5 Tips To Get More Bang For Your Contractor Buck
When it comes to hiring a contractor, time is money and you’re paying by the hour
In the nearly 3 years I have specialised in placing contractors into some of Auckland’s top businesses I’ve been observing those companies who get the most out of their contract resource versus those who don’t.
These are the 5 things that successful hiring managers do to get the most out of their contractors:
1. MAKE THEM PART OF THE TEAM
You might be thinking that hiring a contractor means you need to place them in a corner to just get on with it. But as the saying goes: Nobody puts baby in a corner.
Everyone likes to feel a part of something, so the little things you do to make them feel welcome will make a big difference to how productive and motivated they are.
Make sure you do things like introduce them to the team, show them where to get tea and coffee and if appropriate, invite them to team meetings. The longer a contractor is on board for, the more you should treat them like another member of the team (eg. if you’ve had a contractor on board for 10 months, they probably should get a Christmas party invite).
2. PUT MORE TIME IN AT THE START
You need to get your contractor up to speed as quickly as possible. Commit some time to showing them what you want them to achieve and in what sort of timeframe.
If you’re employing someone to help while another staff member is on extended leave, have enough time for a proper handover between these two employees. That will make the transition process much smoother and give you more comfort that the role is being done well.
3. DON’T GIVE THEM WORK THAT REQUIRES WEEKS OF TRAINING OR A MASSIVE HAND-OVER
When taking over from one of your permanent employees a handover is generally a necessity. Otherwise, the best use of contract resource is work that they can pick up really quickly and get on with on their own, and show results in a timely fashion.
4. MAKE SURE YOU FIND THE RIGHT PERSON
With a real skill shortage in Auckland for top talent, hiring managers need to have slick processes to ensure that they get the best person, ESPECIALLY, when hiring contractors.
The best contractors in the market will not be around for long and often go with the company who can move the quickest. To get the best person for the immediate cover there should be a separate set of expectations in terms of the skills required than when looking at employing someone permanently.
For example, if your accountant has resigned and you have year end coming up you may need to hire someone more experienced on a contract basis who knows what they are doing and can hit the ground running even though a permanent position may be better suited to an assistant accountant who can be mentored and trained up.
By moving quickly with a contractor it buys you time to find the perfect permanent person who ticks all the boxes. The companies who hire the best contractors move quickly and don’t have extensive hiring processes. You should be placing your reliance on a good agency to provide you with the best talent available. (Currently, we have clients who are placing advance orders on contractors (ie they know they will need an Accountant in 6 weeks, so they let us know so we can pre-book one of our best people for them).
5. DO IT RIGHT
With the changes in employment law around zero hour contracts in 2016, hiring managers should be aware of what contractors are and aren’t eligible for. Always check with the agency what type of employee the temp or contractor is and ensure all three parties involved are clear in the beginning about entitlements. This will save you a whole lot of hassle further down the track.
When you need a great contractor, you want to be speaking with someone with extensive specialist experience and great relationships with the best contractors in town!