A business is only as good as its weakest employee, so the saying goes. Therefore, every hire in your small business counts.

The good news about current hiring is that there are many options for finding and evaluating job candidates. Choosing the right resource to aid in your hiring is a matter of mapping what you need to the specialty of the hiring resources available.

Review the following hiring resources to identify the best approach for your small business.

1.  Recruiters
Recruiters do much of the heavy lifting of a hire, and in return, you pay them for that assistance. Recruiters will typically gather resumes, conduct preliminary interviews, do reference checks and negotiate offers. Fees for recruiters can be 10% to 35% of the new hire’s annual salary, either paid when you hire someone or in part, as a retainer during the search.

While this fee may sound high, recruiters can be invaluable and more than pay for themselves in certain circumstances. For one, they save time in your company, and when time is tight, it may make more financial sense for you to pay someone than to conduct the search yourself. In addition, a recruiter can be the right choice if you want to keep your search confidential. Recruiters typically tap people from their professional network, meaning a search can be done discreetly. Recruiters are also helpful if you are filling a position that is out of your domain of expertise. In this instance, a recruiter may be able to evaluate a candidate’s fit with your needs better than you can.

2.  LinkedIn
LinkedIn, the online professional network, is a good place to find candidates for professional positions within your business. You can place an ad — pricing typically depends on location or other factors — and showcase it to your network and the larger LinkedIn community. The site lets you target candidates through keywords for skills or experience. Once your ad is posted, you can find out who has been looking at your posting as well as view the profiles of applicants before you bring them in for an interview. LinkedIn is a professional business site and therefore may not be your best resource for hourly or administrative staff.

3.  Skill-specific hiring sites
One of the strengths of online recruiting is the potential to access people with specific skills or expertise. Many sites exist today to help your company find everything from skilled administrative staff to technical specialists to people with sector-specific skills and experience.

For example, culintro.com lets you post jobs for a variety of positions in the restaurant industry. Dice.com is a site specializing in experienced technical staffers. Each site takes a slightly different approach to helping with hiring, but most will let you narrow your post by location and skill. Many sites offer a package price that provides costs savings for posting multiple jobs over time.

4.  Other job sites
While skill-specific or industry-focused sites enable you to post jobs requiring certain types of skills, other job sites provide access to workers based on type of hire. For instance, if you need freelance or hourly staff, you can post a job listing to sites specifying type of hire. This approach can help to avoid the challenge of finding great candidates who are looking for a work schedule that’s different from what you are offering. Examples of these sites include elance.com and snagajob.com. Elance, as the names suggests, is a resource for finding freelance creative workers. Snagajob can help businesses find hourly workers in retail, food service, health care and other areas. Both sites let you post jobs based on your specifications.

Time spent choosing the right hiring resource can pay off when you find the right person for the job with the greatest ease. Keep in mind that the right hiring resource may vary from hire to hire. Review this list, as needed to stay on track.


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