Hiring Practices

A man in an office discussing hiring myths

Busting Common Hiring Myths

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Hiring is hard. From sorting through piles of resumes to choosing between two candidates, hiring the right person for your business can be difficult. What hinders the hiring process even more is the myths surrounding hiring standards. When people fall into these myths, it can harm their hiring process. This leads to a smaller applicant pool, increased employee turnover, and other factors that can negatively impact your hiring process and workforce. Let’s explore the most common hiring myths and learn what’s true.


The right candidates will come to you.

Hiring managers often believe that if you put the job ad out there, the applicants will come. However, that is simply not true! Getting the right applicants to apply for your job openings takes time and effort. This includes posting to multiple job boards, actively responding to applicants, and re-engaging past candidates.


The hiring process is fair.

Most hiring personnel believe they make the right hires based on their past experience and gut feeling. However, this does not equate to a fair hiring process. Most people have bias in the hiring process, even if it’s subliminal. The use of pre-hire assessments in the hiring process can reduce this bias by being the first step in the screening process. 


Hiring managers know how to interview.

Business owners may assume that their hiring managers know how to interview. However, most managers do not have adequate training to conduct productive, effective interviews. Consider setting aside time to train your hiring managers in hiring best practices, like these.


You should only recruit applicants when you need more help.

Most people only put job postings out when they are actively hiring. However, you never know when a great applicant will come along. Leaving your job posting up as a strategy to build your talent pool is an effective strategy to increase applicants when job openings come up.


Reference checks are a waste of time.

Conducting reference checks are one of the most overlooked parts of the hiring process. It’s simply a myth that reference checks are a waste of time. Reference checks are a good indicator on whether an applicant has people who will vouch for them. While hiring managers think that anyone who is put as a reference will have great things to say, that’s not always the case. References can be truthful on their opinion on your applicant and give insight into their strengths and weaknesses.


In conclusion, hiring myths are hindering hiring processes across the country. By debunking these myths, you can improve your applicant pool, make better hires, and increase employee retention. If you’re ready to improve your hiring process, Sprockets’ hiring solution can help. Contact us to learn more. 

Two women in an interview for cashiers

Interview Questions for Cashiers & Front of House Staff

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When hiring cashiers and front of house staff for your business, it’s important to hire the right people the first time around. To hire the right people, it’s important to ask the right interview questions for cashiers and front of house staff members. Because these staff members interact with your customers on a daily basis, it’s critical to hire people who will represent your business in a positive way. Additionally, it’s important to hire people who will stick around, be a good culture fit with your business, and be dedicated to the mission. 

Being prepared with consistent interview questions is key to making the right hire. When hiring cashiers and front of house staff members, you should ask questions in the following categories; experience verification, behavioral, and competency questions. Additionally, you should supplement with any questions relevant to the position, such as requirements specific to your business to be employed.

If you’re looking for additional data on who to hire, learn how Sprockets’ hiring solution can help you determine which applicants are the best fit for your business. Click here to learn more.


Experience Verification

Experience verification is important in positions where certain certifications, training, or degrees are required.

Q: Describe your cash-handling experience.

Asking this question paired with a basic math test is a great way to evaluate if the applicant is competent/can be trained to responsibly handle money.

Q: What customer-facing experience do you have?

Asking this question helps you gauge the experience level of the applicant, which can influence confidence in doing the job and expected pay.


Behavioral Questions

Behavioral questions are designed to evaluate an applicant’s fit with the role and duties it entails.

Q: If you have a long line of customers and limited help, what would you do?

This question should be posed to give insight on temperament and quick-thinking, whether they would feel overwhelmed or be able to perform the job effectively.

Q: Describe a situation when you had to deal with an upset customer/person. What did you do to resolve the situation?

An applicant’s answer to this question will give you insight into their temperament and patience. Their answer lets you know if they are willing to problem solve and stay calm in unpleasant situations.


Competency Questions

Competency questions are designed to evaluate an applicant’s understanding of the position and the duties it entails.

Q: If you receive a $20 bill for a purchase totaling $5.55, what change would you provide?
Q: If a customer has a bill of $74.64 and they pay $22 of it with cash, how much should their debit/credit card be charged?


In addition to the key questions listed above, it’s good to gain a sense of culture fit for your organization. Questions to probe at this include, “Where do you see yourself in three years?”, “What do you hope to get out of working with us?” and more.

