By Kelly Barcelos

Every business owner must understand that employees can either lead their company to success or they can be the reason to shut down the firm. You must hire smartly and use the right tools and strategies. Making one tiny recruiting mistake can put your entire business in a jeopardy.

Cloud-based recruitment software can help in making the hiring process a little easier. Apart from that, the following recruiting hacks can help you avoid mistakes and ensure that you only hire the best candidates.

1. Clearly Define the Hiring Strategy

You must have a clear hiring strategy before you even start the hiring process. As a small business, it is important that you keep the company lean. Scratch off all the unnecessary roles and focus on hiring only for those positions you absolutely need. Opt for freelancers instead of hiring employees whom you would need for just a few hours a day.

Avoid hiring a large number of people at once. Your business needs to sustain the growth and managing a massive change can take a toll on your company, so it’s better to go slow. Write accurate job descriptions that would reflect the roles and skill sets you require from the applicants. Screening candidates will be much easier if you know what exactly you want from an applicant. Do not rush into hiring and have a clear temp-to-permanent policy to avoid difficult situations due to wrong hiring.

2. Tap All the Sources

Don’t limit yourself to just one source for recruiting suitable candidates. Branch out and make use of as many sources, physically and virtually, to attract talent without paying for advertisements. Conferences and social events are a great way to meet new people and pitch your business. Referrals can bring in some great talent through your door without working hard for it. Make it easier for employees or acquaintances to refer candidates and introduce perks to boost employee referrals. Employ applicant tracking system in various stages of the hiring process.

Don’t be wary about hiring fresh graduates. You can train and mould them to your business requirements. Investing in them would be a good idea as they won’t be defined by habits from previous companies and you can build a talent pool that is dedicated to the success of your company.

3. Ditch Ambiguity

Hiring candidates for small businesses can be quite a task if you don’t list the needs of the position properly. Think carefully about the job offer before placing an ad. Do not make the mistake of putting up an unclear, ambiguous or incomplete job advertisements. Specify the employee’s duties clearly and be realistic while presenting the work environment.

Make sure that your website does most of the work for you. If you have clear and reliable information on the website, it will be easier for the prospective employees to identify with your business and apply if they think they are a good fit for the company.

4. Flaunt the Company Culture and Values

What’s the best way to attract talent? Show them that your company is the best place to work! Don’t be afraid to show your company culture to prospective employees. Encourage your current employees to show off the work culture, possibly on social media or even through word of mouth. Own your company’s mission and core values, live by them and hire in accordance with them.

5. DON’T Settle

If you don’t find the perfect employee, keep looking. Do not settle. Hiring a candidate with the right skill set and work experience is critical, so wait a little longer if necessary. You may need to extend your search, tap more contacts, dig a little more into various channels but you will eventually get there. A wrong hire will literally cost you money, something that you cannot afford in a small business. Look for someone who has clear long-term career goals and who will be a good cultural fit for the company.

If you feel that someone is a perfect fit for your company despite the required qualifications or vice versa, hire or reject them accordingly. Listen to your gut and only hire those with whom you think you will genuinely enjoy working. Implementing talent acquisition software will make the task a little easier.