Hiring top talent part 1: 3 keys to hiring the best talent

| By:
Brett Cheloff

The importance of hiring the right person is hard to put into words. Recruiting and retaining top talent can be the key to success for a lot of companies as they establish themselves and grow. Technology workers are a hot commodity in today’s market, with less than 3% unemployment, which means it’s getting harder to find and keep your best employees.

That struggle is starting to show when it comes to the people responsible for filling tech roles. When Indeed surveyed tech hiring managers, 83% percent of the survey’s respondents felt like they were losing out on real revenue and serious productivity, not to mention burning out their current team, thanks to a serious shortage in top talent.

Every company is a tech company

The issue of hiring the best talent applies to more than just technology companies. In today’s business landscape, every company is bringing on technology workers to help move them into an increasingly tech-dependent business world. Learning how to recruit top talent that not only has the right skillset but fits in with your internal culture sounds like a big ask.

1. Interview best practices

Conducting a useful interview tests the skills of even a seasoned hiring manager. The truth is that the selection process is about a lot more than just experience. You’re also looking for someone who brings something unique to the role, and you want to make sure your choice fits smoothly into the cultural dynamic of not only the team, but the company as a whole.

What to do? Focus your interview questions on more than just skillsets or the standard “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” Consider more in-depth questions that your applicants might not have prepared for, like “What do you do that other people find annoying?” or “Tell me about someone who is better than you at something you care about.” There’s no perfect answer here, just a selection process that lets you see how a candidate responds to an unexpected question, and whether they’ll be as honest about their faults as they are about their strengths.

2. Onboarding processes

Your onboarding process sets the tone for an employee’s entire career with your company. You want to make sure that it’s smooth, organized, well thought out, and really prepares your new employee to do their job well. After all, if you set them up to fail from day one, they’ll probably do exactly that. If your onboarding process gets them started on the right foot, they’ll be more likely to stay with the company for the long haul.

What to do? Start by talking to your existing team. What do they wish they’d know when they were onboarding? What worked for them, and what seemed to be missing? Talk to your newer team members and your veterans, and make sure you’re keeping track of how their onboarding could have been better. Armed with the information from your existing team, you can put together a documented onboarding plan that fills in the blanks for new hires. As each person comes on, don’t be afraid to update the onboarding document as you learn new things or processes/company details change.

3. Offboarding improvements

Let’s be honest, firing someone feels bad. But it’s also a necessary part of keeping your team strong, happy, and productive. If you can’t get someone out the door when the time is right, they poison the team with negativity that eventually will drive away even your most loyal, valuable employees. So, how do you know when it’s time to let someone go? Without a defined process in place for handling offboarding, you’re stuck with employees whose issues are bringing the whole team down because you can’t figure out how to fire them, or you’re letting people go without following a process that makes the reasons clear. Either way, you’ll be left with a team that feels less than secure.

What to do? Have a plan in place to identify team members who aren’t a good fit, document their issues, and offboard them when the time comes. Make sure your plan not only covers the human resources details of how and when to offboard an employee, but also what happens after they’re gone. Don’t leave your existing team holding the responsibilities for their own jobs plus the role that’s been abandoned without a documented plan for how everything is split, tracked, and finally taken over by a new hire.

But wait, there’s more!

The truth is that every day, you and your team are facing change. You can adapt to it, roll with it, and allow your team to do the same, and that will not only cut down on the stress change can bring, but will let you constantly find flaws and adapt to improve them. With an internal culture that embraces change, you’ll create a team capable of constant evolution that keeps you, your team, and your business moving forward. You’ll also make it possible for team members to speak up when there’s an issue, and a change-capable atmosphere means you’ll be able to pivot faster to address those issues.

That openness to change will also help encourage an atmosphere of radical candor, where your team feels empowered to talk to you, their peers, and others in the company about what’s truly going on. They can bring up issues, propose solutions, and feel safe talking about their biggest (and smallest) issues. At the end of the day, if you’re not talking about problems, they never get solved, so encourage an open discussion of policies, procedures, and ways to make work better for everyone on the team.

Keep learning

That’s a lot of information about recruiting processes, hiring practices, and retaining top talent. But there’s so much more you could learn about the advantages of hiring the right person. If you’re looking for that perfect fit, it’s time to register for this year’s Automation Nation. We’ll be focusing sessions on how successful companies are finding and retaining top tech talent and creating an environment for their teams to thrive.

This year’s Automation Nation is going to be full of product insights and thought leadership topics designed to help you do your job better and get more from your ConnectWise experience. Don’t miss out!