The Hourly Recruitment Process
By: Jill Friedman
The hourly recruitment process can be both easy and painstaking at the same time. Typically with hourly personnel we get a broad mix of people in the office to interview. In my office, I have had everything from people with blue hair who have spent time in prison, to white collar workers making over $200K a year who got laid off, and are seeking gainful employment. After sitting and chatting with them for about 10-15 minutes I can get a pretty good idea whether they will work out as a good candidate or not.
Much of the interview process is about reading body language and differentiating what a person is saying versus what they really mean. Every person that comes in for a job interview is typically going to put their best foot forward to have their best shot at the opportunity. You would think one wouldn’t walk into a new possibility with a bad attitude and say “I don’t really need a job, I’m just here to see what you can do for me,” but you might be surprised to know that some people say and do. In our office, we find that typically the 18-25 year olds on average tend not to work out in the job market very well, at least when it comes to warehouse work or manual labor of sorts. There is a very large disconnect in our society between this age group and actually having to put in work to earn money, the millennials are definitely a different breed.
Some of our best hourly employees that have come through our firm, surprisingly enough have been between the ages of 25-45, and have either done jail time or been laid off and looking for something to hold them over until another direct placement job becomes available. These people have typically gone through some hard times in their lives, whether it is self-inflicted or out of their control, they understand the value and worth of hard labor and try to earn an honest living and have truly been revived by reality.
Let’s take a peek inside what it would look like as a candidate. I am looking for a warehouse worker with forklift experience being a bonus but not required, so I hop onto one of my many search engines available after going through our files of people that have already been prescreened. I find a young man who has worked in a warehouse before and seems like he would be capable of doing the job as described, so I give him a call and set him up with an interview to come into the office. He shows up at the office 5 minutes early for his interview and in his own vehicle, “first impression, he’s punctual, shows he is responsible,” I think to myself. He is dressed well and has everything he needs with him, so far this interview would seem off to a good start. He begins filling out paperwork, and we begin to chat. As an interviewer I ask many different questions, everything from what he is looking for in a new opportunity, to what his experience has been, and why he has left various work places in the past. At this point I will typically begin to describe the opportunity I have available so the candidate can decide if it is a good fit or not.
Everything up to this point seems to be running smoothly, then come the more serious questions. For some people this set of questions proves to be more difficult than others. We have to run a background check for this position, are we going to find anything on there? For almost everyone the immediate answer is always no. When posing the same questions in different manors, demeanors of the candidate can sometimes change and start to act differently and people tend to start opening up a little bit more, they start coming out with the truth. Now, this scenario doesn’t hold true for everyone, however it does play out this way more often than not. For some companies certain misdemeanors or even certain felonies don’t have an impact on one’s ability to be eligible for a job, for others, the company needs a squeaky clean background. This is where the body language and ability to interpret what someone is truly saying comes in very handy. I feel being a woman puts me at a slight disadvantage over my male counterparts in the office, because people are less likely to commit to a past discretion with a female than they are a fellow male, I have seen this situation unfold numerous times before my eyes.
When a person is deemed an appropriate candidate for a position, we consider them prescreened. We let the hiring manager know that we have some people ready for the position and wait for word from the hiring manager for a start date. If a person does not pass the prescreen portion for a specific job, we hold onto their information for the next hourly position that comes available that may be a better fit for them based on what we found in the screening process. Our process, however long and tedious, really helps our employer clients with turnover and has yielded great employees, which have put up some serious numbers for them. Great thing is, many of our hourly employees stay with us for years!