It’s also important to weigh which category of questions is most important for that position. For example, when hiring for a cashier, the behavioral question category is most important. This means this category of questions should be weighted the most heavily,  as on-the-job training can be completed. When we hire people, so often do we say, “I feel like they’d be great for the job.” We base decisions on how we feel about someone, because it is important. 

Overall, it’s crucial to hire the best people for the sake of your business and your customers. Make the best hires for your business by being prepared with the relevant interview questions for cashiers detailed above. If you’re ready to take your hiring to the next level, learn how Sprockets can help you select the best hires, reduce employee turnover, and save you money.


Suggested for you: Phone Interview Questions and Best Practices

People in a group interview

How to Host a Group Interview

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Group interviews are common in businesses that require a streamlined hiring process. Conducting group interviews is a good way to quickly assess multiple candidates while saving the headache of coordinating schedules with everyone involved. Before moving forward with group interviews, it’s important to have a structured process to ease the process for applicants and interviewers alike. 

Group Interview Structure

Group interviews can be structured in a variety of ways. Some businesses choose to keep candidates together during the entire interview session, while others choose to separate candidates during portions. 

Before the group interview, be sure to set the stage for candidates. It’s important to inform candidates of the interview structure so they can be prepared. Below is a common group interview structure.


Stage 1: Group Information Session

The first stage of a group interview should set the tone for the session. You should give background information about the company and position that the interview pertains to. In addition, this is a good time to sell candidates on your business. They aren’t the only ones who have someone to impress during the interview. Candidates will want to hear why your business is better than your competitor down the street. 

After selling candidates on your business, outline your objectives. Let them know how many people you are hiring, if it’s an immediate start date, and what you want to see from them during the interview.


Stage 2: Group Discussion

Following the information session, keep everyone in the same room to ask questions regarding the position and company. The questions you get are likely to be repeated by multiple candidates. Common questions to expect are “What is the workday like?”,
“Is scheduling flexible?”, “What’s the pay scale?”, and “What are the opportunities for advancement ?”. 

During this stage, it’s important to keep track of which candidates speak up. Those who ask questions are generally more interested in the position. Be sure to pay close attention to these candidates.


Stage 3: Team Scenarios

After discussing the company and position, move into team scenarios. This is a good time to evaluate how the candidates interact with each other and in on-the-job scenarios. An easy and effective strategy is to prepare a list of questions and ask candidates to choose how they would answer. For example, if the question is, “A customer has come up to the counter and ordered a burger and fries. Do you A) accept the order and move on or B) try and upsell the order to add a drink or shake?” After asking the question, ask candidates to move to the side of the room that best represents which answer they would choose. Once applicants are in each group, pick an applicant from each side to explain why they chose it.  

Team scenarios should be planned around common issues that arise in your business. They should not revolve around controversial topics or irrelevant scenarios.


Stage 4: Individual Interviews

After moving through a few team scenarios, you can move to individual interviews. You will want to pull each candidate into a separate space for this stage of the interview process. Remember, because you may have nine other candidates waiting, it’s good to keep these short and sweet. Simply focus on a few main questions and gauge their interest level.


Stage 5: Thank Candidates for Coming

Once individual interviews are complete, be sure to formally conclude the session. You’ll want to thank candidates for coming and participating. It’s also important to conclude with when selected candidates will be contacted, whether that is the same day or later in the week. 

Overall, hosting group interviews can be a great way to save time in your hiring process while effectively filling open positions. Before you decide on the group interview route, be sure your team is prepared to create a structured plan that everyone is informed of. 

Another great way to streamline your hiring process and identify great candidates is with our hiring solution for franchises. Our hiring solution matches applicants against your best employees, instantly showing you who’s a great match. Get more information by reaching out to us today.


Recommended for you: 10 Interview Questions to Assess Soft Skills

A man on the phone conducting reference checks

The Basics of Conducting Reference Checks

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Conducting reference checks is applicable whether you are hiring for frontline, managerial, or keyholder positions within your business. Taking the time to conduct reference checks may add an extra step up front, but can save you major headaches down the line. Participating in this hiring step gives you an extra data point on each applicant, including whether they were truthful on their application and how they conduct themselves as an employee.

