Priority Personnel Blog

Strategies to Make Staffing Work for Central Texas Employers

January 17th, 2012

If there’s one thing you can be certain of in 2012, it’s change.

Issues like the fragile economy, looming elections and changing employment legislation make it more difficult than ever to predict what will happen in the next year – let alone the next month.  Constant changes in your workload and available labor only compound your challenges.  As such, a staffing approach that worked for you in the past may not prove as effective this year.

This doesn’t mean you’re out of luck; it just means that you may need to re-examine your staffing strategy.  So start 2012 off right.  Consider these staffing best practices which have proven effective for corporate human resources executives across the country, courtesy of workforce.com:

  • Make sure the staffing partner has an adequate balance sheet. Given the relatively low barriers to entry, it is too common to see staffing companies struggle financially.
  • Be sure the staffing partner has sufficient size and financial resources to manage the contract. Sourcing 100 or more contract workers on an ongoing basis requires a very different type of staffing organization than providing two or three temps at a time.
  • Visit the local office of the staffing company as part of the due-diligence process, especially for large projects, to make sure the operation meets expectations.
  • Give your staffing partner feedback on all candidates that you review to help refine the recruiting strategy, and make it easier to find the best candidates.
  • Be open-minded about “teachable” candidates, especially for hard-to-fill skill sets. Candidates who are a strong cultural fit and possess transferable skills are likely to succeed and thrive with some training and support.
  • Provide enough training, rewards and feedback to keep temps engaged and motivated. One employer notes that small rewards—a free lunch for good performance, for example—go a long way toward winning the loyalty of temps.
  • Beware of unfair negative stereotypes about the quality of temp workers. Temps can be—and often are—as qualified as full-time employees, and their skills can be equally useful.

Priority Personnel – Your Best Staffing Strategy for 2012

Priority Personnel is an award winning staffing firm that has been serving the central Texas area since it was founded in 1993 in San Marcos, Texas.  Over the years, we’ve grown to become a recognized leader in the development, implementation and support of personnel services in Central Texas.  Rest assured, we are a stable, successful partner you can trust with your all your workforce management needs – no matter how large or small.

Call us to schedule a 2012 workforce consultation. Together, we can identify your upcoming needs and develop a proactive, cost-effective staffing strategy that will deliver real bottom-line results.

New Recruiting Technology and Media Trends for Central Texas Employers

November 29th, 2011

Have you seen the commercial where the guy is standing in his front door while his new 3D TV is being delivered, only to see a van drive by advertising 4D TV?

Technology – even recruiting and interviewing technology – is changing rapidly.

Until recently, job boards were the “latest and greatest” way to connect with job seekers.  The advent of social media, smart phones and free online video technology, however, has created yet another paradigm shift in the way we attract and recruit top talent.

While job boards should remain part of your recruiting mix, consider incorporating the following emerging media to remain competitive:

Remote Interviews

Online interview technology has revolutionized the hiring process.  This cost-effective tool allows you to rapidly connect with viable candidates anywhere, while greatly simplifying interviewing logistics.  Instead of spending valuable time and money on travel, you can now use services like Skype and TokBox to virtually meet applicants and determine their potential early on in the recruiting process.

Mobile Technology

According to statistics from Pew Research Center, 83 percent of Americans own cell phones.  Nearly half of them (44 percent) use their mobile devices to get access to the internet.  Leverage mobile technology to reach potential job seekers anytime, anywhere by sending text alerts about your job openings and recruiting events.  Additionally, you may want to consider making your website more “smart phone friendly,” so that it facilitates the job search and application processes.

Video

Digital video enables you to get your company’s message across like no social media tool can.  By allowing candidates to literally see and hear what the true employee experience is like, video offers a powerful way to influence and engage potential candidates:

  • Use online videos to enrich your online job postings.
  • Add video clips of your offices, production facilities, etc.
  • Interview current employees about what it’s like working for your organization.
  • Demonstrate ways you take care of your employees, work for the greater good and/or stay on the cutting edge of your industry.

To ensure your videos are viewed, add them to your homepage, job postings and social media, or use QR codes to direct job seekers to them.

Twitter

Twitter can help you contact candidates in real time by instantly broadcasting or “tweeting” available jobs.  If you have a Twitter account:

  • Search for relevant hashtags that qualified candidates might be using and integrate them into your tweets.  Tools like Search.Twitter.com, Twubs and Tagalus can help you identify hashtags your target candidates may be using.
  • Shout out new job listings.  Services like jobshouts.com and jobamatic.com allow you to automatically feed new job listings to your Twitter account.  You can even add custom prefixes and hashtags to make the content more user-friendly and searchable.

Recruiting technology will continue to evolve at a rapid pace. If, like many employers, you find this rate of change intimidating, remember that you don’t have to go it alone.

As an award-winning employment agency serving central Texas employers since 1993, Priority Personnel can help you win the war for talent.  Strategically located in San Marcos, we can provide you with the most highly-qualified and trained professionals available throughout our service area. Contact us today!

Temporary Assignment Limits and Concerns About Benefits Liability

February 15th, 2011

In the wake of historic employment litigation (e.g., Vizcaino v. Microsoft), some companies have adopted policies limiting assignment length for temporary and contract employees from staffing firms.  Why?  These employers view assignment limits as a way to protect themselves from the kind of “retro-benefits” claims Microsoft faced back in the 1990s.

