Priority Personnel Blog

Nine Steps to Greater Team Ownership

March 16th, 2011

As a leader, you know results and productivity are higher when people are committed to their work.  But how do you get real buy-in from your team?

The first step is to be genuine.  What are the others?

View all nine steps to greater team ownership.

Hiring Still Slow? Now is the Time to Review Your Employment Screening Process

March 15th, 2011

The BLS Employment Situation Summary continues to paint an anemic economic picture.

Economists continue to talk about a “jobless recovery,” with many employers focusing on productivity gains, as opposed to hiring, to manage any increases in business.

What’s the upside?

Well, if your company isn’t focused on hiring right now, it may be the perfect time for you to review and improve your employment screening process.  Doing so could help you:

  • increase compliance;
  • reduce theft, fraud and accidents;
  • prepare you to make even better hires when the time comes.

As experts in employment screening, Priority Personnel recommends taking the following steps to reduce the potential for negligent hiring and discrimination:

Consult with your attorney. If you hire on your own, you should have your legal counsel review your screening process to ensure you’re complying with all current legislation and hiring regulations.

Be consistent. Your screening process should be the same for all candidates within comparable job descriptions.  If you do a background check on one manager, you should also conduct the same background check with candidates for all similar positions.  In addition to preventing anyone from “slipping through the cracks,” a uniform process helps minimize your exposure to litigation.

Use social media carefully. Social media has made access to candidate information fast, easy and free.  But if you intend to use this publicly available information to screen candidates, make sure that you obtain written permission and follow all EEOC and FCRA provisions.

Formalize and document your process. If you don’t already have one in place, now is the time to standardize, formalize and document your background screening policies and procedures.  Creating a formal policy makes screening more effective, efficient and consistent.  Furthermore, should a problem arise, your ability to show that you applied fair, consistent and documented screening processes will limit your legal exposure.

Reduce your risks and make better quality hires with Priority Personnel.

Hiring top talent – honest, hardworking individuals who do what they claim they can do – is critical to your organization’s continued success.  Priority Personnel’s Direct Hire Services can help ensure that success.  Here are just a few of the benefits our comprehensive, accurate screening process provides:

  • transfer employment screening risks such as discrimination and negligent hiring;
  • create a safer work environment;
  • build a more productive workforce;
  • save time and eliminate process bottlenecks employment screening creates;
  • hire the best talent available – pre-screened, reference-checked, skills-verified and ready to perform for you.

Work with Priority Personnel and your hiring decisions can be made with confidence – guaranteed.

Why Written Job Descriptions Yield Better Temporary Staffing Results

March 1st, 2011

Ever play “whisper down the lane”?

Also known as ”telephone,” this popular children’s game provides a simple, yet critical illustration of how important information can get lost in translation.

Great fun if you’re just playing around, but not so great for business.

When it comes to ordering temporary personnel, many of our clients call in their job orders.  Sure, it’s quick and convenient, but did you know that placing your order verbally is not the most effective way to work with us?

The reason is simple – verbal job descriptions can change as they’re transmitted from person to person, resulting in a “whisper down the lane” effect.  Consider, for example, how many people are potentially involved in the “lane” of communication when a job order is placed.  A department manager contacts HR with a need; HR contacts a staffing service coordinator with the order; the coordinator speaks with the staffing firm’s recruiter; the recruiter then communicates the job description to an employee.

See the potential problem?  While a verbal approach may seem easier, challenges can arise when duties get added or subtracted, or if job titles change over time.  As a result, the staffing provider may not send you the best match for the assignment.

At Priority Personnel, we highly recommend that you submit or approve a written job description to which everyone in the line (or “lane”) of communication can refer.  Doing so will eliminate miscommunications, misunderstandings and confusion, and ensure that you get the best employee for the assignment.

Improve your temporary staffing success by working with Priority Personnel, your Central Texas staffing service.

10 Things That Good Bosses Do

February 24th, 2011

This month in Great Ideas, we’re focusing on a topic that’s critical to the success of any business–being an effective boss and leader.

Check out these 10 attributes of great bosses, and discover new ways you can motivate and inspire employees to perform at their best.

Employee Motivation Secrets

January 18th, 2011

As a leader, you want to get the best results from your team. And if you really want to create focus, improve morale and boost productivity, you need to celebrate! Celebration is essential to long-term success, and in this feature article you’ll find 12 effective ways to celebrate your wins.

Strategic Workforce Management for Central Texas Employers

January 18th, 2011

What is strategic staffing, and what can it do for your organization?

