Posts Tagged ‘recruitment’

3 Tips To Diversifying Your Recruiting Efforts

Thursday, October 29th, 2015

recruitingIn today’s post, CAI’s HR on Demand Consultant Cynthia Daniel shares 3 strategies to help your business freshen up its recruiting process and secure a wider range of talented candidates.

As a recruiter, my goal is to locate the best qualified candidate for each position. Failure to do so may result in our clients having employee nightmares for weeks, months or even years! While it would be very easy to rely on the same old methods of recruiting for each organization, using a variety of sources and tactics has proved invaluable to me as well as our clients!

3 ways to recruit the best candidates:

  • Pay attention to the role that you are recruiting for. When recruiting for a new position it always helps to assess the situation. We know that if we are looking for our next Vice President, we probably won’t be able to look in the same place as we would for our Forklift Driver. Knowing where to look is key to finding that right person quickly!
  • Don’t forget about your current employees. Your internal employees may be looking for developmental opportunities within your company, so don’t count them out just yet.  Know your workforce and who may be qualified for some of your open positions and get your managers involved if you need to as well.  Recruiting internally can cut costs, boost employee morale and productivity!
  • External recruiting, however, is still a great choice when you lack qualified internal employees.  There are many sources you can pull from including local universities, unemployment offices, veteran’s offices, professional membership organizations, LinkedIn, college alumni offices, search firms, internet job banks, outplacement agencies, and many more. Yes, some of these outlets can be pricey, so know your budget and what you can afford.  But in turn, some are free or have minimal costs associated with them.

If you’re using the same old tactic over and over again and it’s not producing the candidates you want… maybe it’s time to try something new. You must think differently and act differently to get different results. What are you doing to think differently and act differently about recruiting and hiring? If you aren’t thinking and acting differently, I can guarantee you that someone else is.

CAI’s recruiting team is dedicated to helping you with all of your recruiting needs. Whether it’s learning more about strategies for recruiting great talent, having us recruit for and fill your vacant positions, or simply answering a few questions, we’re here to help! Please feel free to contact our recruiting team directly at 996-899-1140 or




Recruiting The Best and Brightest

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Employees are the framework for all organizations, and represent a driving force behind the success or failure of a company. As one of the key elements for long-term success, it’s critical that companies place focus on the hiring process, and strive to recruit the most intelligent, motivated and versatile employees available.

How can companies position themselves to not only recruit employees, but attract top talent?

Evaluate Current Processes

First, evaluate the current selection process your organization has in place. Because of convenience, countless job seekers will come through newspaper ads and website postings, but by using additional outlets (social media, executive staffing firms, industry professional associations, conferences and online boards) a new kind of job candidate can be uncovered. By extending your network pool, you can build relationships, and much can be said about hiring a person whose character you know, instead of hiring solely on Internet credentials.

Provide Thorough Job Descriptions

Once you are recruiting within the correct market, make sure that your company job descriptions are clearly outlined. A detailed description of requirements and responsibilities is imperative, as it’s a way for you to label and define the expectations of future candidates. Don’t wait until the interview process to discover your interviewee doesn’t meet the basic qualifications. If you allow the job description to cover basic requirements, your interview process will reveal the candidate whose skills stand out above the rest.

Keep an Eye on Talent

To recruit the best and brightest, employers must always keep an eye open for top talent. Firms with exceptional recruiting results always monitor potential applicants, whether hiring or not. Through continuous evaluation of the candidate pool, organizations have a better idea of who to select when the time comes. By keeping a running list of candidates, you can keep a watch over top talent and avoid hiring at the last minute.

Monitor your Company Brand

An important piece of the puzzle that is often overlooked is to monitor your company brand. What people say outside of the company walls matters immensely. The overall public perception of your organization will be a leading determinant for many candidates. Outside of salary and job growth, employees want to be part of a company whose culture is respected and valued. Treat your current staff well, as they will be your spokespersons to others about what makes your organization great.

For additional information about recruiting, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.

Photo Source: Argonne National Laboratory

Basic Strategies for Succession Planning

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

Succession planning is an important process that should be carried out by a management team to ensure the continuity of an organization’s business plan.  The key goal is to identify, recruit and prepare the most talented employees for key roles within the company.  These carefully selected employees should be provided with the education and training they need to achieve and succeed at higher levels and with broader responsibilities.

Through the planning process, these highly recognized employees will appreciate the time, attention and development invested in them, resulting in key employee retention, which is absolutely necessary to ensure the effectiveness of succession plans.

