Established businesses already have tools and policies in place for recruiting, hiring, and onboarding new employees. However, if you’ve just launched a startup or you’re expanding your small business, getting a handle on how to grow your team can be difficult.
The eight tools on this list can simplify the hiring process considerably. From recruitment and employee screening to improving your workplace environment, each of these tools can help you to establish and grow a successful team.
1. LinkedIn ‘recruiter’ tool
LinkedIn didn’t get a reputation for being a “professional social network” for nothing. While it sees a lot less daily activity than Facebook or Twitter, LinkedIn is still a terrific place to look for potential job candidates.
Sign up for LinkedIn’s “Recruiter” feature. With the Recruiter tool, you’ll get access to robust search features, browse the profile of any LinkedIn user, and target the candidates most likely to respond to your inquiries. Even without Recruiter, you can set up a business profile to draw more candidates to your brand and search groups to find strongly qualified and passionate candidates.
2. Job boards
For most modern businesses, public and private job boards are a must to drive the hiring process. Studies show that 15% of positions tend to be filled through job boards, so if you want to get the word out about an open position to the broadest group of people possible, job boards like CareerBuilder, Monster, and Indeed are a must. You can target niche or private job boards to find candidates with unique qualities or those who are working in specific industries.
3. Upwork and freelancer marketplaces
Freelancer marketplaces are a go-to resource when hiring for certain projects. A fair amount of your hiring process is probably going to be geared around building a team of part-time and full-time employees.
For one-off needs like website development, graphic design, or mobile app development, you might opt to save your resources by getting the work done on a contract basis. Having an account on a site like Upwork, where you can search, screen, and hire freelancers, will help to streamline this process.
4. Video interview software
Technology makes it possible to recreate the interview experience without having long and inconvenient in-person interviews. RecruitLoop recommended that companies start conducting their initial round of interviews with video chat tools like Skype.
With video chats, interviews feel more personal than they do over the phone. It’s still easy to keep them short if you know within a minute or two that you are speaking to a poor candidate. Keep a list of your best digital interviews and call the top candidates into your office for an in-person interview.
5. Skills testing software
Skills tests are becoming more common in employee screening processes everywhere. Resume dishonesty is rampant, and many companies (particularly smaller up-and-coming ones) can’t afford to make bad hiring decisions.
Skills tests help to make sure that top candidates have the abilities necessary to excel in a position. There are a lot of different tools on the market for pre-employment skills testing, so do a Google search to see if there is something out there that matches up with the key abilities you are seeking. Software to test for technical skills (i.e. coding, software knowledge, etc.) is especially easy to find.
6. Background check service
Technical skills aren’t the only thing that you need to screen for when you get to the final stages of the hiring process. You are also going to want to run a series of background checks to uncover any red flags that your applicant might be hiding. Has your applicant ever been convicted of a violent crime?
If you are filling a position that involves operating a vehicle, does the candidate’s driving record show that they are a safe bet? Did your applicant lie about any major resume information (e.g., college degrees, professional licenses, past jobs) that might change your opinion of them? A good background check company will let you order checks to screen for all of these issues and more—right from an easy-to-use website portal.
The push to build a successful team doesn’t end when you make your hiring decisions. Making sure that all of your team members work well together is just as important as hiring people with the right skills.
Apps like Basecamp can help to make project management easier, especially if your business is growing and you’re not very accustomed to the “team leader” role yet. With Basecamp, you can assign projects, share documents, have team conversations, and send notifications to your team members in one place. It’s a terrific way to keep everyone on the same page. With Basecamp and other similar apps, it’s even easy to make freelancers and remote workers feel like they are part of the team
If you want your team to keep growing and evolving, you need to be able to attract the best people to work at your company and keep them there long-term. Glassdoor is a useful tool for accomplishing these goals.
At first glance, Glassdoor can seem a lot like LinkedIn or a job board. You can create a free employer account, post jobs that you are looking to fill, and more. The draw of Glassdoor for many job seekers is that it gives employees a place to review their workplaces.
By setting up a Glassdoor account and then keeping track of your reviews, you can stay aware of how your employees are feeling about your company’s work environment. Good ratings and reviews will help you draw better prospects. Poor ratings and reviews, on the other hand, will tell you how to tweak things to create a better company culture.
From templates for writing the perfect job description to HR tools that help track employees over time, a quick search will yield countless additional resources designed to help you grow a successful team. The eight tools in this list are a good place to start as you take your critical first steps.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Michael Klazema has been developing products for pre-employment screening and improving online customer experiences in the background screening industry since 2009. He is the lead author and editor for backgroundchecks.com. He lives in Dallas, TX with his family and enjoys the rich culinary histories of various old and new world countries. Connect with @BackgroundBiz on Twitter.
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