When you’ve decided you’re going to include reference checks as part of your hiring process, create a standard process. You don’t want to conduct a reference check on every single applicant you get. We recommend conducting reference checks after you’ve conducted in-person interviews and decided which applicants you’re interested in. You should standardize how you ask applicants for references and how you reach out to those references. We recommend asking applicants to supply you with their references after a satisfactory in-person interview. Creating a standard template asking for this information helps streamline your hiring process, which we’ve outlined below.


Email Template to Request References

[Applicant Name],
Thank you for meeting with us today. We enjoyed speaking with you and were impressed by your experience and excitement. As we would like to move you forward in our hiring process, please supply us with three professional references, including name, company, email, and phone number.

[Hiring Manager Signature]


After you have received the references’ information back from your candidates, it’s time to reach out. Avenues for conducting reference checks include phone calls, emails, and automated surveys. No matter the communication channel you choose, the questions and objectives remain the same. You want to ask questions that dive into how that applicant is as an employee to properly gauge whether they are the right fit for your company – and if they were truthful on their application. Our favorite question, outlined below, is “would you hire them again?”. This really dives into what that reference thinks of them. If they would re-hire them, that’s a great sign. If they are hesitant, be sure to ask why. Someone who wouldn’t commit to rehiring your applicant shouldn’t necessarily rule them out. They may have been not the best fit for that exact position or that company culture.


Questions to Ask During Reference Checks

-When was the person employed?
-What was your relationship to the applicant?
-What was [applicant name]’s job title and responsibilities?
-Can you describe a project you worked on with [applicant name]?
-Would you hire them again?


If you ask these questions over the phone, be sure to pick up on tone. If they say they did a good job on projects, do you sense hesitation? Are they holding back information? Be sure to ask whether there is anything else they would like to add regarding the relevant applicant.

Overall, conducting reference checks should be a staple in your hiring process for frontline employees, keyholders, and managerial staff. Reference checks provide insight into an applicant’s work history, work ethic, and how they are perceived by others in the workplace.
Taking the time may cost you time upfront, but they can save you time and money that bad hires cost your business.

How to Stop Your Hiring Managers (And Yourself) From Breaking Common HR Laws

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The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is responsible for setting guidelines for legal hiring practices. However, thousands of employers break these legal guidelines each year in their hiring process. When a case is brought to the EEOC, it can majorly cost your business. In fact, one Chicago restaurant operator agreed to pay $1.9 million to settle a race discrimination lawsuit filed by the EEOC for allegedly refusing to hire African-American applicants because of their race (QSR Web).

You may not think this could happen in your business, but take a step back and think about how much of the hiring process you control. Do you know the language that is written in your job descriptions? The process your managers use to determine who to interview, or the interview questions asked? All of these steps in the hiring process expose your business to legal risks.

In fact, some seemingly common interview questions are in fact illegal to ask during interviews. This is because seemingly innocent questions can infringe upon a person’s protected status. See below for a few illegal interview questions. Please note that this is not a comprehensive list.


1. When did you graduate high school/college?

This question is illegal because it can be used to calculate a person’s age. Similarly, you cannot blatantly ask an applicant’s age during the hiring process. Applicants over age 40 are classified as protected by age discrimination law.

For roles with a minimum age requirement, such as a bar, asking an applicant’s age and proof is acceptable.


2. Are you married?

Asking if someone is married may seem harmless, but select employers use this as a way to discriminate against those who may be starting a family and carry extra insurance dependents. This question may be illegal during the hiring process, but it can be asked after they’re hired.


3. Do you have children?

Applicants with children can be discriminated against due to the added insurance cost, employees taking time off to care for sick children, and other reasons. This question should be avoided during the hiring and interview process until an offer is extended. If an applicant reveals this information without being prompted, you must not use it as a decision making factor.

While this is not a comprehensive list of restrictions during the hiring process, one can see that there is a fine line in the hiring process. This is why using data to drive hiring decisions reduces an organization’s exposure to litigation.


So, the question becomes, “How can I reduce my risk of hiring-related lawsuits?”


1. Proper training for hiring managers

It’s important to have a formal training session with any management personnel that is involved in the hiring process. This may include creating and training them on a set hiring process that should be followed. From training them on phone interview best practices to which interview questions are illegal, be sure to include this all in the training. 


