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Does Your Company Need An HR Specialist?

As an owner of a small business, operating costs are one of the things that can keep you up at night. As a result, you likely handle several different jobs and responsibilities that would normally be handled by a hired specialist within a larger company. Rather than hiring an accountant or bookkeeper, you might handle payroll yourself. To save money on IT services, you spend an hour troubleshooting a stubborn POS system when the need arises. And, wary of the costs of a professional recruiter, you end up reading when you can find the time.

This is all perfectly acceptable – so far as you’re still accomplishing all of your other duties. As soon as these responsibilities start to cut into your primary roles, you run the risk of failing in all of them. As businesses grow, it’s easy to justify spending on things like CPAs and IT support teams. However, one of the last areas to receive the necessary attention and expertise is HR, especially when there is the perception that HR will increase your operating costs, not reduce them.

Which brings us to a question all owners of growing businesses grapple with:
When is a dedicated HR professional (or department) necessary?

Many business owners are looking for a hard and fast answer, usually in the form of a number of employees. It’s true that if you have 30-50 employees, you’ve probably begun the process of hiring an HR specialist. Once you hit 50 employees and need to comply with applicable state and federal regulations, an HR professional becomes a no-brainer. However, the real number could be much lower for your business, in relation to the factors listed below.

How much of your time is taken up by HR-related duties?

If you find yourself struggling to make time for your core responsibilities due to a litany of HR-related tasks, it’s time to consider hiring help. These kinds of tasks include recruiting and hiring, updating your employee handbook, and handling compliance issues. Beyond these tasks, you might find your daily schedule eaten up by an inordinate amount of time dealing with internal disputes, lackluster employee conduct, and strategies to retain great employees. If these critically important duties aren’t getting the proper amount of attention, you should seek the experience of a trained human resources specialist.

Do you have an effective system for reporting or managing internal complaints and disputes?

The most frequently-cited reason for a small business owner to neglect hiring HR help is cost. However, not having the right HR guidance can be the exact opposite of cost-effective. Ask any company that’s battled a wrongful termination suit or lost quality talent due to poor company culture if skimping on HR was worth it, and you won’t be surprised by the answer. Regardless of the size of your company, the risk management benefits of a dedicated HR specialist will always be worth the investment.

Are you satisfied with the quality of talent that your business attracts, as well as your business’s ability to retain them?

As your business becomes established, it might make sense to handle talent acquisition by yourself. After all, who would know best the talents and skills required to succeed in your company, if not you? Unfortunately, while you may indeed know the necessary skills and attributes, you may not be finding the best talent available. It takes an experienced recruiter to know where to look – and to attract the perfect candidates for your positions. Until you’ve hired the expertise of a human resources specialist, you’ll need to be satisfied with knowing that you may be hiring “the best talent you could find,” not necessarily the best talent for the position.

In short, you should hire a human resources specialist as soon as possible.

Whether your business has 2 employees or 42, there is significant value in utilizing an HR consultant to grow your business. Your business may not need an entire HR department, or even a full-time dedicated HR professional, but you’ll have peace of mind with HR support to help you navigate troublesome human resources matters.

Contact us here if you need help with:

  • Recruiting and hiring talent
  • Employee handbook updates
  • State and federal compliance
  • Workplace culture and productivity
  • Payroll, benefits, and compensation research
  • Career transition and outplacement services

If you have any questions related to your company’s particular needs, don’t hesitate to ask! Contact us today and we’ll reach out to you ASAP to provide the solutions you need.

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5 Tips For Writing The Best Resume With The Fewest Words

Whether you’re drafting a new resume or changing an old one, it might be tempting to write a resume that could be mistaken for a small novel. After all, this is an important document meant to list your achievements, work experiences and educational background. Shouldn’t that list be long? A document that proclaims your talents and accomplishments should not make a hefty thumping sound when it’s placed on your prospective employer’s desk!

However, depending on your career and the job for which you’re applying, a long resume could damage your chances of being hired. It’s important to keep your resume concise by including only the information relevant to promoting  yourself for the position. If you find your resume is filled with “fluff,” or information that serves no purpose other than to pad out the length of your resume, apply some of these helpful tips to hone your message and showcase your talents in a professional, to-the-point manner.

Make sure your resume passes the “skim test.”

Hiring managers review a lot of resumes. For any single position, based on the amount of public interest, he or she might read dozens or even hundreds of resumes. As a time-saving measure, most managers will first skim over your qualifications just to ensure they don’t waste time reading a verbose essay by someone who doesn’t even meet the job’s basic requirements. Because of this, your resume needs to be easy to skim through.

Take a copy of your resume and quickly scan over it. If someone were to only take a few seconds to read over it, would they know the most important things about you? Make sure that any qualifications that you think are especially important stand out on paper. Bold or otherwise set apart your skills and experiences that are listed as essential to the position. Further, you should write your introduction like it’s the only thing they’ll ever read. Ensure that it gives your “elevator pitch” and provides a clear picture of your abilities in a few sentences.

Keep it current.

As you continue to progress down your career path, you’ll find that employers care far less about what you were doing two decades ago than what you were doing in the past few years. You’ll often find that your earliest endeavors aren’t in line with what you’re actively pursuing today. If older positions don’t contribute to the job you’re currently seeking, leave them off the resume. Remember by eliminating irrelevant or unnecessary information, your most important qualifications become more visible.

Make updates to your resume that are specific to the job you’re seeking.

Even if you’re looking for a limited range of positions with relatively similar job duties, each hiring manager may be  looking for different characteristics, certifications, and experiences. Pay close attention to the jobs you’re applying for, and tailor your resume specifically to that position.

Does one employer seem more concerned about qualifications in technology? If so, draw more attention to the software and hardware you’re familiar with. Does one hiring manager value experience from one of your past jobs more than another? Flesh out your job description for the valuable experience, and consider minimizing or eliminating details about the less applicable job. Each employer will be looking for something different, so be sure to identify their biggest needs or concerns and address them with extra emphasis in your resume.

Eliminate unnecessary educational credentials.

It might make you feel nostalgic to include your graduating high school class on your resume, but do yourself a favor by keeping that in the past. It should go without saying that hiring managers care more about your work and professional experience than the activities you were involved with in high school. Unless an achievement propelled you toward your current goal or you are entering the work world directly from high school, the high school information is not needed.  If you have attained a degree that’s relevant to the position you’re seeking, include it by all means but be targeted in what educational credentials you list.

Be readable, not pretentious.

If you use big words to impress your potential employers, you’re more likely to give them a headache than a good impression. Again, this comes down to the fact that many hiring managers have a stack of resumes that reaches the ceiling. If your writing is bloated with esoteric industry terminology, unwieldy passive language (“this duty was handled by me”), or your resume otherwise looks like it was written with the aid of a thesaurus, consider simplifying or eliminating the content in question. Focus on the main objective of your resume, which is to present your qualifications as clearly as possible, not prove to your future boss that your minor in English is useful.

To recap, it’s not so much the actual length of a resume that determines its effectiveness, but the actual content. If you’re applying for a particularly ambitious post that’s the culmination of years of hard work, it may be necessary for you to write a 3-page resume if that’s what’s required to provide the full picture. However, for most applicants, less is more. Clarity is perhaps the most important quality of a successful resume, and it can only be achieved by focusing on selling yourself for the position and nothing else.