Hiring and Onboarding for Agencies

A Predictable, Repeatable Process for Hiring and Retaining A Players

You wouldn’t spend your Monday burning dolla bills, so don’t waste your money on a bad hire. A bad hire can cost your business $15k +

Productivity suffers, and that just plain hurts. Plus, hiring the wrong employee makes your brand look bad.

How about let’s fix all that ASAP?

Good employees in the right positions empower the engine that is your brand. S.C.A.L.E. your agency through an airtight, replicable hiring process, and streamlined onboarding. 

Ready to give us the reins? Here’s how we’ll right and steer that ship. 

S.C.A.L.E.

We use a proprietary framework, called S.C.A.L.E, to help agency owners take control of their internal and external processes with proven optimization strategies. The result is a business that scales with far less effort so you can find more harmony in your work-life balance. 

Sound good? Let’s break down the S.C.A.L.E. framework for hiring and onboarding. 

S. See What’s Happening 

Your agency is as unique as you and your team members. The S.C.A.L.E. framework is customized to your particular needs and business operations. During the first step, we’ll figure out exactly what you need to streamline your agency hiring processes. 

We’ll show you how to attract, find, and retain the right people for your organization so you don’t keep running into all this not-so-fun stuff: 

  • You’ve hired the wrong people too many times to count. But you don’t know how you manage to keep churning.
  • You’ve hired a great person for your job, with no idea how to replicate the process for future hires. 
  • Great candidates fill out your application, but many of them don’t finish the hiring and onboarding process. 
  • You’re struggling to retain great employees.
  • You keep underestimating the costs of hiring new people. 
  • You have a great team but are growing too quickly and not sure how new hires will jell.

Together, we’ll pinpoint what’s not working in your agency and engineer a strategy designed to tweak and fix the specific issues plaguing your productivity. 

The second step in the S.C.A.L.E. framework will look at your current hiring processes and see how they’re operating. This is where we establish a baseline so we can optimize your processes for greater growth and success. 

C. Create a Baseline

Issue numero uno we see agencies make with hiring and onboarding is they significantly underestimate the associated costs. 

When you don’t know what you’re up against, you can’t fix it. During this stage of the S.C.A.L.E. framework, we’ll take a fine toothed comb over your:

  • Established budgets for hiring and onboarding
  • Your timelines for hiring and onboarding
  • Any gaps in talent, capabilities, and roles that need filled

Once we’ve established a baseline, we’ll fill in the cracks and gaps in your hiring and onboarding, and amplify the good stuff you’re doing. 

A. Amplify how you do it 

Here, we take what you’re doing well currently and bump it up a notch (or ten). So, how do we work our optimization magic? We’ve got a few tricks up our sleeves: 

  • Our Hiring Calculator gives us an accurate picture of your hiring and onboarding costs. Voila! Now we’ve got a budget to work with. 
  • We identify and quantify meaningful data related to your hiring and onboarding processes, so we have the insight needed for optimization. 
  • We use measurable, accurate, attainable KPIs for uncovering things like time to hire and time to productivity. 
  • We’ll systemize the recruiting and onboarding process so you can build a powerhouse team with high morale and explosive productivity. 
  • You’ll get guidance for training your team so you can cultivate that go-getter culture you want and stop repeating yourself eighty bazillion times a day. 

You might be thinking we’ll have to stop your business operations to get under the hood of your hiring and onboarding vehicle. But nope, you’d be wrong (no offense).

We get it. Your business can’t just stop. We’ve gotta climb aboard a moving train that we’ll be fixing on the fly. Once we get your hiring and onboarding processes buttoned up, it’s time to lead and delegate. 

L. Lead & Delegate 

You can’t sit back and relax while your business hums along in the background if you don’t delegate. During the L step, we’ll show you how to lead with implementation. 

Learn how to delegate appropriately. Track progress, and get your business scaling on autopilot and hiring the right people every time you’ve got a need to fill. 

Next, it’s time to get out of the way and watch your business grow without you needing to manage it hands-on.  

E. Exit and oversee 

This part wraps everything up so you can make a graceful exit from managing the day-to-day. Instead, you’ll be overseeing from afar because you’ll be watching your metrics create the a-players your business needs to grow and scale. 

Look forward to going from, “OMG I have to run everything and why is nothing working the way I want?!” 

to 

“Oh, this is nice — hanging out in my PJs at home watching Netflix while my business makes money.” #covidJokes

So let’s get you there! 

Level Up Your Agency Hiring and Onboarding Process with S.C.A.L.E.

Start now. Use our handy dandy Hiring Calculator and download our free Hiring Hacks guide. 