2. Deploying technology like Sprockets that’s approved and unbiased

Sprockets is an AI-powered, data-driven hiring solution for businesses. Sprockets’ hiring solution can be used for all positions and by anyone conducting the hiring process. From the owner to GM, Sprockets is easily used by all to make great hiring decisions. 

Sprockets is compliant with the EEOC, DOL, and The Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP). Deploying Sprockets reduces an organization’s exposure to potential litigation. 


3. Hold regular meetings updating managers with changing human resource regulations and laws

Regulations and laws pertaining to human resources are often updated or new legislation is put into effect. It’s important to stay aware of these changes and update your hiring personnel on relevant changes.  To stay up-to-date on employment laws and regulations, we recommend this weekly newsletter from SHRM


You work hard to build your business. Don’t let common hiring mistakes be the difference between success and failure.
Someone on a phone texting applicants

Why You Should Be Texting Applicants

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When you have an open position become available, most people want to get it filled ASAP. Open positions mean your business may be understaffed, paying overtime to remaining employees, and lost productivity. But, hiring through traditional means can take time. In fact, it takes over 20 days, on average, to hire a new employee. However, with the evolution of technology comes new solutions for this problem that so many business owners face. One new tool that is featured in many job boards and Applicant Tracking Systems is simple but effective. Texting. While this may not seem like a new advancement, utilizing texting to interact with applicants is a relatively new feature. Let’s dive into why you should be texting applicants to speed up your hiring process and be competitive.


Texting is Faster Than Other Communication Channels

How often do you check your email? How many spam messages are there? Chances are you only check a few times a day and that includes deleting irrelevant emails. This is where texting is a faster course of communication than email or phone calls. Text messages are less likely to get buried and get checked much more often. In fact, a recent study showed that “it takes the average person 90 minutes to respond to an email and only 90 seconds to respond to a text message” (ctia.org). By cutting down your time to interact with applicants, you can speed up your hiring process and stay competitive in getting top talent for your business.

You Can Reach Candidates Whenever

While you may not have the time to jump on a call with a candidate every time you are interested, sending off a text message can happen practically any time of the day. In addition, if you see someone apply at 8 a.m., it may be too early for a phone call. But, it isn’t too early to send a text message. By utilizing texting as part of your applicant communication strategy, it extends the hours of communication so you can actively keep candidates engaged.


It Promotes a Closer Relationship

Using texting as a communication channel can promote a closer relationship with candidates. While the messages you send should still be professional, they can be more relaxed than a typical email with a greeting and signature line. Having a sense of a closer relationship during the hiring process can invite applicants to be more candid during their application process. This may include being more upfront on if they are interested or not, or inviting them to ask any questions about the position. 


Tips to Keep in Mind When Implementing Texting Applicants

Before you move forward with utilizing texting as part of your applicant communication plan, it’s important to keep in mind a few guidelines for it to be an effective channel. You should also keep in mind that texting applicants should be done from a job board or ATS, not from an individual’s number.


  • Give Candidates a Chance to Opt-In

Because texting is a relatively new way to communicate during the hiring process, it’s important to give candidates the chance to opt-in. Most job boards allow employers to ask pre-employment questions as part of the application. You can create a question that asks their preferred method of communication; phone call, email, or text. Based on a candidate’s preference, you’ll increase your likelihood of getting in touch.


  • Introduce Yourself

While your text messages to applicants are coming from your job board or ATS, it is still important to introduce who the message is coming from. This may be generic such as “Hi, this is [Company Name] of [Location]. Thank you for applying to [Position Name].” Or, your introduction could be more personalized from whoever conducts the hiring process. An example of this may include, “Hi, this is [Hiring Manager Name] and I’m the [Position Name] at [Company] of [Location]. Thank you for applying to [Position Name].” By introducing yourself/your company through text message it sets the stage for why you are reaching out and reminds them that they applied to your position.


  • Remain Professional

Even though you are communicating in a generally relaxed channel, it is important to stay professional in your word choice. While you may be inclined to use emojis and gifs — stay away. We recommend sticking to the same type of language you’d use in emails to applicants.

Overall, texting applicants is a great way to quickly and effectively reach applicants to fill open positions.

A woman on a phone interview at a cafe

Phone Interview Questions and Best Practices

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Conducting phone interviews with your applicants is a key step in the hiring process. Adding this step allows hiring managers to gauge an applicant’s probability of success within the company before moving forward with in-person interviews.