Succession plans vary by company, business plan, and the availability of talented employees.  However, every succession plan should follow some basic strategies:

  • Monitoring Future Needs – Tomorrow’s key roles may not even exist in today’s organization
  • Talent Assessment – Develop a way to identify your most talented employees
  • Hire for the Gaps – Identify the roles that are beyond the capabilities of your current employees and hire to fill those skill gaps
  • Share Your Plan – Key employees should understand early in their careers the special path you have put them on and the importance of the role they are being developed to fill
  • Use Available Technology – Track and monitor the training and development of high potentials
  • Create Developmental Opportunities – Seek out education that offers executive training and mentoring
  • Measure Performance – Challenge your key employees, but measure them fairly as you are asking them to stretch beyond normal expectations

Remember, effective succession planning is a journey, not a destination. Once you have the plan in place, it requires constant and consistent monitoring for adjustments and improvements as the organization changes over time.

If you need further information or assistance with succession planning for your organization, contact Molly Hegeman, CAI’s Director of HR Services, at (919) 878-9222, (336) 668-7746 or

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Measuring the Impact of the HIRE Act

Monday, July 26th, 2010

It has been four months since President Obama signed the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act, aimed at presenting hiring incentives to re-establish jobs lost throughout the recent recession. The HIRE Act focuses on two main incentives – the payroll tax relief and the worker retention tax credit – that reward your company for hiring workers quickly and keeping these employees for a long time, while offering you a chance to avoid the 6.2 percent Social Security tax. But is it really meeting its goals? So far, it’s hard to judge.

North Carolina businessman Andy Warlick, president and chief executive of Parkdale Mills in Gastonia, claims he recently hired 30 workers eligible for the HIRE Act tax exemptions, but he acknowledged he could not say the benefit was actually responsible for his decision to expand his staff, according to a New York Times blog.  He said he does appreciate claiming the credit because it lowers his operating costs and encourages him to keep his operations in America.

The Treasury department has credited 4.5 million workers hired due to the act and estimated savings to employers so far to be at $8 billion. However, Treasury officials are having a challenging time determining whether the tax credit actually induces hiring, rather than just being claimed for people who would have gotten jobs anyway. It also believes the program is not widely known to businesses eligible to participate in it.

If you are interested in finding out if and how your company is eligible to use this credit, read our previous blog on “HIRE Act Can Save Employers Money This Year.”  The program may be extended into the next year, but that plan will have to be approved by Congress, and the results from this year could determine whether that will become a reality.

For more details, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.

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Important Steps to Follow When Hiring Employees

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

Most companies feel that planning to hire new employees is an obvious indicator to the outside world of their success.  It shows their products and/or services are in such demand that they need a bigger pool of labor to maintain their output or increase it.  But sometimes hiring occurs without the reasons behind it fully being explored. When this happens it can cost your company a lot of money.

You need to keep the following steps in mind to reduce the risk of a bad hire. These are essential concerns when considering opening a position at your organization.

1)     Make sure you know why you need to hire the employee.

You should not be looking for someone just for the sake of filling a job.  Ask yourself these questions:

  • Will this position be needed for your company in the long term, or will its responsibilities change in the future?
  • If this is a new position, do you know why it was created and what its responsibilities entail?
  • Do you know the job duties to be performed by the employee on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis?

If the answer is “No” to any of these, you need to rethink your decision for this new hire.  It may not be worth investing in a full-time or even part-time employee to fulfill what you need upon review. You may be able to achieve what you want with in-house talent or outside contractors.

2)     Know and follow federal and state guidelines for the hiring process.

Do you know the rules for what you can and cannot ask a job candidate during an interview regarding his or her life away from the job?  What about the state and federal forms you need to complete for the person when he or she is hired?  And are you ready to handle an employee who will cite North Carolina labor laws when questioning you about your policies?

Companies with full-sized HR departments know the answers to these questions, but even medium-sized ones often do not.  This ignorance can not only discourage good workers from joining your company, it can result in a lawsuit for you because you did not follow these laws or EEOC guidelines.

3)     Establish exactly what you want from a candidate in the available position.

You should have a definite idea about what minimal educational background and experience you want for someone to assume the role.  The same should apply to the salary and benefits you are offering – if the applicant wants more, how far are you willing to bend to meet the request without hurting the company? You should also know what kind of personality will fit well with your company’s culture, and what kind will not.  Assessments can be very useful in helping determine whether a job candidate is a good fit for your organization.

While it does help to have recommendations from your social network for a new employee, it should not be the sole determining factor in hiring the person.  Check the applicant’s references to get a sense of how he or she performed in previous positions. Also, background checks are a must for any employer that is hiring these days.