You’re only as good as your weakest link. Let’s make sure that your weakest link is as strong as steel. 

Tighten up your hiring process and save weeks looking for your huckleberry. Optimize your onboarding, and you’ll retain employees, increase morale, and scale your agency fast. 

Request your free session today. 

Help Me Out ScaleTime

KPIs for Growth: Measuring Hiring and Onboarding

Employees are the engine that power your business success. But business owners often underestimate the cost of a new team member

So what are those costs? Roughly 30% of that person’s first-year salary. 

Make a bad hire, and those costs will skyrocket. 

74% of surveyed businesses have made the mistake of hiring the wrong person for the job. So if this is a misstep you’ve made, you’re not alone.

So don’t feel too down about it. Tomorrow’s another day and this is something we can fix so you never make the same mistake again.  

An airtight hiring and onboarding process is critical for your agency’s bottom line and will keep the wrong candidates out of your system. 

With the right hiring and onboarding KPIs, you’ll improve the quality of the hire while streamlining the hiring process. 

These KPIs will work for both in-person and remote hiring. Let’s break them down. 

How Putting Aces in Their Places Benefits Your Agency

Introverts make great front desk receptionists! No, no, they don’t. 

Bad hires can sap your team’s productivity and performance. They also risk legal fees for unlawful termination. 

You want to make sure you have the right person for a position. Otherwise, the costs of a bad hire will eat into your revenue stream. 

Here are just a few of the benefits hiring the right person for the job for your agency:

  • Decrease the time and expense of training
  • Improve employee morale
  • Increase retention rates
  • Make customers happy with better customer service

Using KPIs for onboarding and hiring will also reduce the costs of reviewing resumes, recruitment fees, and time spent interviewing. 

Time to Hire KPI

Recruiters and hiring managers, listen up: 

If you’re going to master any of these KPIs, make this one a top priority. 

How come? Because the time to hire KPI helps you:

  • Optimize your application process
  • Protect your company’s productivity, revenue, and brand image
  • Ensure that you’re interviewing only the top candidates

On average, and depending on the industry, time to hire can take anywhere from 14 to 63 days. 

Let’s think about this for a hot minute. You’ve got an exciting, well-paid position available that you want to fill asap. 

Your job ad is drool-worthy and laser-targeted to your ideal candidate. It’s being advertised freaking everywhere. 

So, who do you think is going to jump at the chance to apply and try to snag this top-notch position first?

Hint: it won’t be the forks when all you need is a knife. 

Your best candidates are going to apply early in the process. Take too long to hire and have a lengthy hiring process, and your best and brightest will drop out. 

What’s left? A pool of mediocre candidates that, if you hire, can hurt your brand image and productivity. Ugh. That’s some rain on your wedding day. 

If you notice a lot of candidates starting an application but not finishing, then you might need to tweak your application and hiring process. 

Time to Hire = Date of Hire – Date Candidate Enters the Pipeline

Quality of Hire KPI

Ensure that your new employees have A’s across their employee scorecard with the quality of hire KPI. 

To measure this KPI, you’ll need to go through your retention and performance data. 

You’ll also want to measure how your new hires fit in with the company. 

Are you experiencing new hires leaving within the first six months? Then you’re probably screening for the wrong traits. 

Also, this KPI can help you determine where you’ve found your best hires, like social media, job boards, or references.

(Performance + Productivity + Retention) / N = Quality of Hire

Measuring Time to Productivity

Time to productivity measures how long it takes for a new hire to meet performance level expectations. Setting a KPI here will help you uncover any cracks in your onboarding process. 

The exact KPI you set to measure time to productivity will vary across teams. But suffice it to say, it shouldn’t differ too much from one person to the next within a particular group. 

Keep These Marketing Agency Hiring and Onboarding Best Practices in Mind

Before you start measuring your KPIs for growth, take the following action steps:

  • Be consistent — Use the same onboarding process for each new hire. Consistency will make it easier to extract meaningful data from the hiring process. 
  • Be warm — During the hiring process, candidates are looking at your agency with a sharp eye, wondering if they’re making the right choice. Make candidates feel welcome during the onboarding process so they won’t feel unappreciated and bail. 
  • Think of it as a relationship — Think it’s done and over after hiring? Not so. Guide your new hires and develop them after the onboarding process is done. This will help them stay engaged and feel appreciated enough to stay with you for the long haul. 

Is the hiring process an exercise in frustration for you? 

Get some of your time back with our free Hiring Hacks Guide. And keep these hiring and onboarding KPIs in mind when you’re ready to add a new member to your team. 

Gimme!

This hiring hack can save you 20+ hours

Putting a job posting up on a job site like Indeed is like throwing a grenade on top of a mountain and waiting for it to explode.

