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Jax Daily Record Wednesday, Apr. 12, 201712:00 PM EST

Ways to hire the right employees and keep them

Northeast Florida Builders Association

By Charles W. Coker, Ph.D., SPHR, LifeThrive founder and CEO

The challenge is not a new one. Good help and keeping that good help has always been a challenge, but perhaps not as tough as it is today.

With the potential of new immigration policies, it could get even worse.

Builders must take a moment — today — to reconsider the way they approach hiring and developing employees.

They must identify the key concepts for finding the right people and then institute the proper processes to keep those who are good and committed to the company and clients who hire them.

Let’s consider several key elements that you can standardize before you try to meet your client’s needs:

What does your company need?

You probably specialize in your approach to building.

There are things your workers need that perhaps other companies do not need. Focus on your unique selling proposition and what it will take to complete the jobs you are trying to secure.

Once you understand you can create job announcements for publication in various media outlets, such as websites and student newspapers.

You will need to know what to look for or contract someone to read and analyzed resumes for interviews (either on campus or at your company).

Can you describe what is necessary to meet client needs?

Think about the ideal person for your company.

Then choose the staffing assessment tools available to help make accurate hiring decisions.

In addition to conducting structured interviews that include questions to determine a candidate’s qualifications and conducting background checks, many employers are using job knowledge and ability tests as well as personality or behavioral assessments to gauge if a person is the right fit.

When used properly, behavioral and personality instruments can help determine which candidates have the highest probability of success in your organization.

In addition, the assessments may uncover possible areas of concern that warrant further exploration.

Keep in mind, these instruments should not be used as the only criteria in making definitive hiring decisions as they are not pass-fail tests.

Rather, they provide an overall insight into the candidates to help decide if their characteristics fit your needs. Then try them on for size.

According to the U.S. Construction Industry Talent Development Report, almost 90 percent of those surveyed responded they were increasing recruiting efforts at schools, colleges and universities to prepare for a changing workforce.

Seventy-eight percent of the respondents said they used internships or co-op programs as a recruitment tool.

Have you differentiated your company from competitors?

You need to be able to show why you are an employer of choice to attract people to your company.

One way to achieve this is by making a concerted effort to brand, market and sustain your image.

In addition to offering competitive pay and benefits packages, take a hard look at what you are doing in terms of retaining, motivating, recognizing and rewarding your employees.

Providing a healthy work-life balance, maintaining a diverse and welcoming work environment and offering challenging work assignments are also key for being an employer of choice.

Discover what your current employees think about your company, the reasons why they stay and if they would recommend working at your organization to others.

You want your employees singing your praises as a great place to work.

Focus on the important, not the urgent. Take the time to do the things that are necessary to sustain your company so you will survive when the cycle is not booming.

LifeThrive is here to help you identify what and how to reach each of these three critical areas.

LifeThrive is a developmental organization providing research-based employee lifecycle consultation with a focus on helping companies maximize individual employee and team potential.

The primary result is satisfied and more productive employees, equating to a healthier bottom line for your business.

More information is available on line at or contact Dr. Coker at [email protected].

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