Finding Staff for your Small Business

As a business owner, your goal will be to grow your business to whatever level suits your ambitions and lifestyle, and which the market can sustain. You may start with just yourself or have help from a couple of family members or friends, or employ someone you already know to help out. You’ll inevitably find that somewhere down the line as the business grows, you will need to employ new workers to help deliver your expansion plans. If you don’t have a lot of experience with recruitment, you’ll need to learn about applicable legislation and the best ways to find the perfect applicants for your job openings.


Before you start buying extra coffee mugs or working out an induction timetable, make sure you are familiar with and understand all the laws that will apply to your new member of staff. There are laws on discrimination, workers rights, your obligations and duty of care, working environment, taxation and insurance, sick pay, annual leave, maternity and paternity rights, working hours; in other words, an awful lot of legislation that you must adhere to if you are to keep your business legal.


Having got to grips with what laws apply to your situation and how to run your payroll, you then need to advertise for applicants. You need to be very clear about what the job entails, what will be expected of the employee and what experience and qualifications they should have. You need to prepare all this information in the job description and person specification documents that you keep on record for each role within your company. Make sure you don’t breach any regulations in the advert, such as gender or disability discrimination, and include clear instructions on how to apply for the job. Place your ads in publications or on websites that are appropriate for the vacancy, so for example, if you want a cleaner, use local papers and community websites, but if you want a qualified engineer use specialist industry job boards. There are plenty of online job search platforms that will list your ad, and they are becoming increasingly popular as they are comprehensive and easy to use. Click here for more information about job search sites.

Selecting for interviews

You should have a cut off date for your vacancy, and when that has passed gather all your applications together and whittle them down to the best 4 – 6 candidates. When you assess the applications, it’s perfectly ok to remove any that are poorly presented or badly written. Look for applicants that meet your criteria from the job and person specifications and applications that demonstrate the skills required and the level of education needed for the job. When you have narrowed it down to the best candidates, you can organize the interviews and inform the applicants of the results of their application.

The process of conducting interviews makes for a whole article in itself, so do some more research on how to carry out interviews, the questions to ask and how to interpret the responses you get. With the correct preparation in the initial stages, you stand more chance of the seeing the ideal employee walk through your door.