How to Avoid Hiring Nuts, Lemons and Layabouts


How to Avoid Hiring Nuts, Lemons and Layabouts


An estimated 30% of "blue collar" employees, and 10% of others, leave within the first four weeks of employment. And, guess what? They’re not the nuts, lemons and layabouts. Yet, both the early leavers and the nuts, lemons and layabouts are major components of the same problem – poor staff selection.

Estimated Costs Of Recruiting An Executive – $15,000 to $80,000

Note this well: The costs of staff replacement are enormous and not readily understood by managers. Recent studies indicate that it costs between $15,000 – $80,000 to recruit somebody for an executive position.

The tangible costs include:

  • Advertising
  • Time involved in interviewing
  • Credit and reference checks
  • Agency fees
  • Psychological tests and various other means of determining the ability of the candidates
  • Telephone calls and paper work
  • Relocation costs, etc.

There are also some significant intangible costs to be borne in mind, including:

  • Internal disruption to the usual work routine
  • Reduced efficiency and productivity while the gap exists
  • Possibility of a decline in product and service standards
  • Possibility of a loss of sales and customer goodwill

And then there are the potential "dirty costs" of hiring nuts, lemons and layabouts:

  • Industrial disputation
  • Legal costs
  • Claims for unfair dismissal
  • Plus stress, worry, emotional trauma, and misdirected focus. etc., etc.

These costs can be substantially reduced by better recruitment/selection techniques at the job interview.

The Key Aspects Of Staff Recruitment – In A Nut Shell

Much has been written on this subject, and just about all of it says the same thing – nothing new ever arises. Let’s get back to basics by following these simple points:

  • Define the job in writing by giving specific details of the functions to be performed, the approximate time each function takes, the qualifications and experience required, etc. A sample of a typical Job Specification Form is included later in this section.
  • Analyse the various advertising media to determine the most likely to attract the ideal applicant.
  • Check and re-check your advertisement to ensure it is crystal clear about the person you are seeking. Remember anti-discrimination legislation when wording the advertisement.
  • Use standard application forms to ensure that all detail obtained from applicants are comparable.
  • Pre-plan the interview by framing relevant questions to ask the applicant.
  • Always check references to determine the personality, experience and ability of the applicant.
  • Credit checks and criminal checks may also be useful.
  • Insist on submitting the applicant to a practical test. If they say they can type a standard business letter at 100wpm, or drive a bobcat in a confined space, make them prove it.
  • Upon completion of the interview, attempt to analyse the applicants’ suitability by using standard review forms (so that a uniform approach can be adopted when reviewing all of the job applicants).

Once all applicants have been reviewed and the decision made, it is good business practice to advise the successful applicant in writing, setting out clearly the terms and conditions of the employment offer. At the same time, letters should be sent to the unsuccessful applicants thanking them for their time and effort. This does the goodwill of the business no harm.

 Establishing the Need

First up, let’s ask the most important question:

 Do you really need to create that new job or fill the vacancy?

Don’t make the mistake of creating new jobs as a "knee jerk" reaction to a temporary overload problem. Think the matter through carefully and ask your fellow workers for their thoughts.

about TA fastrack

TA Fastrack is Australia’s leading travel, tourism and hospitality industry business improvement and marketing solutions provider. TA Fastrack offers a range of specialised services including management consulting, business coaching, a full-service marketing and PR agency as well as training services.  With a vision to provide companies the ‘world’s best practices’ in the industry, TA Fastrack guarantees a fastrack in your profits and personal performance. With Australasia’s most experienced team based in Australia, New Zealand and now in Singapore, we can deliver business solutions wherever you are.

To learn more visit or call +61 7 3040 3588.
Source = TA Fastrack
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