Friday, September 19, 2014

Tips on the Best Ways to Benchmark Salary Information

My management team wants to know how much of a salary increase other local companies are going to be giving to their employees this January. What's the best way to secure that information?
- Manager of Marketing, Web Development Firm

While there certainly are some great Salary Surveys out there and available for purchase, many times the most valid and relevant data is tied to companies within your industry and within your regional area. That data rarely shows itself in a meaningful way in a typical survey, is tougher to find and can be very expensive. Good old fashioned networking with other local businesses on their salary plans will go a long way, offering to share what you learn in exchange for their participation. If your network is weak find a resource that is better connected.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Why Asking Potential Candidates about Conflict Management Is Important

Interview Question: Tell me about a time when you have successfully resolved a conflict.  What was your role in the situation?  How did you handle it?

Regardless of the role or the level a candidate is applying for conflict management is part of life and part of the working experience. Understanding how someone manages the conflicts they are confronted with is an immensely important bit of information that really needs to be explored with every candidate. Understanding the role they played in the situation they are describing is equally critical. Were they the source or just walked into a conflict as a seemingly innocent bystander? Overall this is a must ask area to cover for every interview. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Setting New Hires Up for Success By Implementing an Efficient Orientation

You never get a second chance to make a first impression --- and the first experiences a new hire has with your firm are critical ones that need to be well orchestrated. New hires need to deal in part with the administration of becoming a new employee (benefits, taxes, payroll, etc.), all of which can be started well before day one. The second and more critical piece is how you welcome and integrate the new hire into your firm. Consider a PowerPoint on key company information (mission, history, products and services, management), followed by walking the new hire around to meet as many members of your firm as is possible. Lastly, find ways to get them in front of members of the company leadership for some dedicated period of time.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Where Should You Be Filing Employee I-9 Forms?

In the past month I've read two articles with conflicting information about I-9 forms and where they should be filed. Help!
- HR Manager, Business Services Firm

I think I saw the same articles. The I-9 form, which is the written proof all employers need from their employees that they are eligible to work in the US, are best filed separately from the employee files. While the INS does not mandate this, the presence of photocopies of photo identification (e.g. Driver's License, Passport) could prove problematic. Place the I-9's for all active employees in a separate file folder or book. Also....keep the forms of those terminated employees for at least 2 years.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Why Asking a Potential Candidate About Problem Solving in an Open Ended Manner Provides Better Answers

Provide an example of your problem solving approach.

The open ended nature of this question really creates a great opportunity to see your candidate in action, which is key to your assessment of them as a fit. While you could propose a specific problem to solve it is almost better to let them come up with the problem and the solution as many times this will turn into them describing a past scenario that they faced. Overall you want to listen and read tone, attitude and focus. Are they calm or panicked? Are they daunted or invigorated? Are they complaining about having to deal or up for the challenge?