No one can guarantee that these steps will prevent a bad hire for a company. But by judiciously applying them, you will be greatly increasing the likelihood of finding an appropriate candidate for your job.

For more details, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.

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Better Performance Management Starts with Better Hiring Decisions

Monday, July 12th, 2010

When people ask for guidance on designing their performance management programs, the main area of focus is invariably the employee evaluation process.  The question that seems to be on most people’s minds is, “What is the best way to design an effective evaluation form?”    While it is important to have an effective measurement instrument with which to evaluate your employees’ performance, it is only one part of a system for ensuring your organization hires, trains and keeps the best employees possible.  We should also spend time examining the hiring and selection process.

Hiring decisions are, in effect, problems.  By this, I mean you are making a decision with limited information involving doubt or uncertainty.  The best way to make a decision is to limit the amount of uncertainty involved in the process.  Through the use of applications, résumés, recommendations and interviews, you are hoping to decrease the uncertainty in the process and increase the probability that the choice you make will be the correct one.

However, we frequently make mistakes.  It is possible that we pass on a good applicant or hire a bad one.  These mistakes are bound to happen; we are not perfect.  A way to reduce the chance of error is to make a better system for collecting information for the hiring process—not just from the traditional means mentioned previously.

What may be the most important part of the entire performance management process is what can best be described as the control mechanism for the system.  Every organization has control systems that measure such things as defects, scarp, employee attendance, etc.   How many organizations have instituted a means to measure the effectiveness of their performance management systems?

When employees leave, some organizations do employee exit surveys.  But, how does that information serve the organization?  You know why they left, but how does that information help you improve the process?

Ideally, you would want to know information that would help you make better hiring decisions in the future.  Use turnover as a chance to collect information and diagnose where mistakes were made in the process.

When conducting the “autopsy” after an employee leaves the organization, some things to consider are:

  • Do you have a true understanding of what the job entails?
  • Are the job requirements— the knowledge, skills and abilities to do the job effectively—accurate?
  • Can you identify the mismatch between the applicant and the job?
  • Do we have the right people involved in the hiring process and making the final decisions?
  • What information may have led you to hiring that person in the first place?  Do we have any organizational biases in the hiring process?  (Educational level, for instance)

Effective managers and supervisors recognize that failure oftentimes can be useful in helping improve performance.  Use the information you collect from your “failures” to improve your hiring process.  Continuous improvement relies heavily on feedback, and this should apply to your hiring process as well.

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Talent Management: 4 Practical Steps You Can Take Now

Wednesday, June 30th, 2010

Recent survey data released by Mercer offers a peek into the timing and competitiveness of what is likely to be an upcoming war for talent.  You may be saying to yourself, “War for talent?  What?  Our business is still suffering from the recession!”  Point taken.

Yet, to ensure the long-term success of your organization, now is the time to start focusing on keeping the top talent in your organization on your bus, and planning to invite other top talent in the marketplace to climb on board with you.

In May 2010, Mercer polled HR and talent management leaders at more than 400 U.S. organizations as part of its annual Future of Talent Management survey.  As to the current status of the businesses:

  • 22 percent were never out of growth mode and were not significantly affected by the economic downturn
  • 15 percent have emerged from the recession and are in growth mode
  • 37 percent are emerging from the recession and preparing for growth
  • 25 percent are still in recession mode

So, even if you are among the 25 percent of companies still in recession mode, 75 percent of businesses are already planning to acquire your top talent and/or the additional talent in the marketplace that could help drive your business results in the future.

In addition, more than half of the surveyed employers (51 percent) rate talent management as a top priority in their organization today, and 76 percent expect it to be a top priority within the next three to five years.  Even more telling, a full 97 percent expect an increase in competition for key talent in that same three- to five-year horizon, with 58 percent anticipating a significant increase in competition for the key talent their organizations need to succeed.

What types of talent management activities can you undertake now to help you retain your best employees and position your organization to be an attractive option for future employees?

  1. Identify the top employees in your organization.  Talk to them and tell them they are an essential part of your future.  Ask them what is most important to them in the employer-employee relationship.  It may not be what you think.
  2. Determine what measures you can take now to reward employees who have remained solid performers as your organization has been affected by the recession.  If pay raises are not possible, use your discussions with employees to identify non-monetary rewards that will be perceived as an excellent benefit.
  3. Start looking for skill gaps in your organization.  Does each one of your employees have the training they need to be successful in their job?  What will it take to get them there?
  4. Plot out a growth strategy.  If your business grew by 10 percent, what workforce adjustments would have to be made to accommodate that growth?  What would be your priority order for hiring?

