Attract And Manage Top Talent In Your Small Business

Kristie Arslan

A critical ingredient to success is surrounding yourself with the right people that have the skill sets you need and the mindset that meshes with the culture and vision of your company. For a small business owner, attracting and managing these vital employees can be a source of high anxiety. How do you compete with the big guys who can offer larger salaries? How should you manage the HR process in your small company when you’re the CEO, CFO, and head of HR?

In today’s high-tech world, technology can help you save time and money with recruitment, HR management, and compliance, so you can focus your efforts on empowering your team and growing your business.

Mine your network for top talent

With professional and social networking sites, like LinkedIn and Facebook, along with online job posting services, you can save money and time filling key positions in your business.

Before casting a wide net for open positions, consider leveraging your existing network to spread the word about opportunities in your company. Share with your colleagues on LinkedIn and other networking sites the details of your open position and the type of candidate you are looking for. Ensure you share information about your company and vision. Additionally, consider sending an email blast to key contacts. You are likely to receive a number of good candidates from colleagues that know you and your business. Furthermore, you will be able to speak candidly with contacts about candidates they recommend, helping you pre-qualify individuals before bringing them in for an interview.

If you are planning to post the position to a wider audience, rather than spending a significant sum working with a search firm, there are many lower cost, online job posting sites that can bring in qualified candidates. Look to professional associations and local and state business organizations that have job listing services to help target the candidates with the skill sets you are looking for. Networking sites can still be utilized to help you evaluate a candidate’s skills. LinkedIn is a great resource to learn more about a candidate’s past experience and to read recommendations from previous colleagues to help you wade through resumes.

Face-to-face interviews will still be essential to determining whether a candidate is a right fit, but technology tools can help make your search efforts more efficient and effective.

Stand out with your benefit offerings

Maybe you don’t have the ability to woo talent with big signing bonuses and salaries. However, being small often allows you to have more flexibility within your company, and with a smaller team, you can often offer unique benefits and perks to prospective employees.

Implement a bonus structure in addition to annual compensation to attract and incentive your employees. Offering quarterly or semi-annual bonuses based on results or key performance indicators can be an alluring benefit.

Health costs are a top concern for many workers. Consider if you can cover more of the cost of your employees’ health benefits in combination with compensation. This can be challenging for those living in states where the cost of health coverage is high but can be a big draw for candidates. Another option is providing additional financial support to workers for childcare costs such as daycare, preschool, or aftercare programs; this is an attractive benefit for working parents.

Offer work-life balance benefits such as a flexible work schedule or the ability to work from home one day a week. Additional perks can include monthly staff lunches, paying for one membership in an industry association or networking group to help your staff with professional development, and stipends toward commuter costs like public transportation.

As a small company, you are not bogged down by the HR bureaucracy often found in large companies, thus you have the opportunity to find creative ways to create a company culture that appeals to prospective employees and your current team.

Take the guesswork and paperwork out of compliance

Another big headache for small business is ensuring that you are complying with state and federal labor and wage regulations. Also, if you create internal HR policies for your company, you will want to be sure to monitor how you are complying with your in-house procedures.

From payroll to required postings on labor laws to storing employee data, HR management software solutions and third-party vendors can help you with meet your compliance burden and stay up-to-date with changes coming down the pike. Better yet, tech tools can digitize all your HR documents, giving you more room to grow and allowing your employees to access their information, such as payroll or retirement accounts, with ease.

Improve employee engagement

When you are in a small business, each team member plays an integral role in the management and success of your company. Engaging your employees and keeping them on track to meet performance goals is an important task, particularly if you are offering bonuses as incentives.

With performance management software tools specifically for small and midsize companies, performance reviews no longer need to be a once and done effort every year. Managers and employees can use software to manage projects, pinpoint where an employee is exceeding their goals, and determine areas requiring improvement. This can be done throughout the year, allowing employees to know where they stand and managers to stay engaged with their team and ensure business goals are being met.

The most precious commodities for any small business owner are their time, their team, and their bottom line. Harnessing the power of technology can help a small business be more efficient with their time, effectively engage their team, and attract top talent, all while boosting their bottom line.

Building a successful company is hard work. SAP’s affordable solutions for small and midsize companies are designed to make it easier. Run all aspects your company with SAP software – on-premises or in the cloud. As more than 250,000 small and midsize companies have discovered, you’ll never outgrow SAP – no matter where your business takes you. SAP SuccessFactors solutions include a wide range of tools to help small and midsize businesses simplify talent management. But don’t just take our word for it – explore case studies from 11 different companies in 11 different industries. 

Kristie Arslan

About Kristie Arslan

Kristie Aslan is an Entrepreneur-In-Residence and Small Business Counsel for the SBE Council. Kristie has over 15 years of experience working with business associations and nonprofits, and has hand-on experience starting up and running a successful small business, Popped! Republic, a gourmet popcorn company in Alexandria, Virginia. Kristie is the former Executive Director for Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP) and President & CEO of the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE), and has spent years providing critical insight to media and policy makers into the issues affecting our nation’s small businesses and women-owned firms. She has been quoted and published in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Politico, Roll Call, The Hill and CQ Weekly while having appeared on MSNBC, FOX, CNBC and C-SPAN. Kristie also blogs for the Huffington Post. Follow Kristie on Twitter! @klarslan.