A great payroll firm employs great payroll staff. In order to keep your staff, and your firm, operating in tip-top shape, you must perform regular maintenance on your firm – in the form of recruiting and training.
The first step is to evaluate the current state of your firm. What are the demographics of your staff – age, knowledge, education level, etc.? How well does this match the demographics of your clients’ businesses? Assess your firm’s current training program. Are your staff members knowledgeable about the latest payroll laws and technologies? If not, determine the knowledge gap, so you can the best course of action. Is the solution new employees or more training?
Take a look at your existing hiring strategy and see if it matches your current employment needs. Is your firm pursuing recent graduates or experienced professionals? It’s also important to assess how you are reaching out to them. Are you reaching them where they’re looking for jobs? If the methods of recruitment you use are ineffective, your hiring strategy is also ineffective and needs reevaluating. Study your targeted prospects to determine their job seeking habits, goals and ideals. Are you offering them the benefits and work environment that they desire and need to thrive?
As part of your hiring strategy, map out you’re the process you will use to quickly pre-screen applicants. With today’s technology, there are multiple options. Consider using a third-party agency to pre-select candidates for your firm to review. Phone and video interviews are another popular choice to screen candidates before bringing them in for face-to-face interviews. Many businesses are starting to recruit via social media more as well. According to SurePayroll’s latest ScoreCard, approximately 25 percent of small businesses are now using LinkedIn to identify job candidates. LinkedIn uses an algorithm to match job positions with potential candidates. Its Recruiter Mobile app allows recruiters to search the network’s members using their job criteria to find candidates who they can then contact for screening interviews.
While it’s important to bring in fresh talent – at all professional levels – it’s also equally important to invest in the talent you already have. Create a training guide and a plan for rolling it out within your firm. Consider training for any new payroll solutions or updates to existing solutions that your clients are using. Make plans to implement yearly training to stay up-to-date on current laws and any changes that will affect your clients.
As part of your training plan, locate events in the payroll industry that will allow you and your employees to receive CPE. Make a training schedule and communicate to employees which training sessions are mandatory and which are optional. A decision needs to be made for funding mandatory training. If the firm will cover the costs of these training, then these items will need to be carefully budgeted for.
Employing the right people is one of the best investments you can make for your payroll practice. Investing in your people through the right recruitment and training techniques will breathe a new life into your firm.
See inside April 2015
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