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When you need to hire new people for your business, you want to make sure you get the right person. Employees can make or break a company, so you need to make sure that you use your hiring process to find a great fit for the position. Here are a few things that you can do to help you narrow down your applicants.

Know What You Need

This may seem obvious, but if you aren’t clear on what you need, you may end up with a great employee who just doesn’t quite fit what you need for the position. It won’t be because they aren’t awesome, it will be because you didn’t understand what you were looking for. If you are replacing someone who is leaving your company, you need someone to fill that role. If you are hiring for a new position, take some time to come up with a complete description of what they will be doing. Then you can use that to create the criteria for employment.

Read the Resume

You don’t have time to read every single resume, and you probably don’t need to. But if you are calling someone up for an interview, you need to read their resume beforehand. Obviously, they are qualified enough that you want to know more, but you can use the resume to shape your questions and the direction of the interview. You can also look for discrepancies between what they wrote and what they are saying. These are all great things, but it only works if you read the resume.

Look into Your Candidates

In addition to interviewing your candidates, you should make sure that they are who they say they are and that they can be counted on. Depending on what kind of business you run and what position you are looking to fill, there are a variety of things you can do. You can ask for references from previous employers or contact their university or college. You may want to consider asking for a drug test to make sure there won’t be any problems. Just be careful not to overstep legal bounds when doing your research.

Give Them a Trial Run

Once you know who you want to hire, give them a trial run. Some companies call it probation, some call it training, others call it a trial, but it gives you a good sense of how they are going to fit in and whether this is the right hire. Most trial runs last 2-3 months and involve a mixture of training and the actual work for that position. During this time, the person is still paid and is a full employee, but they may not receive all the benefits that they normally would. Most of the time, this process confirms your decision and allows the person you hired to ramp up to full performance, but it also gives you a little wiggle room, just in case things turned out differently than you thought they would.

Hiring good employees is a vital part of your business, so take the time to make sure you do this properly. Finding the right person isn’t always easy, and it can take a long time, but in the end, your business will be better off for it.