Recruiting employees

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by grass-scapes, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. wbw

    wbw LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,072

    Some people don't see the connection.
  2. zimmatic

    zimmatic LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 416

    Grass Scapes:
    First CALM down it will be okay. The most staff that I have had at one time is 6 people and I can feel you pain. I have had all kinds of crap happen with employee's and my Wife is always complaining to me---so I stoped complaining.

    I am more "zen" now in my approach.
    1. Keep my hiring ad out all the time 24/7
    2. Interview once a week or as needed. You can tell if a current employee is not working out and they need to be replaced
    3."do not be held hostage by employee's" They get a 3 strikes your out rule. I dont care if they are all knowing or awesome. You cant change their personality
    4. This will always happen in our industry we have a low skill industry and you have to face those facts.
    5. Not one employee cares about your business or work ethic like you do--get over it. all they care about is themselves.
    6. Nothing of what I said should be taken personally or viewed as an attack. Just a few observations from the constant mind numbing experince of employee hiring and retention.
  3. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    I think with unemployment being so high for so long that a lot of people have settled into not working.

    Last year I put an ad up and had 80+ emails in one day. Still didnt find a single American that I was able to hire and have show up. But at least the apparent interest was there.

    This year, I put up ads and get a couple responses here and there.

    It just doesnt add up. To have millions of people unemployed and Im trying to fill 8 positions, paying above industry standard, and I cant fill one.

    A lot of my friends that are business owners in different industries are having the same problem. A problem that none of us had back when the economy was good and unemployment was low.

    Thats what I cant figure out. How on one end you have the highest number of people out of work in decades, and on the other end, businesses that are going nuts because they cant fill job positions.

    When I was in NY. Good employees stayed with me forever. When someone got hired on, they didnt leave. I had people with me 10+ years and a waiting list for when I had an opening. I have a system in place that a good performing employee can make serious money, and have a great job, in an industry that is otherwise filled with low paid grunts.

    But now that Im in Tennessee its a totally different ballgame.

    My dad thought I was exxagerating about this. He just came on after he retired from his job as an employer for 50 years.

    He didnt believe that:

    Ill get 5 emails about the job.
    Ill call 4 of the 5 back. And MAYBE, one will answer the phone. Most go to voicemail and NOT ONE OF THE 4 WILL CALL ME BACK.

    I will set up interviews and if I set up 5 interviews a half hour apart. 5 OUT OF 5 WILL NOT SHOW UP FOR THE INTERVIEW.

    I will get a couple interviews where people show up. Out of that, I get one or two people that seem great. Theyre excited and ready to roll.

    I tell them start Monday at 8. NOT ONE WILL SHOW UP OR CALL.

    My father thought I was making it up. "Ive been hiring people for 50 years, that just doesnt happen"

    So I said "Ok Mr 50 year employer. You put together a crew for me"

    By day two hes calling me saying "I CANT EFFIN BELIEVE IT. IVE SAT HERE FOR 4 HOURS AND 6 PEOPLE ARE NO SHOWS"

    Then he called me pretty excited the next day. "JOE I GOT YOU TWO MEN, YOURE GOING TO LIKE THESE GUYS"

    I called them both. Seemed great. Told them where to be this Tuesday. NEITHER ONE OF THEM SHOWED OR CALLED.

    This is just beyond comprehension.
  4. zimmatic

    zimmatic LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 416

    I may try this,

    Place an ad on CL and list starting pay at 30-40/hr and list a whole set of requirments and see what happens.
    A proving grounds of sorts to find out what works and doesnt when placing an employment ad.
  5. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,552

    Just this week alone Ive hired 3. One worked 2 days, two no shows. The employee who WAS working for me decided that it was time to make his play for more money as I was having difficulty getting someone else. Keep in mind this is the guy I have to show the same things to over and over, and he still misses things. When I am not looking, he skips things. when told to pull weeds, he leaves a garbage can full where he thinks I won't check.

    He said he wanted more money. I told him when he can do the job without me having to hold his hand, it wouldn't be a problem. He said he wanted it right away and he would work harder. OOOOOhhhhh he shouldn't have told me that. That isn't how it works. You work hard for me, I pay you more.

    He thought that since I needed him and didn't have anyone else, I would cave in. He thought wrong. I told him that if he needed more money, he should start looking for another job. I didn't fire him, but told him to start looking elsewhere if he needed more.

    He grabbed his stuff and said he was leaving if I didn't.....I said...

    See Ya.

    Ive called 5 others with no call backs. since Thursday.

    Ive called everyone who applied. Like Procut said...Last year, I would get 50 to 60 replies. This year, maybe 6 so far in a month. This is with an ad on all the time. I actually have 3 ads running.

    Got another scheduled to start Monday morning....lets see how that works out. Im trying to get a second one to start Monday too.
  6. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    I cant figure it out. Its driving me nuts. I have 2 HUGE apartment complexes to sealcoat starting in one week and need 8 people in a hurry.

    Ill be spending the day in the Mexican neighborhood. I cant wait any longer.
  7. wbw

    wbw LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,072

    The only thing limiting my business growth is that I cannot find more good reliable help. I pay above the industry average and I am a good guy to work for.

    It would seem that I am not alone. Everywhere I go I see "Help Wanted" signs. I mean I see them all day long. People don't feel the need to work if they deem the work beneath them.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  8. grass-scapes

    grass-scapes LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,552

    Or if they are paid to stay home.......
  9. PROCUT1

    PROCUT1 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from TN
    Messages: 4,891

    I think a lot of people have been unemployed for so long they stopped looking.
  10. rywnygc

    rywnygc LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 523

    I hired a guy and he's been on for 3 days now. I am just waiting for him to quit. He has no experience and he's a bit...overweight. I had to go behind him and trim a few things today, but that is expected with a guy who hasn't run a professional weed whip before. I just have a feeling that right now he is ok, but when it's 90+ degrees, he will jump off the boat. Right now, I just have to figure out how to make him faster.

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