Many of our clients enjoy the benefits of our temporary staffing services for last-minute and short-term staffing requirements.  But depending upon your unique workforce needs, one of Priority Personnel’s strategic workforce solutions may be the right choice to help your company stay flexible, competitive and efficient.

Here is a quick overview of our services and what they can do for you:

Planned / Just-in-Time Staffing:  Regular, planned use of temporaries to handle your peak production periods, seasonal activities or special projects.  Our staffing experts will help you analyze your workload throughout the year and determine the right times to bring in supplemental staff.  Together, we can develop a proactive staffing plan that saves you money and minimizes your need for layoffs by supplementing your core workforce with temporary help during your busiest periods. 

Find out how Priority Personnel helped a manufacturing client use planned staffing to reduce costs, while effectively managing their busiest season.

On-Site Staffing:  If you have high-volume staffing needs, Priority Personnel can provide a staffing manager to work on-site, directly at your location.  Your on-site coordinator will handle every facet of coordinating, ordering, planning and tracking of contingent employees.  Because the on-site coordinator acts as the central contact for hiring managers, coordinates recruiting activities and handles personnel-related issues, you are free to focus on your most important priorities.

Find out how Priority Personnel helped a manufacturing client use an on-site coordinator to simplify staffing and give more time back to HR.

Managed Staffing:  The staffing service assumes responsibility and accountability for your entire staffing function, from hiring and recruiting to managing temporary employees.  Managed staffing services provide the convenience of having a single source for all your staffing requirements.  It eliminates the most time-consuming and frustrating parts of hiring, delivers the best candidates available, improves efficiency and reduces your staffing costs.

Priority Personnel – Your Organization’s Key to Strategic Staffing Success

As a leading San Marcos staffing firm, Priority Personnel can do much more than provide great workers for your short-term needs.  Our staffing professionals can help you critically examine your workforce needs, and develop a staffing strategy that makes your organization more successful.  Call us today to schedule a free workforce consultation.

Best Wishes for a Prosperous New Year

December 30th, 2010

As we look ahead to the promise of a new year, we also hope that 2011 presents a lot more opportunities for us to work together. 

From all of us at Priority Personnel, we’d like to wish you a happy, healthy and successful year ahead.

How to Spot Resume Fraud

December 13th, 2010

Have you ever caught someone lying on their resume or job application?

Unfortunately, it’s become a VERY common problem, and it can lead to big and expensive hiring mistakes!  In fact, more than 30% of resumes are fraudulent!  With all the competition for jobs, people have become more willing than ever to stretch the truth or tell outright lies.

So what can you do to protect your company?  Learn how you can spot resume fraud and more importantly what you should do when it is spotted.

Strategic Staffing Success: A Case Study

November 30th, 2010

Planned staffing and an on-site coordinator help San Marcos, TX manufacturer reduce costs while effectively managing their busiest season

The Problem:
For years, Bluescope Buildings North America, a manufacturer of pre-engineered metal buildings, struggled to manage the fluctuating demands of a cyclical business.  In the past, the San Marcos company had dealt with their seasonal upswing the way many other manufacturers do – by scrambling to hire workers when business surged, and then either finding enough work to keep those individuals busy once the rush ended, or laying them off and paying unemployment.

Faced with yet another busy season, Plant Manager Joel Williams turned to Priority Personnel, their preferred staffing service, for help.

The Solution:
Dan Roy, President and CEO of Priority Personnel, worked directly with Joel and his HR department to develop a cost-effective way to staff Bluescope’s peak production periods with qualified workers, without incurring the costs (e.g. recruiting, unemployment, workers’ compensation, taxes) of their current hire-then-fire cycle.  After examining the detailed records of Bluescope’s ordering history with Priority Personnel, it became clear that a planned staffing option would best suit their workforce needs.

Implementing a planned staffing solution included the following steps:

  • Bluescope and Priority set new wage levels to attract the best temporary industrial talent for their needs.
  • Together, they then identified the types of positions, required skills and number of workers needed to manage Bluescope’s busy season.
  • Priority Personnel began aggressively recruiting, screening and testing candidates to develop a talent pool for Bluescope that was available to work at a moment’s notice.
  • Next, Bluescope reduced its core workforce to a level needed to adequately staff the low end of their business cycle. 
  • Priority Personnel then implemented a just-in-time staffing system, rapidly delivering talented temporary workers to handle Bluescope’s upsurges in production.  At one point during their busy season, 1/3 of Bluescope’s workforce was supplied by Priority Personnel!
  • To facilitate their large temporary workforce, Priority Personnel provided an on-site coordinator who worked at BlueScope during their busy season.  This individual assigned temporary workers, conducted safety orientations and handled daily temporary employee issues as they arose.

