A Diamond in the Rough: Tips for Hiring Great Technicians
“I am convinced that nothing we do is more important than hiring and developing people. At the end of the day you bet on people, not on strategies.”
Lawrence Bossidy, Former COO of GE and author
It’s no secret that finding and hiring good people is one of the most challenging, yet crucially important tasks of running a business. In the fast lube industry, the task of hiring technicians is even more daunting because you are looking for would-be top performers to fill what is usually an entry-level position. However, by taking a proactive approach and fine-tuning your hiring process, you can find people who will help build the long-term success of your company.
The Job Description
The first step you should take in filling any open position in your business is to develop a comprehensive and concise job description. Start by talking to the high performers who already work for you in technician positions. They can help you identify what skills and personality characteristics have helped them succeed in their roles as technicians.
Jennetta Hyatt, CEO at Hyatt Associates, a full-service human resource management agency, shared her insight on the importance of the job description.
“The job description will be one of the candidate’s first encounters with your open position,” Hyatt said. “If the job description does not make it clear to the applicant what the technician job will entail, it will also be unclear what is expected of him or her in terms of work performance and skills.
“Later on, the supervisor can also use the job description as a tool for evaluating the employee’s work performance and timelines as well as for assisting the employee in setting personal goals.”
Now that you have a clear definition of what the job will involve, you have to take on the challenge of deciding where to find potential technician candidates.
Tim Holt, district manager of Avis Lube in Midland, Texas, faces the difficult process of trying to hire in a local market with a very low unemployment rate.
“We try to cover all of our bases when looking for new technicians,” Holt said. “We do classified ads in the newspaper, place online ads and even host hiring events onsite with a huge tent, music and a local car club show. At the end of the day, we typically end up having our best luck with online ads.”
Today fast lube operators have access to a variety of options when it comes to advertising job openings for technicians. From specialized sites like iHireAutomotiveProfessionals.com, to NeedTechs.com, to JustForMechanics.com, operators have the ability to streamline their hiring processes like never before.
“Utilizing a specialized job search website will save time and headaches for fast lube operators,” said Heather Gonzales, senior account manager at iHire, LLC. “On general employment websites you might spend hours sorting through numerous candidates that don’t come close to qualifying for your position just to find one or two good candidates. A specialized site takes out some of the guesswork.”
Employers can use these specialized websites to post their open positions, request resumes from applicants or even searcha database of candidates from within the automotive industry that are looking for new employment.