Unfortunately, these assignment limit policies have downsides.  They can cause economic harm to on-time temporary or contract employees whose assignments are terminated prematurely, and they can disrupt your company’s business operations.  To better protect your organization, you should closely examine its staffing policies to ensure that such limits are truly necessary – and not based on misinformation.

If you have questions about co-employment law, as it relates to assignment limits and associated benefits, here is a great resource with the answers you need.  The American Staffing Association’s Staffing Smarts Intelligence Report:  Assignment Limits and Concerns About Benefits Liability, by Edward A. Lenz, Esq., General Counsel, reviews the basic principles of law that apply to employee benefits plans, and then describes steps employers can take to avoid retro-benefits exposure:

Create a plan that expressly excludes staffing firm employees. The report suggests template language (that your legal counsel should review)  you can use for the purpose of excluding staffing firm employees from participation in your Erisa plan.

Use employee waivers. In addition to amending benefits plans, you may be able to achieve additional protection through agreements in which the staffing firm’s employees expressly waive their right to the company’s benefits.

Allow the staffing firm to handle employment related functions for temporary and contract staff, such as:  recruiting, screening, determining wages, hiring, firing, assigning, resolving disputes, disciplining, etc.

Keep the lines between direct staff and contingent staff clear. The report includes several other steps (such as channeling social invitations through the staffing firm) you can take to avoid blurring the distinction between your core staff and temporary employees.

Make Co-Employment Work with Priority Personnel. Read our tips for successful co-employment, or contact Priority Personnel with your staffing questions.  Our goal is to help you use staffing to achieve more.

New Technology in Human Resources – Striking a Balance Between IT and the Human Touch

February 1st, 2011

Has technology taken the ‘human’ out of Human Resources?

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) recently published a report on technology trends in the sector, and the overall conclusion was unsurprising:  today’s HR departments leverage IT to benefit almost every aspect of their daily operations.

Continual technology improvements, coupled with declining costs, has fueled a surge in HR’s usage of technology:

  • Software is being deployed to manage areas such as internal mobility, appraisal management, succession planning and personal development.
  • E-recruitment and performance management software are dramatically improving HR’s ability to effectively execute PRM (people relationship management) and further solidify their organizations’ employer brands.
  • Applicant tracking and hiring management systems are streamlining processes and driving down costs.

But will this IT success come at a price for some HR organizations?  While technology can reduce the administrative burden associated with HR and enable them to focus on more strategic issues, HR will always be about people management – which requires human interaction and face-to-face contact.  As a result, HR organizations should attempt to strike a balance between systems and the human element.

As Jeff Phelps, President of WorkforceLogic/ABE Services says, “We can’t ever begin to think of treating people like equipment or some sort of inanimate commodity…The best of all worlds is a holistic solution that combines technology with the human element to facilitate putting the right person in the right job at the right time.”

HR technologies making the biggest impact:

  • Employee self-service
  • Workflow technologies
  • Vendor management systems
  • Applicant tracking systems
  • Hiring management systems
  • E-recruitment software

Learn more.

Find out more about the evolution of IT in HR, as well as key findings from the SHRM’s HR technology survey, by following this link to the HR Management article “Technology aids the human touch.”

When it comes to staffing your business effectively, both IT and the human touch are critical.  Priority Personnel leverages state-of-the-art technologies with distinctly personal service to deliver customized solutions that maximize your staffing ROI.  Contact us today to learn more about our staffing solutions for San Marcos, Texas employers.

Use Temporary Staffing to Manage Your Workload

May 21st, 2010

Peaks and valleys in your workload can create big challenges for staffing. If you have too few people, you can end up with loads of stress, lots of mistakes, and a negative impact on your service and even your sales.

But if you over-staff, you end up wasting money on payroll and creating a drain on productivity.

So what can you do?

Click here for an article about planned staffing–you’ll discover a better way to even out the highs and lows in your workload, save money, and reduce employment risk.

Why the Lowest Price Isn’t Always the Best Value in Staffing

April 20th, 2010

Most of us today are conditioned to look for the best possible price.  In most cases, this makes good economic sense.  But when it comes to staffing services, the company offering the lowest prices isn’t necessarily going to deliver the best value.

Here are a few good reasons why shopping around for the lowest-priced temporary employees might not be the wisest use of your staffing dollars:

  • To offer you the lowest price, a staffing service may be forced to cut back on the quality and amount of service they provide.  They may not be able to afford the same depth of recruiting and screening.  As a result, they may have more difficulty finding the right candidates for your specific needs.
  • Because of simple supply and demand, the staffing agencies that offer better wages to their temporary employees will most likely get the more talented, skilled, reliable and experienced applicants.  Any staffing firm can find a “warm body” to fill your position.  But finding a quality employee that truly fits your organization may be too crucial to risk – especially for what may boil down to a few cents per hour.
  • Not getting the right person for the job can have very costly ramifications.  For example, a temporary employee who is less than qualified for the position can cause the following unforeseen expenses:
    - additional time (money) up front to adequately orient and train the temporary
    - increased supervision for a less qualified temporary
    - mistakes and reworks – the time, money and materials involved in re-doing the work of a less qualified temporary
    - poor productivity – the amount of work a sub-par employee fails to complete (compared to a qualified individual)

The bottom line is, many things in business aren’t worth risking.  The quality of your human capital is definitely one of them.

Priority Personnel:  the Best Staffing Value for Central Texas Employers
When it comes to the quality of Priority Personnel’s candidates, you get what you pay for – skilled, reliable, hard-working and experienced people who truly fit your needs.  Rest assured, we will always deliver the best value for your staffing dollar.