1. In general, hiring the right person is a critical part of the operation of any business. When interviewing prospective employees, keep the following questions in your mind:
a. “Is this the type of person that I want representing my store?”
b. “Is this someone I would like to wait on me?”
When an applicant comes in to pick up an application, you may want to conduct an informal interview at that time. If you are interested in the applicant, schedule a formal interview after you have reviewed the application and called references.
2. References. Previous employers are a good reference source. They can supply valuable information on how the applicant has performed in the past. Questions that should be asked of past employers include:
a. Does the applicant follow directions?
b. Is the applicant dependable and prompt?
c. How does the applicant relate to customers and employees?
d. Would you hire this person again?
Typically, when checking references, a phone call is more effective than a request for a written response. Most people do not feel comfortable with putting negative comments on paper or in an email.
Also, expect that some employers will not give out references at all. Many mployers today are discouraged from this kind of quality statement about an employee for fear of liability or lawsuit repercussions.
If difficulty is encountered in obtaining a reference, simply request more reference sources from the applicant. References should be checked until you have a sufficient feel for the applicant’s past.
3. Screening. Be aware of certain aids that may be useful in screening job applicants. You can utilize the services of reputable personnel placement agencies to assist you in the screening and selection process. Also, there are a number of standardized employee screening tests that can be utilized to help you analyze the character and attitudes of an applicant. While these tests may be useful as a screening tool, be aware that they add another expense to your hiring process and are illegal in some states (Be sure to check your local laws).
4. Recruiting Strategies. There are many ways of recruiting applicants. Consider the following:
a. “Help Wanted” Services. Often, the venue, mall or development where your store is located has a “Help Wanted” list that you can add positions available at Street Corner.
b. Posting a Sign. An effective advertising technique is the posting of a professionally made “Help Wanted” sign right at the store.
c. Word of Mouth. Ask other employees, store managers and friends if they know of prospective employees. This is an effective strategy for seeking employees.
d. Commercial Advertisements. Run a classified advertisement in a local newspaper or post an ad with an online job service. Remember to keep the ad short, simple, and easy to read.
5. Employment at Will. All hired positions at your store should be regarded temporary and are “at will,” which essentially means that the employment can be terminated by either party at any time without notice or reason. It is unnecessary for you to have positions that offer or require a written employment contract.
Be advised, this operations manual should not be construed as a contract between a Street Corner store and its current or future employees.
6. Profile of a Employee. Look for a person who dresses appropriately, is well spoken, and is pleasant. When interviewing, bear in mind what type of person you would prefer to assist you when you shop. Consider the following:
a. Was this person punctual when interviewed? This will tell you how they will respond to work hours in the future.
b. How a person has performed in school and past jobs is a good indicator of a person’s determination and ability.
c. What are the applicant’s future goals? A focused individual working toward a goal (such as a college degree) tends to be responsible and attentive.
d. Personality is very important. Does the applicant appear to be upbeat, have a positive attitude, smile and make contact? Does the individual speak without reservation?
e. A desirable employee is a self-starter and a good listener. They are self-confident and self-motivating. They have a desire to succeed and are tactful. Generally, they are people persons.
f. Hire employees that will meet your needs. Make sure that new employees will be available to work the hours for which you need coverage.
g. Is the applicant capable of fulfilling the duties, which must be carried out at Street Corner?
h. Look for individuals who possess particular traits or qualities, which we refer to as “SNAP”. An employee who exhibits “SNAP” traits will be an asset to any company. They are as follows:
(3) Well spoken;
(4) Shows enthusiasm;
(5) Has performed well at something in the past (i.e., school); and (6) Has goals for the future.
7. Discrimination. A Street Corner operation must never deny employment to an individual due to a person’s age, sex, religion, national origin, race, marital status or disability.
8. Interviewing. Be cautious when interviewing prospective job candidates. The laws relating to non-discrimination require that your questioning of a job candidate respect these anti-discrimination policies. You are not permitted to ask a job candidate questions that directly or indirectly elicit information about protected topics. NEVER ask questions about age, religion, race, gender, national origin/citizenship, disabilities/health history, union membership, language proficiency (unless a job requirement), marital status, sexual orientation, drug use, clubs/organization memberships and home/car ownership (you can verify if they are able get to work).