Thursday, August 22, 2013

Finding Capable Employees Is Greatest Management Hurdle for Small Businesses

When it comes to running a successful business, finding a highly skilled team of employees is crucial. But it isn't always easy. In a recent survey by RobertHalf, six in 10 (60 percent) small business owners said the biggest challenge in hiring or managing staff is finding skilled professionals for the job. About one in five (19 percent) cited maintaining employee morale and productivity as the chief concern.
The survey was developed by Robert Half, the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on interviews with more than 300 small business owners and managers from a stratified random sample of companies with less than 100 employees in the United States.
Small business owners and managers were asked, "Which one of the following is your company's greatest challenge when it comes to hiring and managing staff?" Their responses:
Finding skilled workers - 60%
Maintaining employee morale and productivity - 19%
Managing difficult employees - 8%
Retaining staff - 7%
Something else - 6%
Human Resources Kit For Dummies®, 3rd Edition (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.) by Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half, can help small business owners enhance their recruiting efforts and position themselves as employers of choice. Following are four tips from the book:
Make your company stand out. Small businesses offer advantages that larger companies cannot match. Emphasize the potential for new hires to wear multiple hats and advance quickly. Also, highlight the benefits of working with a small, close-knit group, which may be less common at bigger corporations.
Have an accurate job description. The description of your open position should be specific and identify the must-haves for the job. If a description is too broad or doesn't adequately convey the position's requirements, you run the risk of receiving an overabundance of resumes from unqualified candidates. It's better to have five applicants who definitely deserve an interview than 100 who don't.
Network. Participate in local professional association or community groups to build your personal network. Also, ask your existing employees to provide referrals. Employees tend to recommend strong candidates, since they don't want to tarnish their reputation by recommending professionals who are unequipped for the job.
Work with recruiters. Professional staffing firms can significantly reduce the amount of time it takes to find a qualified applicant. Look for ones that specialize in the field for which you are hiring. For example, if you are hiring an accountant, work with a firm that specializes in filling accounting and finance roles.
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Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tipping The Scales With Training

Companies that invest in their employees' professional development have an edge when recruiting IT professionals, new research from Robert Half Technology suggests. Sixty-eight percent of IT workers surveyed said the ability to acquire new skills is very important when evaluating a job opportunity.

Additionally, 64 percent of respondents said they are very concerned about keeping their skills current in the next three to five years. However, in a separate Robert Half Technology survey, 44 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) said their companies do not have training and development programs for IT professionals.

The IT worker survey was developed and conducted by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of information technology (IT) professionals on a project and full-time basis. The responses are from more than 7,500 IT workers to a web survey. The CIO survey was developed by Robert Half Technology and conducted by an independent research firm. The survey is based on more than 2,300 telephone interviews with CIOs from a random sample of U.S. companies in 23 major metro areas with 100 or more employees.

IT workers were asked, "When evaluating a job opportunity, how important is the ability to gain new skills in that role?" Their responses:  
Very important - 68%
Somewhat important - 30%
Not important - 2%

IT workers were also asked, "How concerned are you about keeping your skills current in the next three to five years?" Their responses:
Very concerned - 64%
Somewhat concerned - 29%
Not concerned - 7%

CIOs were asked, "Does your organization have a training and development program for IT professionals?" Their responses:
Yes - 55%
No - 44%
Don't know - 1%

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