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Negligent Hiring and Retention Cost You In More Ways Than One

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

There were 34 North Carolina employees who sustained fatal occupational injuries caused by assaults and other violent acts in 2008 (the most recent year for which data is available), according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries. Violence was the second highest cause of death listed in the results, and that total amounted to just one less than the combined number of employees who died on the job from contacts with objects and equipment, exposure to harmful substances or environments, and fires or explosions.

This figure is important because employers can and have been held liable for employees who demonstrate harmful tendencies such as violence at work and are retained without receiving appropriate discipline, supervision or termination. These individuals may have had a history that indicates a propensity for workplace violence, such as a criminal record that was overlooked during a background check, which could invite even more liability to your organization.

Under North Carolina law, an employer who knew, or should have known, of an applicant’s or employee’s dangerous or offensive characteristics may be held liable for the damages that the employee causes. If a reasonable investigation of the employee’s past would have revealed the potential problems, liability is possible.

People lie during job interviews. They make up claims of educational attendance and achievements on their resume, such as the Harvard student accused of making up facts. Saying you were not aware of such falsehoods will not cover you from facing legal charges if pursued by a plaintiff harmed by an employee.

Effective background checking practices are essential in determining whether your potential employee is telling the truth about his or her education, work history and possible criminal history. For more details about why you need this to avoid liability and how CAI can assist you with running proper background checks, please visit our website.

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HIRE Act Can Save Employers Money This Year

Friday, May 21st, 2010

On March 18, 2010, President Barack Obama signed into law the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act, which includes new tax benefits directly related to hiring employees. This bill, aimed at providing hiring incentives to restore some jobs lost in the latest economic recession, offers business owners the following benefits:

  • Its payroll tax exemption provides employers with an exemption from the employer’s 6.2 percent share of Social Security tax on wages paid to qualifying employees (meaning previously unemployed workers), effective for wages paid from March 19, 2010 through Dec. 31, 2010.
  • For each qualified employee retained for at least 52 consecutive weeks, businesses will be eligible for a general business tax credit, referred to as the new hire retention credit, of 6.2 percent of wages paid to the qualified employee over the 52-week period, up to a maximum credit of $1,000.

New employees must be hired between Feb. 3, 2010 and Jan. 1, 2011 in order to qualify for the business tax credits. The newly-hired employee must have been unemployed 60 days prior to starting work or worked fewer than 40 hours for someone else during the 60-day period.

The IRS has released a new Form W-11 that will help employers claim the special payroll tax exemption. Employers must retain this form along with other payroll and income tax records. Most eligible employers then use Form 941, Employer’s Quarterly Federal Tax Return, to claim the payroll tax exemption for eligible new hires.

The new hire retention credit will be claimed on the employer’s 2011 income tax return.

Business owners will get the most out of the tax credits by hiring qualifying employees sooner rather than later, as the credits diminish over time and disappear completely by Jan. 1, 2011. The benefits do not apply to household employers or federal, state and local government employers, other than public colleges and universities.

More information on the HIRE ACT and its other business incentives, such as writing off investments in equipment, can be found at For tax details, consult the IRS Q&A page.

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Leveraging Social Media for New Hires

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

We have all heard stories about teachers getting fired for inappropriate Facebook pictures and employees expressing dissatisfaction through tweets.  Leaving aside these situations, social media actually can help us in the hiring process.

Most of us vet new hires through references, background checks and credit checks. But with social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter and Flickr, potential employees are breaking down the walls between professional persona and personal life for us.

So how much of the information on these sites should you rely on when hiring? Here are a few guiding points.

  • Be Open Minded – While potential employees are responsible for what they post online and who can see it, remember that these sites are generally used for recreational and personal uses. However, if their LinkedIn profile picture has a beer in it, go ahead and cross them off your list, unless you’re hiring for a brewery. As a business connections site, LinkedIn should be regarded as a professional social media tool and be used accordingly.
  • Consider Its Relevance to the Position – Take note of the position the candidate is applying for and base any judgments from there. A teaching candidate should not have photos from a spring break wet T-shirt contest, for example. But a candidate who collects matchbooks or reveals similarly innocuous behaviors online should not raise a red flag.
  • When in Doubt, Ask – If you are unsure about something you have come across in your employee search and the candidate seems worthwhile for consideration, then just ask him or her about it. Good employees are hard to find, so taking a moment to go an extra step could be very beneficial in the long run.

How does your company leverage social media for new hires? We would love to hear your opinions.

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