Throughout the hiring process, from emailing applicants to phone interview questions to offer letters, consistency is key. The best way to create consistency in your hiring process is by creating standards and templates for your most common steps. it streamlines your work and creates a more subjective process. 

If you want to streamline your hiring process and reduce bias in a more effective manner, learn how our Applicant Matching System can help. Click here to learn more

The first step in conducting phone interviews is to identify which applicants pass your hard screen. Hard screens may include the following; shift availability, minimum age requirements, reliable transportation, and more. Once you’ve decided who passes your hard screen, reach out to these candidates via email to set up a phone screen. We’ve outlined a great template for you to use or modify below.


Phone Interview Email Template


Thank you for applying for our [position name] opening at [company name]. You have been selected to move to the next stage of our hiring process! As part of the next stage, we conduct 15-minute phone interviews. Please reply with 3 days/times that work best for you this upcoming week. 


[Hiring Manager Name]

[Company Name]


Once you have scheduled the phone interview, it’s time to make the call! Before jumping into questioning, take the time to introduce yourself and the company. You’ll want to detail your position, how long you’ve been with the company, and why it’s a good place to work.

After going through introductions, move into your prepared list of phone interview questions. Remember, it’s important to use the same standard questions for each phone interview you do. We’ve outlined popular questions for phone interviews relevant to the hourly workforce. 


Phone Interview Questions

  • Tell me why you’re interested in this position.

    The applicants’ answer to this question will give you insight into whether they are applying for every single thing on the market or if they are truly interested in your company. In addition, their answers will tell you whether they have done any research on your company, also indicating interest level.

  • Tell me about your relevant work history.

    Whether your position is an entry-level position or above, asking about relevant work history is important. However, if it is an entry-level position, this question can also be applied to volunteer positions or school activities. You’ll want to learn whether they have done this type of work in the past or what transferable hard and soft skills would make them successful in the position.

  • What type of work/activities do you enjoy most? Least?

    It’s important to find out what type of work they’ve enjoyed in the past and compare that to what you know of the position for which they’re being considered. Do they enjoy a fast-paced environment? Does that match the position and company culture?

  • What’s the hourly wage range you would consider to accept this position?

    When you have a wage range based on shift or experience level posted with the job, it’s important to see if their expectations match. If you can only pay up to $13/hour but they won’t accept a position for less than $15/hour, they’re not going to be worth moving forward with.

  • Which shifts do you want to work?

    If your company has multiple shifts, find out which hours the candidate prefers to work. In addition, record how many hours per week they prefer to work. By setting these expectations clear from the beginning and sticking to them, it leads to more satisfied and engaged employees.


At the end of the phone interview, end with an actionable step. If you are interested in the candidate, schedule their in-person interview. If you are unsure or not interested in a candidate after hearing their responses, let them know you are continuing to do interviews and you will follow up via email. Once you’ve finished doing all of your phone interviews, you can revisit those you were unsure about and decide to bring them in or nicely reject them. For those you are definitely not interested in hiring at this time, follow up with a thoughtful email.

A thoughtful rejection email includes thanking an applicant for taking the time to apply and letting them know you’ve selected another applicant but would encourage them to re-apply in the future. It’s important to maintain positive correspondence with applicants. You want to offer a positive response because they may be a good fit for your business in 3, 6, or 12 months.

Overall, phone interviews are a great way to vet candidates without adding the resources it takes for in-person interviews. Using standard processes in your hiring process can help streamline your hiring and reduce unconscious bias. If you’re looking for a better way to hire,  check out Sprockets’ Applicant Matching System. The solution matches applicants against your top employees, instantly showing you who to interview and hire. Click here to learn more.

People in a group interview

FAQs on Conducting Group Interviews

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Group Interview Basics

Group interviews are a great way to streamline hiring processes while effectively analyzing candidates. Although not as common as one-on-one or panel interviews, they do have a place in the hiring process. Get to know the basics to determine if they are a good fit for your business.


What is a Group Interview?

Group interviews can often be confused with panel interviews. A group interview is when there are multiple applicants interviewing at the same time with personnel from the business that is hiring. In opposition, a panel interview is when there is one applicant being interviewed by multiple people from the business that is hiring.

When Should You Choose Group Interviews?

