A PA's Guide to Hiring

lucywebrecruit
Marketing Communications Executive
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As a small business owner, do you ask your PA to co-ordinate your business' hiring? If so, you may want to share some of the below tips. 

More often than not, administrators and PAs are called upon to hire personnel for a variety of positions on behalf of their MD – particularly within SMEs.

Whilst we understand that smaller companies can often find it hard to recruit, hiring employees is a critical activity for any organisation, regardless of their size or the services they deliver. But with less staff to manage the process or restricted budgets, it can easily be a costly and time- consuming task.

However, there are tools available to assist with the process. To meet the challenge of finding and hiring the right person for the right job, here are some practical tips to help ‘non’ hiring managers, such as PAs, achieve effective recruitment and selection.

Understand the job: Finding the right people to hire is much easier when you understand the job you want to fill. Ask yourself, what kind of person does best in the job? This kind of analysis will help drive your selection standards – and if you do a good job at this first step, the rest of the hiring process will be faster, easier and yield a better match.

Practical Tip: Ask someone who is already doing the job what’s to be expected and learn from them. Observe their behaviour, ask questions and get a clear understanding of what characteristics make them effective in their job. 

Drafting a job ad: Think of the job description as a ‘snapshot’ of the role you’re looking to fill. Clearly and concisely communicate the responsibilities and tasks the job entails, as well as basic requirements, such as skills or qualifications.

A survey by webrecruit looked into what candidates’ expect to see in a job advertisement. In order of importance, the results revealed they would most like to see responsibilities, followed by location, salary, essential criteria, desirable criteria, benefits and the working hours.

Practical Tip: When drafting your job ad, avoid internal ljargon. Instead, look at the types of words candidates use within the industry and make sure your title reflects one that is wholly recognised. 

Social Recruiting: Even as a small business, you should not overlook the power of social recruiting. The potential for sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to play a role in your recruitment strategy increases as millions of potential employees join these sites each year. What’s more – it’s free.

Practical Tip: Leverage the transparency of social networks by sharing your job within your career or company pages. Ask employees to share your vacancy within their social networks. After all, it’s not what you know, but who you know.

Skills Tests: If you find yourself with a deluge of applications and not enough time to go through them, online skills test or eSkills assessments can help you to accurately evaluate candidates’ suitability for a role before inviting them to interview. Using tailored or custom tests, you can identify the right candidates, whilst providing a benchmark to assess job seekers against.

Practical Tip: The easiest way to see how online skills testing could improve your hiring process is to try one yourself. View our taster test here.

Automated Video Interviewing:  Too often than not, one of the biggest hiring challenges within small companies is finding the time to devote to their recruitment strategy, particularly when interviewing. If you need assistance with the interviewing of candidates, you may benefit from automated online video interviewing. Automated video interviews replace the need for first round phone and on-site interviews – saving you time and money.

Practical Tip: It’s a little bit cheeky, but when looking back at the recorded video interviews, have a sneaky peak at the candidates’ living arrangements. Is there anything that could be deemed unprofessional showing up? I.e. Is their desk area clean? This will tell you a lot about a person’s habits, such as organisational skills and attention to detail.

Whilst these tips won’t solve all your recruitment challenges, they will point you in the right direction for an easier and more successful hire – not to mention how much you’ll impress your boss with the time and money you save in the process.

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