What does it take to find hardworking, creative and productive new staff?

Tim English Productivity, Recruitment

GET THE INTERVIEW RIGHT FOR SURE, but onboarding and great feedback in the first few weeks is crucial. Tim English, founder of GBB Coaching & Consultancy, shares his advice after more than 10 years of professional experience in the retail and service sector. “Use a competency model to recruit – it doesn’t have to be too formal but you must think about what you really need in the role,” he says.

List out the skills that are needed to be successful in the role – think about your current and previous employees, what made someone successful. These are the gateway competencies. At interview, once you’ve established credible examples of these qualities in action, then you can move to getting to know the individual and thinking about how well they would fit your team and represent your business. But if they don’t have those gateway competencies – don’t think you’ll be able to train them once they start.

“Be careful of buddying-up new or temporary people with your existing longterm people”

“Be careful of buddying-up new or temporary people with your existing longterm people,” says Tim. This can seem like a good way of getting new staff up to speed, but what really happens is you buddy them up with your poorer performers rather than your top performers. You look across your
team and think: “Okay, who’s got time to train the new person up?”

It’s not going to be the best performers, they’re busy working with customers. You choose the person who looks like they’ve got time. Unfortunately, your eager new employee just learns bad habits from your least productive people. It’s an easy trap to fall into that we see time and again.

Second, you’re also asking your long term staff to do an extra job by training the new person. Unless this is something an individual has an absolute passion for, and you are going to give it to them as a reward, I would avoid doing it. Make sure you have a proper plan in place as to how you will get new people up to speed, how you will support them and share that plan with your whole team so they feel valued and can see how you are supporting their new colleague.