If you’ve created the right posting, you’re about to get an avalanche of resumes (one posting on Indeed can easily generate over 100 applications).

Few business owners have any reliable way for sorting through them.

Maybe you’re one of those people who spends 15 minutes on every single one, throwing away days in the process.

Or maybe you only review a certain number of resumes, and ignore the rest, potentially passing over the best candidate.

Either ways, after just a few reviews all resumes start to look the same.

Then you start second-guessing yourself.

And then the overwhelm takes over.

There’s a much, much better way.

After hiring hundreds employees of my own, and helping hundreds of clients do the same, I’ve developed a streamlined process that helps you quickly review the resumes you receive, while maintaining high standards to make sure you get the right candidate.

The process involves sorting employees into different buckets as quickly as possible. The Yes’s, maybes, hell nos, and people that might be good for something else. Each resume should take 30 seconds to review.

There are 4 key points you want to look for when you’re sorting through resumes.

        1.  Basic standards

There are a few questions we want to ask before we move on to the content of the resume:

  1. Is the person real? Yes, you might get spam resumes
  2. Is this resume formatted with any degree of professionalism?
  3. Are they based in a suitable location for the job?

       2.  Dependability

Here we’re looking to see if they’ve kept down a job for a year or longer, or if they have any big gaps in their resume. Although this doesn’t tell the full story, if a resume is filled with 3 and 6 month jobs, that’s a big red flag. Another red flag is if there are gaps in employment of more than a few months. Sure they could explain these issues, but we don’t have time to get everyone’s story here.

        3.  Experience

Looking at their job titles, do they have experience doing what you’ll need them to do? When we do this scan, we aren’t looking for someone with a perfect experience match (although that would be nice). What we’re looking for are job positions that are related to what we’re asking them to do, or ones that require similar skill sets.

        4.  Specific requirements

Are there any deal breakers or standards they must meet? Now is when you look for them. Certificates, degrees, or anything else that they must have.

At first this may take a minute or two, but believe me, after looking through a few resumes, you’ll be a pro.

Having too many resumes to review is a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. Following this process is an easy way to save time and money, while increasing your chances of finding the perfect hire for your company.

The Real Cost Of A New Team Member

Hiring an employee is one hell of an experience for entrepreneurs.

So many emotions bundled up into one decision.

One of the biggest challenges is figuring out how much an employee is going to cost.

I’m sure the first time you hired, you significantly underestimated how much it was going to cost.

Everyone does.

In fact, I find that most business owners often underestimate costs by 25%.

I’m gonna be real – that’s unacceptable, but it’s not too late.

Today I’ve got a few tips on how to budget for hiring, plus a handy hiring cost calculator that will help you get an accurate idea of how much it will actually cost.

To get started, there are few questions you need to ask yourself.

Once those are answered, head on over to the ScaleTime Hiring Calculator to get a clear budget prepared.

Pitfall#1 – Hiring a full time employee when all you need is a VA or freelancer

A lot of business owners who feel overwhelmed look to hire someone full time, so that they can “really focus on what’s important.” The challenge is sometimes the amount of overwhelm you feel is not directly correlated to how much work you have. Offloading a few tasks to a VA or freelancer will often clear enough off your plate, or the plate of your employees, to put you back in the driver’s seat.

Pitfall#2 Hiring (an expensive) senior team member because you don’t want to handhold

I see this all the time. In some cases, a business owner wants to find a team member who has experience doing exactly what you need them to do. In other cases, an employee is begging you to hire someone more experienced to handle tasks they aren’t equipped for.

Either way, your goal is to get someone who can hit the ground running. You don’t want to have to spend time training someone, hand-holding them through every aspect of their job.

It makes complete sense, but for most biz owners, it doesn’t work out. And the reason is because they don’t have the proper systems, documents, or training in place to help a new hire get up to speed. Without them, you could hire a college intern for 1/10th the price, and they’d only be slightly less effective. Even the most qualified employees still need to learn the ins and outs of your business before they’re ready to hit the ground running. Implementing proper hiring systems, and then hiring junior employees is often much easier and effective (you can mold them to your business because they haven’t had time to develop too many bad habits yet).

Pitfall#3 Underestimating costs

A lot of my clients say they want to hire someone worth 30K or 50K a year, and then go out looking for that person. The thing they don’t think about is that salary is just one part of the equation. Many other costs go into hiring, including:

    • Your time spent searching for candidates
    • Onboarding costs
  • Tax and benefits

The good news is – if you can avoid the first two pitfalls on your own, I can help you avoid the third. My Hiring Calculator helps you quickly estimate the true cost of that new hire. While most biz owners stick their finger in the air and hope things work out, you’ll begin the process bright eyed and bushy tailed.

