How to hire the right staff for your small business

February 20, 2024
minutes to read
Warren More
Table of Contents

As a small business owner, finding and keeping talented employees can be difficult. With larger companies offering higher salaries, better perks, and more leave, keeping your staff engaged and motivated can be difficult. Fortunately, you can use some practical strategies to hire and retain the staff in your small business. Let's look at what they are.

The hiring market is very competitive in Australia at the moment. As a result, it's essential to keep up with what the job market looks like. You need to understand what roles are open, what salaries people are offering and what perks are attractive. With this information, you can implement an effective hiring plan to hire the right people for your business.

Step 1: Confirm the role you need to be filled

The first step in hiring is to know precisely what you want your new hire to do and how you want it done. For example, if the job is an office administrator position, then a person with skills in diary management, typing and admin would be perfect. If it's a sales role, someone with experience identifying the correct targets, negotiating commercials and signing deals is your person.

Step 2: Confirm the skills and experience the role requires

After identifying the role, you'll need to ensure that the person you hire has the skills necessary for the job and understands what's expected of them. Consider who you want to hire for your position and write down the strengths that will help them succeed. Here are some examples of strengths that you might list:  

  • Good communication skills  
  • Works well with others  
  • Gets things done efficiently.

Step 3: Put together an interview process

The best way to find out if someone is suitable for your business is to have a detailed interview process. This will help ensure that you are interviewing qualified candidates for the job. Start by creating a list of the interview stages you want to have, and draft a list of questions you can use to understand if the person is the right fit. A typical interview process might look like this:

  • Phone interview
  • Line manager interview
  • Final panel interviews.

For some positions advertised, candidates may need to complete a take-home task. For example, many engineers will do a coding test when applying for a job. For others, you might require a psychometric test to be conducted. Ensure you communicate the steps to each candidate from the start of the process.

Step 4: Set a reasonable salary based on your budget

Now that you have a good idea of what you are looking for, you'll want to confirm the employee's wages and benefits. If the person you hire is going to be full-time, it's best to set a yearly salary to which you are happy to commit. Remember, when budgeting a salary, you'll need to add compulsory super payments, and depending on how large your business is, payroll tax.

Overall, the salary you set will need to reflect what fits within your budget and where the market is. If you find the compensation offered is not competitive enough, consider looking at alternative packages to attract talent. This could include additional leave, part-time work, or looking at people starting out in their career.

Step 5: Advertise the role and find qualified candidates

As a small business owner, you want to find the most qualified candidates as soon as possible. You need to ensure that you're hiring someone who can be an asset to your company. Hiring the wrong person can cause enormous problems for your business, so it's essential that you take some time to determine whether or not someone is suitable for the job before making any offers.

When you open a job position, you should start by advertising the role on job boards like Seek and Linkedin. It's also a good idea to ask people in your network if they know anyone who could be a good fit. With a competitive market, your network often yields better results than just promoting the job online.

Offering to train a new employee is another way to demonstrate your commitment beyond just salary. By providing training, you can show them that you care about keeping them engaged and up to date on current practices. Training allows employees to feel comfortable enough in their position that they are willing to learn more about the business and become better at what they do.

Step 6: Move fast to make an offer

Once you have found the right person, you should move fast to make an offer. The longer you leave it, the greater the risk that another offer hits their inbox. When making an offer to a new employee, it's essential to communicate the offer's details clearly. Prepare a written offer letter outlining the job terms, including the job title, salary, benefits, start date, and other essential information.

Once the candidate has accepted the offer, follow up with them to confirm the start date and any other details that need to be addressed. You'll want to start preparing for their onboarding. A good induction is the final critical step to bringing on people successfully.

Step 7: Induct the new joiner

On the first day a new joiner starts, you should assign them a mentor or buddy. This person can help the new team member settle in and answer any questions. In the morning, schedule an induction meeting with the new team members to reaffirm the details of their position.

Over the first week, help the team member familiarise themselves with the company's processes and provide any necessary training or resources, such as company policies, procedures, and systems.

Hiring FAQs

How do I know what award to pay my employees?

You can use the Fair Work Ombudsman website to determine the correct award for your employees based on their industry and job description.

What are the National Employment Standards (NES)?

The National Employment Standards (NES) set out ten minimum standards that must be met by all employers in Australia. These include entitlements such as annual, sick, and parental leave.

Do I need to provide my employees with superannuation?

Yes, as an employer, you must provide your employees with superannuation contributions. The current rate is 10.5% of their ordinary earnings, but it will increase gradually over the coming years.

How do I ensure compliance with workplace health and safety regulations?

You can ensure workplace health and safety regulations compliance by conducting regular risk assessments, providing appropriate training, and implementing effective safety procedures and protocols. Additionally, you should stay current with any changes to relevant legislation and regulations.

Having the right people can be your biggest asset as a small business. The hiring market is always competitive, so it's essential to always keep an eye out for qualified candidates. This will save lots of time and money while helping ensure you get the right person for the job. If you want your small business to be successful, investing time into building an atmosphere where employees feel valued is essential - so don't hesitate to start implementing these steps when hiring today.

DISCLAIMER: Team Thrive Pty Ltd ABN 15 637 676 496 (Thriday) is an authorised representative (No.1297601) of Regional Australia Bank ABN 21 087 650 360  AFSL 241167 (Regional Australia Bank).  Regional Australia Bank is the issuer of the transaction account and debit card available through Thriday. Any information provided by Thriday is general in nature and does not take into account your personal situation. You should consider whether Thriday is appropriate for you.

Why waste time on financial admin when Thriday can do it for you?

Already have an account? Login here
Thriday Debit Card


Live demo this Thursday at 12:30pm.