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After a short while of running your business all by yourself, it’s necessary to bring in new and energetic staff. Staffing is one the most important decisions to be made by an entrepreneur. Hiring competent and needed staff is required for business growth and sustainability. New hires often bring in fresh energy, innovative ideas and strategies that helps in increasing the bottom line.
As exhilarating as it seems, it’s a challenging task especially for new entrepreneurs. It’s one of the most challenging decisions you will have to make in your entrepreneurial pursuit. The choices made in hiring will determine the success or failure of the business. Listed below are some professional informed choices for a robust and effective hiring process.

Define your corporate structure

There must be an established corporate structure for your business. System defines stability in corporate enterprise. What are the goals of your business? What challenges are there in your business to be solved?

Answers like “financial/book-keeping challenges” will necessitate the need for an accountant or a book-keeper. Sales/marketing challenge would call for a sales staff. Your answers to these questions will help you develope a system for operations.

Define the role for the job.

Conduct a thorough job analysis on the task that you are hiring for. The various activities needed to achieve the task must be acknowledged and fully documented. This will serve as a guideline for measuring the competence of all applicants. Defining the role helps the organization with information that facilitate in the recruitment of the most competent hands and also reduce recruitment cost. The analysis helps you to know:
 •Why does the job exist?
 •What physical and mental activities does the worker undertake?
 •When is the job to be performed?
 •Where is the job to be performed?
 •How does the worker do the job?
 •What qualifications are needed to perform the job?

An example of Job description is as follows:

The roles of a Sales Executives are: listening to customer requirements and presenting appropriately to make a sale; maintaining and developing relationships with existing customers in person and via telephone calls and emails; cold calling to arrange meetings with potential customers to prospect for new business; responding to incoming email and phone enquiries; acting as a contact between a company and its existing and potential markets; negotiating the terms of an agreement and closing sales; gathering market and customer information; representing their company at trade exhibitions, events and demonstrations; negotiating on price, costs, delivery and specifications with buyers and managers; challenging any objections with a view to getting the customer to buy; advising on forthcoming product developments and discussing special promotions; creating detailed proposal documents, often as part of a formal bidding process which is largely dictated by the prospective customer; liaising with suppliers to check the progress of existing orders; checking the quantities of goods on display and in stock; recording sales and order information and sending copies to the sales office, or entering figures into a computer system; reviewing your own sales performance, aiming to meet or exceed targets; gaining a clear understanding of customers’ businesses and requirements; making accurate, rapid cost calculations and providing customers with quotations; feeding future buying trends back to employers; attending team meeting and sharing best practice with colleagues.

Define the profile of the needed person.

With a detailed understanding of the job role, it become easy to profile the required person for the job. The profiling entails the Knowledge, Skills and attitudes necessary for the job.
According to the Oxford Dictionaries:
Knowledge: “Facts, information, and skills acquired through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject.”
Skill: “The ability to do something well; expertise”
Ability: “Possession of the means or skill to do something”
Other characteristics: “Personality variables, interests, training, and experiences”

Throw your adverts out…use a cost-effective advertising platform.

Advertise. Get the word out in the labour market. You can go cheap, but effective. Considering the challenge in finance for small start-up’s, i would recommend you use cheap but very effective online platforms. You don’t have to engage a recruitment firm, due to financial constraints. Use the social media like the faceboook, linkedin, etc. They offer free posting and a global reach. Be precise. Below is an example:

Sales officers based in Lagos. 

Salary : Approx N40,000/pm to N50,000/pm based on experience. [Incentives & Transport will be paid additionally]

KRA of a Sales Executive
A Sales executive has to take ownership of the area of operations defined for him by the ASM. It can cover multiple markets, a region & van sales

 Sales Executive KRAs are:
 1. Setting quarterly targets for each product with the ASM.
 2. Meeting quarterly targets & ensuring a strong plan is in place.
 3. Improving the number of distributors/subs in rural towns
 4. Knowing each sub-distributor (mapping)
 5. Managing the teams – ensuring reports reach in time.
 6. Planning PJP for the vans with the ASM – ensuring van reports reach in time.
 7. Planning & Execution of marketing activities
 8. Ensuring number of Key distributors are increased 
9. Initiatives for improved operations.
 10. Team Management: Ensuring that each sales member has his TARGET & Incentive plan for each quarter approved before start of that quarter. The Core KRA is to ensure that sales target for that particular area is met.

 please email cv’s on

Utilize the selection process thoroughly.

When the resumes are in, take time to thoroughly walk through the selection process. This is the actually part of hiring where you engage first with the resumes of the applicants and then physically with the most suitable for the job.

 •Screen the received resumes.
 •Select the most suitable from the resumes.
 •Conduct a telephone call interview to further reduce the list.
 •Further assess the skills and personality traits of the applicants. Reduce the list further.
 •Conduct the 1st and 2nd interview.
 •Conduct a background check on the applicants, especially when finances are attached to the role.

Choose the most suitable & Induct properly.

Don’t allow personal bias get in the way of selecting the best candidate. Employ a competent stranger instead of an inefficient relative.
Induction is an official introduction of the new staff to the business. He gets to know other staffs, familiarize with the business goals and objectives, introduce to his/her job specifications and other business processes.
Mind you, the process on-going. The staff must be trained and re-trained to remain effect. Good remuneration and welfare packages must be provided. If you want the best, pay the best.

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