Starting a new business can be a daunting task, but with a bit of determination and elbow grease, your dream of becoming your own boss can become a reality. But it can also mean that you’ll be someone else’s boss. When it comes to hiring good, trustworthy employees, you may wonder where to begin.
After all, it’s been estimated that the cost of recruiting, hiring, and training a new employee is approximately $4,000, so most employers want to avoid the expensive pitfalls of hiring bad employees. In turn, they will also avoid a high turnover rate, workplace theft, and absenteeism. So, use the following guidelines when hiring your own employees to ensure the (continued) success of your business:
1- Do your homework.
Sure, that’s perfect, gleaming resume you just read may make you want to pick up the phone and offer the applicant a position at your company, but hold on just a moment. Unfortunately, over 40% of resumes are padded with bogus facts, so you need to be cautious. The truth is, you can’t trust just anyone.
So, complete (possibly with the help of a third-party company) a thorough background check, including digging through education records, credit history, and criminal incarceration records, with the applicant’s consent, of course. A few legitimate companies to use are Sterling Testing Systems, Intellicorp Background Scanning, and Krollworldwide. Just be aware that there will be a cost associated with them. (Better safe than sorry, right?)
2- Test for illegal substances.
In the United States, 250,000 people die annually from alcohol or drug-related deaths. So, not only is it smart to test applicants for drugs, but it’s just good business.
Namely, 65% of workplace accidents are related to substance abuse. So, make pre-employment and random drug testing mandatory to avoid future issues and worker’s compensation claims.
3- Get legal and keep records.
If you have a new business, you’ll soon realize how important it is to keep employee files – for your own reference and for the sake of legalities (or the Department of Labor). So, begin compiling your new hire’s file by including the following:
- Employee’s full name (spelled correctly) and social security number.
- Mailing address, including ZIP code.
- Birth date, especially if the employee is younger than 19 (and a copy of their work permit, if applicable).
- Gender and occupation (job title).
- Time of day and hours employee works.
- How often the employee’s wages are paid.
- Regular hourly pay rate.
- Total “straight time” and overtime earnings for each workweek.
- All additions to or deductions taken from employee’s pay.
- Total wages paid each pay period.
- Date of payment and the pay period covered by the each payment.
Also, you’ll need these documents for tax purposes: A W4 form, W2 form, an I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form for every new hire, and taxes on 1099 workers (independent contractors) that have been sent to the federal government. Additionally, you’ll need proof of worker’s compensation insurance (if applicable), state and federal unemployment taxes, and information on the healthcare plan you offer. If you are ever audited by the IRS or other company, you’ll be glad that all of your records are in one place.
4- Train your employees.
You may have had a job where, after a day or two of training, your boss expected you to be able to competently perform your duties. Usually, this isn’t possible after such a brief time and lack of training. So, take your time when training your employees and let them know that it’s okay to ask questions or ask for help.
Also, be patient and provide sales negotiation training if necessary to reinforce customer service skills and to improve selling skills, in addition to video and computer training.
5- Implement software and tools to make their job easier.
It’s nearly impossible to complete work in a timely, efficient manner if your computer system lags or is constantly crashing. So, be sure you have the most up to date software to avoid frustration and issues with deadlines. Also, consider tools to further help efficiency, such as workflow software (an application that automates business processes).
Summarily, employees can strengthen or have a negative impact on your business, so remember that a good employee will be well-worth the cost. Also, developing a good relationship with employees will only benefit your business in the long-term.
About the Author:
Lewis Robinson is a business consultant specializing in social media marketing, CRM, and sales. He’s begun multiple corporations and currently freelances as a writer and business consultant.