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6 tips to handle job applications

If you’re a small business owner with limited resources, recruiting new staff can be a demanding exercise.

To help you get through the process in a timely manner, we’ve put together tips to help you sort through job applications, run interviews and, most importantly, find the right person for the job.

Identify the skills required

Write down exactly how your new employee will be expected to add value to your business and list the qualities, skills and experience they will need to do the job effectively. It’s useful to identify the qualities and skills that are essential to the job and those which may be desirable. This will help you to more easily evaluate applications.

Emphasise your brand

In order to attract the best people, your reputation and the image of your business is key. Think about what sets your business apart from your competitors and highlight these aspects when advertising the job. Also, consider whether you can offer incentives, such as training or development opportunities to make your business even more appealing to potential applicants.

Understand the benefits of a diverse workforce

There is compelling evidence to show that a diverse workforce leads to greater productivity and high performance. Diversity can occur when you have people of different cultures, ages, gender or physical ability working together. Encourage diversity in your job advertisement, job design and application process.

Decide how to manage applications and assessments

The application and assessment process may vary depending on the type of position you are recruiting.

The application process may require applicants to submit their CV or resume, prepare an application letter, provide a portfolio of work samples or complete selection criteria.

There are also various assessment methods such as a structured interview, a written test, presentation or informal chat. It is important for you to consider which method will provide you with the best opportunity to evaluate the suitability of applicants based on the requirements of the job. The most common assessment process is a structured interview.

Prepare for the interview

You should ask questions which are based on the skills, knowledge or expertise required for the job. Do not ask personal questions, or questions unrelated to the job. Develop a checklist or template to record your observations during the interview.

Seek help from recruitment professionals

Recruiting can be a time consuming task. If you are too busy you may want to consider approaching a recruitment agency to help advertise the job and shortlist applicants for you. It is worthwhile contacting a few agencies to discuss their fee structure and services before engaging them.

Useful resources to help you manage staff

For more information on hiring and managing employees:

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