Five Steps to Recruiting and Retaining High-Quality Maintenance and Reliability Professionals

By Joel Crawford posted 09-12-2018 12:05 PM


The number one tip for companies to recruit quality professionals is to create a sense of ownership for the employee around their position. Here are five key steps to recruiting quality employees.

  1. Referrals and word-of-mouth branding:  Focus on referrals and build a network hierarchy.
  2. The interview and onboarding process:  Put yourself in their shoes. Set and confirm the process so you can gauge their level of interest.
  3. Continuing education and tracking new hires: Ensure that the core skill set aligns with the company’s goals. Set realistic key performance indicators (KPIs) and have a review after 90 days.
  4. Keeping and training your new workforce: Build a culture of ownership and avoid a closed-door culture. Employees stay with companies for the following reasons:
    • Flexibility
    • Acknowledgment
    • Health and Safety
    • Growth
    • Culture
  5. Creating a culture of accountability and unity: Ensure that employees understand their impact on the results and the company’s people, processes, and technology. Have brief but consistent team meetings.

Mistakes to Avoid

Factors like shifting generations, technology and the fast marketplace can have a critical effect on the education and performance of employees. Here are some of the most common mistakes companies can make.

  1. Companies believe they can find quality people. Companies need a disciplined and aggressive step-by-step process for finding candidates, engaging candidates and presenting candidates.
  2. It’s not all about money. Companies often forget what candidates really want. Money is not really what people are looking for when they are in the job market, and it’s not why they leave jobs.
  3. Neglecting to clearly layout the steps of the process. It can take 45 days from the first interview to final offer for a skilled-trade position – a candidate should be aware of each step and know what’s next. This will keep them engaged and prevent them from possibly taking another position because of the lack of communication.
  4. Miscommunication about important details. Create a checklist to ensure critical elements of the job are discussed at the right time.

Landing the Right Candidates and Keeping Them

Finding the right candidate, landing them and keeping them are crucial in the competitive job market. This can happen with some simple tips:

  • Be inspirational
  • Build a culture of adaptability
  • Be investment focused
  • Think long-term

Accomplishing this requires a solid procedure that is clear to all stakeholders. I recommend looking at a high-quality candidate’s profile and finding a fit for them within the organization rather than fully focusing on the current job description. Focus more on the person than the open jobs.

Secondly, be transparent and set expectations. Candidates should be prepared and have something to refer to as they go through the process. This will keep them engaged. Companies are increasing their talent pool, and the landscape is highly competitive. Setting expectations can make or break the engagement of the candidate. What a candidate experiences during the process will build their opinion of that company.

Ultimately, the workforce today has different expectations than other generations. When quality candidates are exploring opportunities, they are looking for companies who are investing in their employees. Companies that don’t have something laid out for them at the beginning, will have struggle to retain those employees.