Our ongoing series called “Ask the Expert.”
This week’s question…
Q: I want to be strategic about the employees I hire and do it right the first time. How do I do that?
A: Excellent question! I have three words for you: Annual hiring plan. Setting your hiring intentions down in writing and being clear about the end goal are surefire ways to avoid costly errors and make sure everyone is pulling in the same direction.
Workforce development has many components. As with everything you do in life and in business, be clear with goals. What do you want to accomplish in the year ahead? Where does your company or department stand with revenue? How about clients? Are you sustaining your business or growing it?
Next you need to think about who you are serving, so you know what your structure should look like. What are your customers’ needs? For instance, if you operate a call center, do you receive a lot of calls from customers who speak a different language? If so, you should make sure you have enough bilingual employees to cover the workload.
Take a look at your talent development plans at the same time you are putting together your strategy for finding future hires. You must retain before you recruit. If your employees are jumping ship, find out why and come up with steps you can take to correct the problem. Recruiting into a toxic culture will just cause even more havoc.
Finally, put a process in place for everything. Create a timeline so you can make sure things are getting done and not sliding onto the back burner. Hold weekly accountability meetings to help everyone stay on track. If there are issues or roadblocks, address them quickly so you can regain your momentum. Document everything so you can see the steps you took that got you where you are.