Hiring the Right Techies for Your Company

If a business were a recipe, it would include a mixture of a good idea, luck and opportunity with a special ingredient: the right people. Aside from money and cash flow hiring is the biggest challenge and obstacle facing a small business.  While we all realize its importance, wading through resumes bores us, and the thought of hiring the wrong person scares us. The fear factor gets even worse when you’re a non-techie who’s been tasked with hiring tech staff.  Consider the following when initiating the hiring process:

  • Do you really know what you’re looking for in this new employee?
  • Does the job description reflect your needs?
  • Should this be a permanent, full-time position or should you hire a contractor?
  • Do you have the right people on your interview team?
  • Have you thought carefully about the questions you’ll ask the candidates?

Key Action Items

  • Get some techies to help with hiring. Find one or two trusted techies who can participate in the hiring process, from the writing of the job description all the way through to the final interviews and selection.
  • Get some non-techies to help out, too. Find one or two non-techies and ask them to be part of the hiring process, from start to finish. If the candidate can’t communicate with them, they’re probably not right for your business.
  • Engage a Recruiter or Recruiting Firm.  Sometimes recruiters are viewed as simply an expense, and an unnecessary one at that. But “Professional” recruiters save you time and money. They specialize and excel  in:
    • Finding the “needle in the haystack” by going far beyond the customary process of finding candidates through job boards or advertising; cold call recruiting and networking is what they do best.
    • Pre-qualifying candidates, saving you time and increasing the effectiveness of your hiring process.
    • Presenting 3-5 qualified candidates saving you the time of filtering through a pile of resumes especially in today’s economic market.

Alternate IT Staffing Scenarios

Often you just can’t hire a full-time employee to address every one of your needs. So you have to get creative. One of the following ideas below might meet your needs while costing you a lot less than a permanent, 40-hour-a-week employee.

  • Engage a temporary or contract employee. If your technical or IT problem is temporary, peak workload and technical roadblocks, consider bringing on a contractor to solve the problem.
  • Outsource to local contractors. If your tech or IT tasks require fewer than 40 hours of work per week, consider a local freelancer or IT shop. They may not have a strong understanding of your specific business, and they may not always be available when you need them, but this can be a reasonable compromise if you’re short-staffed and don’t have enough money to hire a full-time techie.
  • Work with your vendors. Depending on the warranty and the service plan you’ve negotiated, you might be able to outsource certain IT tasks to your vendor.