that you’ve run through this process you should have your own quick, clear ranking of your candidates, based on experience, results and personality fit, prior to interviewing them. We still recommend you go through the interview and reference check process, but this should help you get to that process faster and with a better view of what candidates to seriously consider!

Next time you’ve got an open position, try this process out and let us know how it worked!

 

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How to Attract Top Tech Talent (Infographic)

Finding IT professionals who meet the minimum requirements to fit your team and technology projects is challenging enough. Being able to attract the best talent so they want to work at your company is a complete other level. Sure, there are the standard perks that make anybody want to work at your company, but techies are different. The best ones are in high demand and you’re competing against organizations who are willing to pay big bucks for that talent.

We shared a post this past summer that provided tips for recruiting IT professionals and it received great feedback. So, when we came across this infographic from TalentPuzzle, even though it’s a few years old, we had to share it with our readers. Enjoy!

How to Attract Top Tech Talent (Infographic)

 

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How to Deal with an Arrogant Candidate During a Job Interview

How to Deal with an Arrogant Candidate During a Job Interview Job interviews can be a painful process in several ways. Sometimes you deal with smelly applicants, other times candidates are clueless and clearly falsified their resume, and, unfortunately, in even more situations, we end up having to put up with an arrogant, pompous narcissist.

There is a fine line between confidence and arrogance. Confident applicants are people who you want working with you. They believe in themselves and their abilities, and can back-up their claims with real life experience, references, and measurable proof. Arrogant people may possess those qualities, though it may be a false confidence if they can’t prove experience, and they come with other traits that will damage your corporate culture. To spot the poison before it sneaks onto your team, keep an eye out for certain behaviours during the interview. Some examples include:

  • Negativity towards past co-workers and managers
  • Inflating importance on past projects
  • Avoiding eye contact
  • Interrupting
  • Using condescending tones and language
  • Blaming others for past failures
  • Making you sell them on the open position, as though you may not be good enough for them

How do we deal with these pesky headaches? Here are 6 strategies you should consider — you’ll notice they all involve taking the high road (no matter how much you’d like to bring them down a notch).

  1. The first step is to determine if you’re talking to the “real” candidate. Physically you have the right person (hopefully) but are they nervous and not acting like their true selves? This can be confirmed through reference checks, but it also requires good judgement.
  2. Look at their skills and decide if what they bring to the table will out-weight the fact that they come with a not-so-good personality. Will your team be able to handle this person?
  3. Ask some questions about their current work environment to understand their present situation. A work environment filled with more arrogant people, coupled with a low self-esteem, can cause a nice person to act arrogant. Will your culture bring them back down to Earth?
  4. Remember that their accomplishments should speak for themselves. If your candidate seems to be overselling and trying to convince you they’re awesome, they’re probably not awesome.
  5. Get yourself through the interview and be polite. Job applicants are still considered customers, and they will talk about a negative experience. Being rude can cause you to lose future star applicants or customers.
  6. If all else fails and you’re ready to throw-up, just cut the interview short. This comes with pre-planning. Refrain from setting expectations by telling them how long an interview will be or exactly what will happen.

Every recruiter, HR professional and hiring manager has been through a dreadful interview with an arrogant person. Believe it or not, a 2012 study from University of Nebraska-Lincoln said job seekers are more successful when they’re narcissists, meaning these people are not going anywhere and have potential to make it into your company. While you can’t control arrogant people, you absolutely can control yourself. Have a look at the signs of arrogance above, and ask yourself: Do job applicants think you’re arrogant?