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    Workstream | 4 min read

    4 Traits to Look For in an Hourly Worker

    We live in a digital age, which means that most people turn to the internet when it is time to find a job. Gone are the days of picking up a Sunday newspaper at the corner grocery store to search through the local classified ads for job openings. Now, job postings are available at the touch of a button, with up to 86% of candidates with a smartphone using it as the foundational tool for a job search. 

    Not only are candidates looking online, but companies are facing the challenges of competing for the top talent in the industry. It doesn't matter if you are hiring a high-level manager or an entry-level hourly worker; you need to be sure that you are leveraging the internet to connect with the potential employees who are a good fit for your company. 

    Are you making a move to implement a new online recruiting campaign, or wanting to improve the strategies that are already in place? You can save time and money by using the techniques that are working in the current industry. Here are a few tips to help you get started: 

    1. Capacities 

    The most basic and arguably most important factor of hiring an hourly worker is their capacity to handle the job they are applying for. It's important that you, the hiring agent, identify the capacities required to fill the job opening you are hiring for. 

    This way you will have a clearer idea of who you are looking for and people who recognize that they lack the capacities to fill the role simply won't apply (in most cases, of course). 

    We can split these capacities into two groups: 

    a) Mental – Mental capacities for a job are those that are required of the employee to fulfill their daily duties. This involves taking written or oral instructions, preparing reports and records, analyzing any aspect of a product, equipment, and workmanship to find flaws, interpret logs, schedules or graphs, etc. It's a good idea to identify the learning and active thinking that is required to fill your job vacancy. 

    b) Physical – The physical capacities required to fill the hourly position are a lot easier to identify. You simply pinpoint the movements and physical predispositions required to complete daily tasks. 

    It's also important to factor in the weight of items the employee is going to handle, the amount of time they'll spend doing it, as well as auditory capabilities needed to perform well and keep themselves safe and healthy. 

    2. Attitude 

    The wrong attitude can simply be defined as an unwillingness to do a particular job, despite having all the predispositions to do it properly. It's a lot easier to train an employee who is enthusiastic about the work than to correct the bad attitude of a proficient one. 

    This is a serious matter for a number of reasons. The primary one being that bad attitude ticks off customers. Customer satisfaction is the primary concern of any company. If people who represent the company in one-on-one situations with customers are not interested in providing a good service, things are going to go south very fast. 

    Here is a short list of positive things to look for in an hourly employee when it comes to attitude: 

    • loyalty
    • honesty
    • team spirit
    • problem-solving
    • reliability 

    These are by no means the only things that define a positive attitude but you'll need to identify those needed for your particular situation. 

    3. Personality 

    This is one of the trickiest traits to align with the rest of the company. The goal is to align the personality of each hire with that of the company, the personality required to do the job properly and that of your managers. 

    The more realistic approach is to attempt to make hires that are close to ideal and not strive only for perfection. 

    Keep in mind that 60% of our personality is derived from our genetic traits and that most of it is embedded by the age of nine. This means that there is very little room for changing an employee's personality to fit the job. 

    A better angle to look at the situation is to find people who are willing to manage their personality to align it to the job requirements. 

    4. Skills 

    With the right capacities and attitude, any skill can be trained. Still, in many cases the window for hiring isn't open for very long and the HR professionals are forced to make decisions fast. 

    Furthermore, some companies rarely go into hiring a new employee with the desire to train them for the work they need to do. If this is the case, then testing for required skills is your top priority. 

    Fortunately, testing those skills is usually fairly straightforward. If you are hiring somebody to fill the position for, let's say a bartender, you will need very little time to determine if a potential employee has the necessary skills to handle that job. 

    One day of testing should be enough, naturally supervised by someone who has experience with the position and can differentiate between a skilled worker and a novice. 

    We hope these tips have helped you with your hiring process and provided you with the necessary insights to make good choices. Of course, intuition and experience play a significant role as well but only when paired with the traits mentioned above. Good luck! 

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