Retail is a tough business and hiring the right people to help you meet your goals is seemingly impossible. It can feel like there’s a revolving door in retail where everyone is always looking for their next job opportunity. Employees are looking for more than just a paycheck — they’re looking to be engaged, productive, and happy on the job. This article will discuss 10 tips that any retailer can use when hiring new employees.
Section: 1. Hire for attitude and train for skill
What should you look for when hiring retail workers? Experts advise you to keep an eye out for people who are (or have been):
- Willing and eager to learn
- At ease with people
- Positivity and optimism
- Exceptional emotional intelligence
It’s a tall order, but many of these characteristics overlap, so finding people who exhibit a few of these attitudes may not be as difficult as you think.
Section: 2. Go beyond traditional interviews
Now that we’ve identified the qualities to look for when hiring, let’s talk about how you can bring these qualities to the surface in your candidates. People tend to put their best foot forward during formal interviews, so determining whether someone truly possesses the right attitudes can be difficult.
Going beyond traditional interview processes and getting a little creative with how you vet candidates is a good way around this. Here are some suggestions:
- Assign a sample project: If possible, assign a sample project to your candidates and see what they produce. This will give your insight into their work ethic, ability to follow directions and communicate, and creativity. For example, if you’re hiring content writers, have candidates write a sample blog post on a topic of your choosing and assess their writing style and voice.
- Test cultural fit: HireUp suggests asking prospective employees questions like “What do you value in a workplace?” or “What would make you never want to work at [company name]?” These questions will help ensure you only bring on people who will thrive in your office environment.
- Get input from current employees: Before making a final decision about an applicant, ask current employees for feedback about
Section: 3. Strengthen your online presence
Top performers are always doing their homework, so make sure they like what they find when they Google your business. Make sure your website and social media accounts are well-designed and contain sufficient information about your company.
Go to Glassdoor.com and complete your company profile if you haven’t already. Include photos and as much information as possible. Read the reviews that your employees (past and present) have written about your company. If you notice some negative reviews, discuss them with your team and see what you can do.
Before bringing on new employees, it’s best to resolve any internal issues first. The last thing you want to do is invite people in.
Section: 4. Hire your biggest fans
Look for candidates who show a genuine interest in your brand. Brand ambassadors have a lot of clout, and your customers will notice!
Plus, because they are likely already familiar with your company’s culture and product line, onboarding will be easier.
See if you can apply this strategy to your own company. If you’re looking for new employees, reach out to your customers and fans to see if they’d like to work for you.
Section: 5. Highlight your company values
Putting your values on display aids in attracting the best candidates. So, talk about the causes you care about. Communicate what makes your company stand out and what it stands for.
Section: 6. Be realistic about the job
Both you and the applicant will be able to determine if they’re a good fit for the job if you paint an accurate picture of your company and the position. So, while it may be tempting to only talk about your store’s positive aspects, don’t oversell the job or misrepresent your business. Be open and honest about the job’s requirements and your expectations.
Section: 7. Motivate your current employees
Encourage your employees to assist you in hiring more people. Your current employees are familiar with the requirements of the position. They have a vested interest in bringing in people who will lighten rather than add to the workload.
Birds of a feather, as the cliché goes, flock together, so they are very likely to know others who are similar to them. As a result, you should consider the recommendation of the employee when considering the person they’re recommending.
Section: 8. Implement 24/7 hiring—aided by technology
The job market in retail is more competitive than it has ever been. Hourly and front-line workers have resigned due to health and safety concerns raised by the pandemic. Furthermore, employee expectations have skyrocketed, and candidates have more options than ever before.
As a result, retailers must make an extra effort to find and hire employees. Part of that entails being on the lookout for new candidates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
But what does it mean to be “always on”? Use technology, in a nutshell.
By allowing you to schedule and conduct interviews more efficiently, video platforms help you streamline the hiring process. Recruiters are aided by solutions such as chatbots and AI-powered tools when conducting online or SMS-based interviews.
You can also use natural language processing and machine learning to display job interviews in front of potential candidates as they browse social media sites. The company is also sending notifications to people who “like” their page.
These tools and tactics enable retailers to automate steps in the recruitment and effectively get in front of potential employees at the right time.
Section: 9. Establish some system for employee performance
Developing a performance system for employees is one of the most effective ways for retailers to attract and retain the best people.
It’s a transparent tool for setting performance expectations that can be used at any point during a person’s career, from the interview to promotion. This clarity also provides a unified framework for store owners and employees, which is beneficial to teams of all sizes.
Develop rules of conduct, procedures, or employees, if you haven’t already, and document them for easy reference when hiring and evaluating your team.
Section: 10. Be a multi-channel recruiter
Today’s retailers operate in a competitive environment that necessitates foresight as well as online and social savvy. If you want to attract candidates who possess those characteristics, you should look beyond traditional channels like job boards.
Social media is well-known for its effectiveness as a recruiting tool. For example, LinkedIn has several talent solutions that can help you find, vet, and contact candidates.
While Facebook and Twitter aren’t specifically designed for recruiting, they can help you find new hires. Make a special careers tab on your Facebook page where your fans can browse and apply for jobs and use Twitter to spread the word about your openings.
Takeaway: A thorough and effective hiring process is the key to finding great employees for your retail store.