How to hire the right person and hang on to them


The smaller the business, the more important it is to hire the right people.

It is important to get this step right because who you recruit affects your training plan, team dynamics and career development – not just the job today. Here, Fetola mentor, Anna Harris-Stone gives her top tips for hiring the right person for your business and keeping them:

1. Job descriptions

Firstly, you will need to draw up a job description; yes, you need a job description for one person! It forms the basis for your recruitment. You will also need to think about where this person will be in 5 or 10 years.

2. Training

Once you have recruited a new staff member, you need to onboard them properly to ensure that they settle into their job in the shortest possible time. Many business owners think that their prayers have been answered when a new employee starts work, but they are often left to their own devices and have to learn on the job.

Onboarding the employee requires focus on the employee during the first few weeks and this is a crucial step in your process.  This time should be spent helping the employee settle in and time for the HR team and management to determine what training the employee needs to perform at an optimal level in their job.

3. Admin and more admin

Don’t underestimate the importance of paperwork at this stage.  Administration underpins any business and this is often the bane for many entrepreneurs. There are two components that are important: first the legislation and then the financial.  The legislation refers to the minimum standards of your industry and the financial refers to the levies applicable to your sector, for example, SETA levies. If your admin is in place you will have easy access to records and peace of mind regarding compliance.

4. Performance and growth

Career planning is difficult in a small business when compared to large corporate environment, but this can be countered with a flexible and family orientated environment. Regular discussions about performance and career growth are the glue to the human resource system and relationship building.

This feeds into multiple parts of the system, namely identifying what would contribute to this employee’s job satisfaction and staff retention. Clear conditions of service and remuneration practices underpin the process.

A crucial concept in HR systems that many people often overlook is fun in the workplace – spontaneous or planned. Fun activities grow relationships and when staff feel like they belong and are acknowledged, it goes a long way to building staff morale and staff retention. You cannot put a price tag on this! All actions have an impact and you shouldn’t forget the interrelatedness of behaviour.

About the author: 

anna harrisAnna Harris-Stone holds a Bachelor of Social Sciences, BA Honours in Industrial Psychology and is currently studying for her M.A. in Industrial Psychology at the University of South Africa. Anna has extensive experience in consulting within the Human Resources arena, including facilitating Change Management.

If you would like to contact Anna, email her here.