The Results:
Planned staffing now complements this manufacturer’s core workforce to effectively manage the seasonal changes in their production levels.  As a result of this proactive workforce management solution, Bluescope enjoys the following benefits:

  • Ability to quickly ramp-up staff to manage peak production periods, without the additional expense and administrative burden of hiring and then laying-off permanent staff.
  • Cost-effective management of variable labor costs.  When the demand is not there, neither is the labor cost.
  • Reduced personnel expenses.  By using temporary labor, Bluescope pays only for productive hours worked – and avoids paying benefits, payroll taxes, workers’ compensation, unemployment, etc.
  • Simplified staffing.  An on-site representative manages the day-to-day administration of a large temporary workforce.
  • More time for HR.  Because Priority Personnel handles recruiting, screening, testing and background checks for their temporary workers, Bluscope’s HR staff is free to focus on other important priorities.
  • High quality workers.  Priority Personnel anticipates Bluescope’s staffing needs.  Proactive recruiting has yielded higher quality workers, some of whom have been offered direct positions with Bluescope.
  • Minimal discipline, safety and attendance problems.  Contrary to what the Plant Manager expected, Priority Personnel’s temporary workforce has been as hardworking, safe and reliable as Bluescope’s direct employees.

“Using Priority Personal to staff our facility during our peak periods of business has allowed us to reduce our variable cost for labor.  The strategic plan to engage a higher quality temporary employee with the skill sets needed to meet our business demands paid great dividends for us this past year.  Priority’s ability to provide 1/3 of my total workforce with good, trained professional individuals was outstanding.”
Joel A. Williams
Plant Manager
Bluescope Buildings North America

Priority Personnel – Your Organization’s Key to Strategic Staffing Success

As a leading San Marcos staffing firm, Priority Personnel can do much more than provide great workers for your short-term needs.  Our staffing professionals can help you critically examine your workforce needs, and develop a staffing strategy that makes your organization more successful.  Call us today to schedule a free workforce consultation.

Succession Planning – Identifying New Leaders for Your Organization

November 16th, 2010

The boomers are retiring.

This is not news, of course, but their mass exodus from the workforce does create a potential problem for many organizations – namely, identifying new leaders to fill the boomers’ shoes.  In addition to closing the talent gap this generation will leave, other reasons to proactively develop new leaders include:

  • Keeping pace with constantly changing business strategies
  • Quickly filling new roles created by organizational growth, as we emerge from the recession
  • Adapting to job realignments caused by mergers and acquisitions
  • Heading-off potential skill shortages
  • Increasing employee engagement and productivity

Does your company’s succession plan address all these issues?  The truth is, many organizations are too busy managing the daily pressures created by a lengthy recession to look that far down the road.  But to win the talent war, you need to start assessing, planning and developing leaders now.  Here are a few strategies to make your succession planning more effective:

  • Create a plan before talent needs become talent crises.  Remove some of the stress caused by finding the right person for a job by planning for future needs now.  Careful planning will minimize workforce disruption, increase knowledge transfer and increase employee engagement / loyalty by providing clear career paths.
  • Let your best employees know about your plans for them.  Tell your key talent that your company has high expectations for them.  Prepare them and increase their buy-in by letting them know that you will be investing in their futures and will be facilitating moves to enhance their professional development.
  • Define criteria and profiles against which to measure employees’ potential.  Logically, you want to develop employees with the greatest potential – but potential for what?  Work together with key executives to map out the future requirements for success in key positions (i.e., what will tomorrow’s leaders have to be able to do to succeed in these roles?).  Use these criteria as a measuring stick for evaluating each individual’s potential.
  • Assess current employees’ skills and competencies.  Once success criteria have been defined, you must invest the time and money to objectively and validly assess what your internal talent can do.  While each company must decide which tools best fit its individual needs, popular ones include:  assessments from the candidate’s circle of influence; career achievement summaries to capture work experiences; psychometric tools; behavioral interviews to probe against established criteria for success.
  • Create plans to close the gap.  Once you understand where current employees are and where they need to be, you can customize talent development plans to close the gap.  As potential leaders progress in their growth, keep them updated on hiring decisions.  Monitor their interest and involve them in the development process as much as possible, to keep them invested for the long-term.  Most importantly, make sure their career aspirations are aligned with your succession plans, to keep you both working toward the same goal.

After assessing employees, some businesses find a lack of internal talent with the potential for leadership.  That’s where Priority Personnel can help.  We can recruit, screen and identify individuals who have the skills, competencies and behavior traits to become future leaders within your organization.  Call us to find out more about our direct hire services for Central Texas employers.