The Hiring Process – Quick Tips

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True, the Washington Post reported more job losses, but things are looking up. Job losses are slowing down! Perhaps your sustainably-run enterprise has found the perfect niche market and things are taking off. Or, maybe your small business is finding more work than you have staff to cover. Here are some tips that might help you hire in a sustainable fashion- keeping your business, and the community thriving.

1. Adopt a written equal employment opportunity policy and prohibit discrimination regardless of age, country of origin, disability, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, race, religion, sexual orientation or veteran status. Make it a policy to provide a living wage/ benefits package to full-time employees if possible. For more information, see the People section of our “How-To” guide, and this Q&A on pertinent laws.

2. Consider if work can be reorganized or some tasks eliminated in order to avoid hiring

3. Decide if volunteers or interns are appropriate. In general, there should be substantial non-monetary benefits that would make volunteering for your business worthwhile, such as educational and social opportunities and others. Charitable enterprises can attract volunteers with the opportunity to contribute to the greater good, for example.

4. Connect with local colleges and universities to recruit for interns or part-time employees

5. Consider applying for grants and other funding–also see Financing your Business in our ‘How-To’ guide

6. Write a job description, including hours and expected salary range and, of course, confirm that it fits in your budget

7. Conduct a recruitment process that can reach a broad and diverse pool of potential candidates

8. Screen applicants by resume, phone, and/or personal interview to find the best fit. Here’s an article from Fortune magazine about hiring passionate employees. Some organizations have special essay questions, and demonstrations of skills as part of the application process, such as delivering a short mock presentation to a customer or client.

9. Orientation: remember to inform new hires of your sustainability goals and strategies (including business, people, and environment), and ways they can contribute to them.

Some places to post a hiring notice:

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Amanda is currently pursuing a Master's degree in City and Regional Planning with a specialization in land/use and environmental planning at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Before coming to UNC, she was a Park Naturalist at Gulf Branch Nature Center, for Arlington County, Virginia...
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