According to this survey, 43% of landscaping contractors and lawn care operators in North America stated that a shortage of quality labor was a major challenge. Meanwhile, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2019, the unemployment rate fell to a record low of 3.5%. Put simply, there are enough jobs to be filled but not enough people who can actually fill them.
In the last few years, the labor gap has become even bigger owing to the restrictions on H-2B visas in the country. It has made it difficult for business owners to bring in foreign nationals. Now more than ever, it is extremely important for business owners to be resourceful and hire like pros.
Here are our top 5 tips to hire like a pro
Here are our top 5 tips you must keep in mind while hiring for your landscaping business.
1. Always be hiring
A common mistake that landscapers make is to start hiring when they start getting more jobs. One should always be hiring. You never know when your reliable crew member leaves you. Have an “Apply Now” link on your website round the year. Have a separate “Internship Applications” link as well. You never know when the right person reaches out.
2. Online is the way to go
Apart from traditional ways of advertising like flyers & posters, you should definitely market your jobs online. According to this report, 79% of job seekers use online tools during their job search. Post on Indeed, Ziprecruiter and Simplyhired. Your company’s own social media accounts can be very useful to reshare and spread the word on these job openings.
3. Don’t give up on the “referral” route
Referrals are a safe way of reaching the right candidates. Do not shy away from the good old route of employee referrals. This simply means – offering a small incentive when a referral converts to a successful employee.
4. Always do a background check
While someone may come across as the perfect fit because they might have a great work experience or be referred by your trusted employee, you must always protect yourself and your business by having a background check before you actually hire them. To check for criminal records, you can use a site such as CrimCheck.
5. Use software and automation to bridge the labor gap
There are a lot of business management software solutions available in the market that can automate inefficient processes in the industry. For example, Attentive’s automation technology allows you to automate the sales process and augment your sales team’s capability, similarly robotic mowers allow you to augment the capabilities of your crew teams. Finding good people is the hardest thing to do. Do not hire them and make them do repetitive tasks. When you find the right person, make him/her do tasks that cannot be done by technology.
What are some of the best hiring practices that have worked for you? Please feel free to tell us in the comments below.