Companies often struggle with timing when it comes to hiring. Do you hire ahead of the work or when you are in immediate need? Employers also need to take a hard look at their organization to determine what roles they actually need to fill. Issues companies needs to address before hiring include:
- Has the business need been clearly defined?
- Is it the right time?
- Are the right processes in place?
- What type of new hire makes the most sense?
- Is there a current employee who could take on the role?
- Who needs to be in place before making this hire?
These answers have more to do with your company than any set formula, but that doesn’t mean you can’t explore the ins and outs of knowing when to know when hiring is the answer. With this in mind be sure to consider the following guidelines for making these decisions.
Clearly Define The Business Need
Have you clearly defined the business need that is being fulfilled by this position, or positions? What are the goals and objectives for both the business and the people who will be implementing them? Before you go any further you have to be clear on your answers to these questions. Your business can’t successfully, or effectively, deliver products or profits, without clearly defining the need.
This is also a good time to ask yourself what kind of business you want to have. As Inc. suggests in 8 Questions to Ask Before You Hire More Employees, you may not want a big business. But do you know what you want? Or what parts of the business you enjoy working on? Do you want to be more hands-on or do you prefer delegating and focusing on the big picture? Spend some time thinking through these questions, and when you’re done, if you want to get bigger, ask yourself the following…
Don’t Let Growth Get in The Way of Running Your Business Correctly
Once you feel clear about the need, ask yourself if this is actually the right time for your business to grow. As the Fortune article Watch Out For The Five Hazards of Growing Too Quickly, articulates, growth can get in the way of correctly running your business. So, before you move forward ask yourself questions such as:
- Do you understand your financial data? Another way to say this, is do you know the strengths and weaknesses of your business? If you don’t, get help understanding these things before you move forward.
- How will you stay connected to your customer base? Even as you grow, customers have to remain front and center – are you prepared to address this?
- Do you have systems in place to collect what people owe you in a timely manner? You’re only inviting problems if you’re not able to do so.
Finally, do you actually need to make more hires? Or can you take on more tasks yourself along with distributing increased responsibilities across existing staff? If the answer to this question is more hires, are you prepared to make good hires? If you’re not certain, consider the following…
Put the Right Processes… and People in Place
You must get everyone in the organization on the same page. You must also know who needs to be part of the process. Too often candidates get mixed messages throughout the hiring process because different people have different views of the role. Once the right people are involved, understand the role you’re looking to fill, define the interview process and start pipelining candidates. After the first 2-3 interviews ask yourself if you need to recalibrate. How does the pool of candidates compare to the needs of the company? If there is a mismatch, revisit your criteria and ask yourself if they need to be adjusted.
Also, are you prepared to onboard the candidates you do hire? What’s in place in terms of orientation, training, space, and equipment? And who’s going to be responsible for these steps? Even then, however you may be getting ahead of yourself. Let’s take a brief step back and ask the following questions…
Hiring at the right time is all about knowing your business, and with this in mind, consider the following as you look to make new hires:
Clearly define your business need… and then ask yourself whether it’s the right time to grow.
If it is, ask yourself this…
Is everyone on the same page, and are the proper hiring processes in place?
Do you know what the right hire looks like and is that person already in the organization?
Do you need to revisit the answers the questions if you’re not finding the types of candidates you seek?
Do you need outside help?