Access the calculator here

Try it out and let me know what you think. If you were planning on hiring, how good were your estimates on how much it would cost vs. what you found using this calculator?

Lasting Teams That Are In It To Win It

“Juliana, how do I hire the right team members, the ones that are going to stick around and do a great job?”

Almost 35% of people quit a job within the first six months of being hired.

That’s a pretty big turnover rate when you stop to consider the time and resources devoted to recruiting, especially when you take lost revenue for business both large and small into consideration. No matter the size of your business, your goal is to keep profits — and your employee retention rates high – but, you may need to change your tactics in order to succeed.

With just a few simple changes to your hiring process, you will find yourself ahead of the game with a dedicated team behind you.

But first, let’s examine the numbers: Did you know that US companies spent a staggering $124 billion on recruiting efforts in 2012 alone? When it comes to hiring the right people, large firms lose when their dedicated HR departments waste resources hiring the wrong people. Small business owners lose even bigger with the time and effort the recruiting process takes from day to day operations. Sure, you played the game, asked the right questions, and are confident you hired the right people. And maybe you did hire the right people for the positions advertised. The question to ask yourself, however, is if you hired the right people for your team.

Did you know that most people leave because there are different expectations in the recruiting cycle, from the job posting to the interviewing process, which did not match the reality of the actual gig?

Perhaps they were holding out for another position with a different company and your offer was simply a waiting post. The “Maybes” behind why employee retention is such a gamble are numerous and can range from your business’ relaxed work environment and dog-friendly office not being the right fit to them taking a look at your five-year vision and deciding they might fit better elsewhere.

These are the very uncertainties you, or your HR team, should be addressing while actively recruiting new team members. It is during this crucial time for discovery that you should be making sure you are seeking out the people that are not only going to stick, but also help your business grow in the process. Your goal is to ultimately extend offers of employment to individuals with whom you will enjoy working and with whom you’ll probably be spending more time than you are willing to admit. So how do you do that?

For starters, realize that a perfectly written resume is only a part of employee retention and the big picture.

By paying attention life patterns or circumstances, you can predict a lot about your new team member’s longevity with your business. For example: A person who moves every two years, will probably move again. It’s possible their spouse is in the military. But if you do not do your due diligence, you shouldn’t be surprised when they do move again. What about the college student working for you part-time? They have graduation date that you must prepare for. Be ready to absorb them or replace them.

Now that you are thinking not only outside of the box, but beyond the resume, as well, it’s time to consider your options as a business owner. Start by putting yourself in a new employee’s shoes:

In order to make the transition from the newbie to a seasoned and valued member of your team, they need:

  • Solid infrastructure already in place; one which will allow access to systems, technology, and communication
  • Time to read your business literature
  • Business cards
  • Time to learn — and become acquainted to — their contacts

Without at least these building blocks already firmly established for your new team member to gather their bearings during the critical first five months, which, coincidentally, is the average time it takes for a new hire to fully acclimate to their work environment, the transition period will only be made all the rougher for them. Whether you are operating out of a corner office or half of a full tech garage, those operating manuals and trainings will increase the chance of getting your new hire up to speed and optimized.

Okay, so you’ve done your due diligence and are comfortable that your new hire isn’t moving overseas in seven months, checked their college diploma yourself to make sure the ink is dry, and their skill-set matches your needs for the open position perfectly. Even the office dog loves them because they’ve been bringing in dog biscuits and know how to give a good belly rub.

What if they still aren’t a good fit? What did you miss?

Through no fault of their own, your new hire may just not gel with the culture you have or are trying to create. Your best-case scenario is they are great, but the rest of your team doesn’t enjoy working with him or her. This is where you have to step back, reassess, and put the needs of the many before the needs of the one. In other words: don’t let the entire ship sink because one crew member isn’t working out or you end up with communication lapses and inefficiencies in cooperation. How do you do that?

TIP – By creating a personalized work culture test that applies specifically to your business’ personality and applying it during each and every recruiting and discovery period.

A friend asks people when referring potential hires to his team if they would introduce this person to their own mom. His clients are family units, thereby making it essential that each team member present themselves in a certain manner. I ask my own team to imagine a flight delay en route to a business trip mean three hours in the airport bar — which happens quite often. If they give the green light for inviting the potential newbie along for a cocktail, it’s a pretty clear and cut decision from there.

We can’t cage the superstars to stay forever, but we can try to figure out how who’s in for the long haul as we build our teams and continue moving forward.

The key factor, of course, is foreseeing who’s going to stick around.