Recruiting Employees

      Ideas for enticing and signing on workers. July 24, 2001

Any ideas on how to recruit employees? We're getting desperate. We've advertised in newspapers, but get hardly any calls.

Forum Responses
Do your ads offer help with relocation? Many people don't answer ads that don't mention this. They'll assume it is not part of the package. Do you mention a benefits package, H&A, etc.? That is always a good 'teaser'.

You could include a telephone number to call for information. The call volume will show you the level of general interest, and if the message is on target. Do not put a "live" operator on these calls, as the volume, hopefully, will be great. You want to keep the line free for when a real "catch" tries to call.

Many of the canned computer software programs have an "answering machine" function with a switchboard feature. You can go as elaborate as you wish, including "Q&A" screening features. Let the answering machine take the calls, describe the opportunities and allow the caller to leave a message describing their interest. Be sure to note the 24/7 availability of the system.

Don't overlook the people who are talented in other areas, but lack specific cabinet skills. Retirees often seek a flexible job and have a solid work ethic. You can't train someone to show up, work the full day, and not steal from you.

Survey your current employees to find out what they like about working for you.

My guys said they like the:
Friendly work environment (this was # 1)
Health insurance
Bonuses for production
Steady employment

I put these items in an ad and it helped attract people.

I have had many employees over the years, but the best ones by far were all older retirees or otherwise. They bring a level of maturity to the shop the younger guys pick up on. Around here, we have OWES (Older Workers Employment Service). It is a state agency. Check your county human services department to see if you have one in your area. Older workers many times do not want or need health insurance. They also are not looking to be your competition. And they have a work ethic.

If I were an experienced worker and was looking for a job at a cabinet shop, I would not read the classifieds and if I got an automated interview I'd hang up and think bad things. On the other hand, if I was toolin' down the freeway and crankin' my favorite radio station and heard a cool ad--good pay, excellent benefits, steady employment, great place to work, I would make it my mission to work for you.

Money talks. Offer a sign-on bonus, offer your workers a decent referral bonus to enlist their help in recruiting (they would rather keep getting OT than bring in competition), make it worth their effort.

Most importantly, would you work for someone who has a reputation for not treating his help with dignity? Treat them well.

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