Interviewing in a group setting can be intimidating to candidates and they are not always the best choice for businesses seeking to hire great candidates. They should be chosen when time is of the essence, when you are seeking to hire multiple people for the same position, or when you have very similar applicants. 

When you have a group of similar applicants, such as entry-level or those with no prior experience, it can be beneficial to conduct group interviews. This type of interview is advantageous in this scenario because you can easily compare how each candidate does in each workplace scenario in real time. 


Who Should be Included in Group Interviews?

Those who conduct group interviews are typically the position manager and a member of HR. However, it can also be beneficial to include an employee who is currently in the position that is posted. The employee(s) currently in the position can speak to the candidates regarding their favorite part of the job, what a typical day is like, and can be the benchmark during scenario questions.

It’s important to note that once you’ve determined who should be included in the interview to prepare them. Discuss what the interview structure will entail, what parts they may be responsible for conducting, and detail the objectives of the interviews. 


What Questions Should Be Asked?

Questions asked should be personalized enough that one candidate’s response cannot influence another’s. One common questions include, “Tell me about an experience that lends itself to this position’s responsibilities”. Another question may be, “What’s a recent project that you’re proud of?”.

How Many Candidates Is Too Many for a Group Interview?

While group interviews are a great way to assess many applicants at once, you should set a limit. We recommend not having more than 10 candidates in one interview. This allows those involved to accurately assess and spend enough time with each applicant while maximizing time.

Overall, group interviews are a great strategy for businesses who do a  high volume of hiring for entry-level employees. This type of interview strategy allows business managers to effectively evaluate each candidate while minimizing the overall time spent on hiring. In addition, they allow a business to hire multiple people at once, further streamlining the hiring, onboarding, and training processes. 

Ready to make your next hire? Learn how Sprockets can help you streamline your process further. Our Applicant Matching System compares applicants against your best employees, instantly showing you who’s a good match for your business. Learn more by emailing info@sprockets.ai today.


Looking to use group interviews for seasonal hiring? Check out this recommended blog on tips for hiring seasonal employees.

A woman on a laptop hiring season staff for 2020

How You Can Prepare Now for Hiring Seasonal Staff in 2020

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Thousands of seasonal staff members are hired each year during the holidays. These seasonal employees may be at a business for just two weeks or up to two months. No matter the length of employment, some of these employees will be identified as great workers. In order to keep having great seasonal workers, take time at the end of this holiday season to prepare. Let’s review what you can do now to prepare your business for 2020 holiday hiring.


1. Identify Which Workers You Want to Return

As you monitor your seasonal staff members throughout the holidays, take notes. Are they consistently punctual? Do they help customers with a positive attitude? Have you received any complaints about them? When thinking of which seasonal employees you’d like to return, remember that you should make it known before they leave! 


2. Make a List of Who’s Interested in Returning

Once you’ve identified which seasonal employees you’d like to return for seasonal employment, reach out to them. It’s important to interact with the seasonal employees you would like to return next year. Let them know that you appreciate their good work this year and would like to know if they have an interest in returning. If they say yes, keep a list of their contact information so you can easily alert them of the job opening when it becomes available. 

When you identify seasonal employees that you’d like to have return, consider who you would bring on in a more permanent manner. If you had a rockstar seasonal employee, ask if they’d be interested in a part or full-time position if one becomes available. By staying in touch with your seasonal employees it helps fill your talent pool when other open positions arise.


3. Conduct Exit Interviews

At the end of the holiday season, be sure to conduct exit interviews (or online surveys) with all seasonal employees. This exit interview should help you understand how to attract and retain other employees in the future. The following questions are a good benchmark of where to start. 

  • How did you hear about this job opening?
  • Why were you interested in this job?
  • What was your favorite part of the job?
  • Was there anything you wish you could change about the position you were in?
  • Any feedback you have for management?
  • Are you interested in returning next year?

The answers to these questions should give you the information you need to make informed hiring decisions. If the majority of people heard about the job opening through a social media post, try sponsoring posts next year to reach more people. When candidates tell you what they liked most about the job, be sure to emphasize and include that information in the job description! It’s important to keep in mind that getting information is only helpful if you decide to take action based on it.

Before the end of the 2019 holiday season, you can set your business up for success in 2020 with these suggestions. If you’re ready to drastically improve your hiring process in 2020, learn how Sprockets’ hiring solution can help you hire better matches and reduce employee turnover. Contact us to learn more.


