Employees have a huge impact on the success of a small business, particularly in businesses with only a handful of employees. In small-employment firm, every employee needs to be an A player for the company to meet its goals with its limited human resources.
It’s a lot easier to hire the right employees than identify and fire the wrong employees later on, so your employment screening process is important. While in most cases there isn’t one clear alarm that may signal that a job candidate is a potentially bad fit for your organization, there are several clues when taken together can signal that you may want to consider someone else for the job.
The following are a list of red flags you should be on the lookout for when screening prospective employees:
1. Incomplete or sloppy resume – A bad resume is a reflection on the candidate’s ability to organize information and attention to detail. If a prospective employee does a poor job of representing himself or herself, how well will he or she represent you?
2. Misrepresentation – If you catch a potential employee in one fib, can you guess how many you didn’t catch? For your business to be successful, you need employees who you can trust. By avoiding hiring dishonest employees, you can ward off a lot of trouble later.
3. Lack of references – A lack of credible references on a resume shows that your potential employee may have left a former employer on bad terms. This shouldn’t be an automatic disqualifier, but if your potential employee has a lack of references or only references from friends or co-workers, you may need to do some further research before making a hiring decision.
4. Inability to completely answer questions – If an employee can’t answer job specific questions that you ask based on what they’ve put on their resume, chances are they may have embellished their actual work experience or education on the resume. You may want to think twice before hiring.
5. Reluctance by former employers to give references – Legal concerns frequently prevent employers from giving their workers poor references, but if employers completely decline to say anything about employees, it may be a telling sign.
6. Poor punctuality – If a prospective employee doesn’t show up for a job interview on time, it’s highly likely he or she won’t show up for the job on time either. Not a big deal in a non-time intensive business, but in other businesses where schedule is king, punctuality is important.
7. Overqualified candidates – If your candidate is overqualified for the work, he or she may not stick around long, as its likely they’re only taking your job as a place holder until they can find something they’re better suited for. While this may be fine for some business owners, it may be troublesome for employers who need workers for the long haul.
8. Your gut. If you get a bad feeling about an employee, you may want to dig a little deeper before you hire him or her, or avoid hiring him or her altogether. In interpersonal relationships such as the employer/employee relationship, feelings and intuition play strong roles. If someone rubs you the wrong way after a 15 minute interview, consider how you’ll feel after spending 15 months with them.