You found a great product or service, marketed it properly, and things are going well for your small business – almost too well, in fact. Your dream of independence has fallen by the wayside as you struggle to keep up with everything you need to do to create product, satisfy your customers, and continue to grow. Perhaps it is time to think about bringing in an extra hand to help you out. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when hiring an employee for your small business:
- Are there some services you should just buy? An entrepreneur likes to do everything, but that can get overwhelming. Are there some tasks you perform that might best be accomplished by another business professional? You might look at a vendor to help you with your bookkeeping or website, for example.
- What type of employee do you want? Are you looking for a freelance person who specializes in one area that you can assign projects to as needed? Do you need an independent contractor who you want to be available for you on a relatively consistent basis? Will this person be working with you in your office or from a remote location? Do you need part-time or full-time help?
- Think about personality types? What type of personality do you have, and do you need somebody who will complement you and balance out your weaker areas? If you are going to work closely together, make sure you are compatible.
- List out job responsibilities: What tasks will you be assigning to this person? What skills are needed to perform those tasks?
- Can you afford a salary? Obviously this person will want to be paid, but that is a lot of pressure on you to support someone else on a weekly basis. There are a lot of unseen costs to employees that you must take into consideration as well, such as matching contributions and insurances. It might be better to start with somebody on a freelance basis and work your way up to an employee relationship as your business improves.
- Do it legally: Know what questions you can and cannot ask in a job interview. Find out what documents you will be required to obtain and maintain on an employee, such as citizenship status and tax forms. Does your state require worker’s compensation or disability insurance? Make sure you maintain all paperwork correctly from the very beginning so you don’t run into any problems down the road. Look to the Internal Revenue Service, Small Business Administration or your state’s website to find out exactly what you need to do.
Once you know the general process, think about where you might be able to find candidates to meet your needs. Start with asking your social network for referrals and then build up to advertising in appropriate local or online media outlets. Try to interview a few candidates to get some comparison points, hire the best fit, and start growing!