Recommended for you:  How to Create Effective Hiring Materials

Applicant Sourcing: Re-Engage Past Talent Pool

Applicant Sourcing: Re-Engage Past Talent Pool 150 150 Sprockets

Sourcing applicants when you have a job opening can seem like a big hurdle. However, by using multiple tactics to bring in applicants, you increase your likelihood of not only expanding your applicant pool, but finding the perfect person for your business. One commonly overlooked tactic is re-engaging your past applicant pool. For example, if you have had the same job opening posted for over one year, what are the chances that you missed a great applicant when you only hired one person at a time? Either you had to reject the runner-up at the time or an applicant didn’t have the experience you wanted or their initial interview simply didn’t go well. These factors do not mean these are not still good applicants now.  Learn why it is worth it to give this pool of applicants another chance. 


Why to Re-Engage Past Applicants

The Hiring Process is Faster

Your past applicant pool is just sitting in your job board or ATS. That means you do not have to wait for new applicants to come in when you post a job. By reaching out to past applicants with an initial email and follow-up phone call to those who respond, you drastically cut down your time to hire.


It Saves You Time and Money

How much does it cost you to post and sponsor a job opening on Indeed? How much time do you spend corresponding with all of the new applicants and sorting through them? Imagine getting to bypass that step by simply re-engaging past candidates – it does not cost you a thing! You have already spent the money to get them into your database, take advantage of it.



They are More Likely to Say Yes

Past applicants are more likely to say yes to a job with your company than the potential applicants you are trying to recruit. They are familiar with your business and have already shown you that they are interested in a job with your business.



Passive Recruits are Overlooked

Many hiring managers are skeptical of re-engaging with past applicants, thinking they already have a new job and could not possibly still be looking. However, the majority of the hourly workforce is open to or seeking a second job! While they may not be looking for as many hours as if working for your business was their main job, they may still be interested in working a few extra hours per week.



How to Re-Engage Past Applicants

In order to be in a good place to re-engage your past applicant pool, it is important to have the procedures in place that will make these applicants want to re-engage with you. This comes with treating all applicants the same during the application process – even if they are rejected. Let’s take a look into what that means.


Be Respectful

While you are sifting through applicants as they come in, it is important to treat them all with respect. How upset do you get when a candidate simply ghosts you by not responding or is a no-show to an interview? Candidates that have put in the time to fill out your application can feel the same way when they apply to a job and never get any type of response. 

It is important to keep in contact with candidates, whether it’s letting them know that you have already selected another applicant, inviting someone for an interview, or that you want to hire them. For all of the applicants that you reject, it is important to let them know that you appreciate them taking the time to apply and that you will keep their application on file for future openings. This is an important message to keep in mind because even if they are not currently a good match for your business, they might be in the future.



Be Honest

If someone doesn’t have the qualifications or experience needed at the point in time in which they originally applied, be honest with them. Let them know what you are seeking in a candidate and encourage them to reapply if their situation changes. 


Contacting Past Applicants

Once you have decided to re-engage past applicants it is important to get your messaging right. They may have forgotten they once applied at your business or may be confused by an out-of-the-blue message. Include these basics when writing to re-engage past applicants or simply modify our template below.

  • Establish the business name and location
  • Name the open position(s)
  • Remind them they once applied
  • Clearly state why you are reaching out
Subject Line: Job Opening at [Business Name]

Hi [ First Name],

Thank you for taking the time to apply at [Business Name] of [Location]. We are once again hiring for [position name(s) and thought you might be interested. As a reminder, the [business hours/shift times] are [list business hours/common shifts available]. 

If you are still interested, simply respond to this email with three times you are available for a phone call.

Have a great day and I hope to hear from you soon.


[Hiring Manager/Business Owner Name]


Sprockets for Sourcing

If you have decided to move forward with re-engaging your past applicants, congratulations! It is a great idea to look back into your past applicants to find the hidden gems. While this does still take some time and effort, utilizing Sprockets can help! Sprockets’ easy-to-read applicant scoring shows you which applicants are a good match for your business based on how they compare to your best employees. All of this is done with a mobile-friendly, short survey that can be included in emails to applicants. Learn more about Sprockets’ hiring solution for franchisees.