Employee Turnover

An applicant takes a pre-employment assessment

The Ultimate Guide to Pre-Employment Assessments

The Ultimate Guide to Pre-Employment Assessments 1016 528 Sprockets

What happens between the time a job seeker applies to your open position to the time they sit down for an interview? Sure, you might be reviewing their resume, skimming through their LinkedIn and maybe even Instagram, but how else are you learning more information about your candidate? 

In high turnover industries like hospitality, businesses can’t afford to waste time or money on candidates who won’t work out — that’s why some require pre-employment assessments before moving forward with their hiring process. Whether you currently use them or not, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about pre-employment assessments so you can determine the best recruitment strategy for your business and start hiring the best applicants every time. 

What Are Pre-Employment Assessments? 

Let’s start with the basics. Pre-employment assessments are tools used in the pre-screening step of the hiring process to predict an applicant’s likelihood of success. While there are several different types of tests, pre-employment assessments provide employers with details about their applicants to help them make smarter hiring decisions. It’s a sneak peek into how applicants will behave and perform in the workplace. 

Types of Pre-Employment Assessments

  • Job Knowledge Tests: Applicants are asked to demonstrate their expertise on processes they’ll encounter if they were to be hired.
  • Integrity Tests: These questions evaluate an applicant’s reliability and honesty. Candidates may also be required to pass a drug test.
  • Cognitive Ability Tests: The most common pre-employment assessment measures a candidate’s mental capacity to think through complex situations they may encounter at the workplace. 
  • Personality Tests: Analyzes personality traits to determine whether or not an applicant will fit in with the company culture and be an engaged, productive employee. 
  • Emotional Intelligence Tests: Gauges how a candidate builds relationships and resolves conflict, especially in high-pressure situations.
  • Skills Assessments Tests: Evaluates an applicant’s soft and hard skills.
  • Physical Ability Tests: Assesses a candidate’s physical strength such as lifting 50 lbs.

Are Pre-Employment Assessments Legal?

Yes, pre-employment assessments are legal on a federal, state, and local level in the United States as long as they are Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) compliant. There are a few laws in place to eliminate discrimination “against anyone on the basis of personal qualities that aren’t job-related”, including:

  • Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: Prohibits failure to hire an individual based on race, gender, color, religion, or national origin.
  • Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967: Illegal for employers to discriminate against people 40 and older. 
  • Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990: Employers cannot discriminate against anyone with any kind of disability.

It’s also important employers understand the validity of pre-employment assessments used in their hiring process. There are currently three primary forms of validity approved by the EEOC: 

  • Construct Validity: Whether a questionnaire measures what it claims to measure and in a way that is consistent with the definition of those dimensions. 
  • Criterion-Related Validity: Shows that the dimensions or scales are predictive of something tangible such as differences in scores on a scale related to work behavior or performance.
  • Content Validity: Demonstrates that the behaviors measured in the selection procedure are a representative sample of the behaviors of the job in question.

Pros and Cons of Pre-Employment Assessments

Pros:

  • Accelerates the Hiring Process: Employers are able to make smarter, more informed decisions about who they hire, therefore reducing costly employee turnover.
  • Increases Quality of Hires: When an applicant is willing to take a pre-employment assessment, it shows they are committed and are likely more interested in the position than an applicant who fails to complete a test. 
  • Provides Equal Opportunity: Every applicant will take the same pre-employment assessment ensuring a fair and honest process. 

Cons:

  • Partial Picture of the Candidate: Like resumes, some pre-employment assessments only provide a snapshot of an applicant’s character. It’s important to consider other factors and refrain from solely basing your decision to move an applicant forward in the hiring process based on these tests. 
  • Questionable Validity: Unfortunately, not all pre-employment assessments are accurate and truthful; some can have an adverse impact when used in the hiring process.

Are Pre-Employment Assessments Worth It If They Add Another Step to the Hiring Process?

The short answer is yes, pre-employment assessments help you narrow down which candidates you want to spend time interviewing. An extra few minutes of your candidate’s time could save you thousands of dollars, hours of time in your work day, and one heck of a hiring headache! 

Some pre-employment assessments like Sprockets’ solution eliminates the need for interviews. Our platform reveals which applicants share personality traits with a business’s current top performers based on their answers to a three-question survey that takes less than ten minutes to complete. Ultimately, it empowers owners and operators to build reliable, cohesive teams and reduce employee turnover. 

A person on their cell phone with text reading, "7 Tips for Providing a Mobile-Friendly Experience to Job Applicants"

7 Tips for Providing a Mobile-Friendly Experience to Job Applicants

7 Tips for Providing a Mobile-Friendly Experience to Job Applicants 1016 528 Sprockets

We use phones for so many things now that it’s hard to imagine life without them. If you can reach into your pocket and tap a few buttons to order food, pay bills, and even apply for a house, then shouldn’t the job application process be that simple as well? We believe it should be, which is why we created this guide on providing a mobile-friendly experience to job applicants. They’ll enjoy a streamlined process, and you’ll likely see better applicant flow since fewer people will drop off during the hiring process. Check out the tips below and learn how to solve more of your staffing challenges in our free guide, “Why Your Hiring Process Is Broken and How to Fix It.”

What Is Mobile Recruitment?

Simply put, the definition of mobile recruitment is to enable the hiring process through the use of mobile devices. This includes everything from attracting passive candidates to converting them into employees by means of mobile-friendly apps, job boards, and even texts.

Why You Need a Mobile Recruitment Strategy

Nobody wants to go through a long, tedious hiring process, especially people who are looking for entry-level positions in industries like food service and hospitality. It’s crucial to create a convenient candidate experience that includes mobile recruitment strategies if you want to achieve a steady applicant pool for your business.

Mobile Recruitment Statistics

Here are some quick numbers on the importance of mobile recruitment, just in case you aren’t convinced:

Mobile Recruitment Trends

You also don’t want to fall behind the mobile recruitment trends in your industry. This could result in job seekers choosing a competitor over you simply because the recruitment and application process was better.

One trend that should already be on your radar is that Gen Z is quickly becoming one of the biggest populations in today’s hourly workforce. Gen Zers grew up in a world of technology, and it’s safe to say that many of them expect a mobile-friendly application process. Tapping into this talent source could be the solution to some of your staffing frustrations. Chipotle realized this and started testing new ways to recruit Gen-Z employees, including a campaign with TikTok Resumes.

Learn more about how to attract and engage Gen Z workers:

Benefits of a Mobile-Friendly Hiring Experience

Some of you might be wondering, “Is building a mobile-friendly hiring process really worth the effort?” Absolutely — and you don’t always need to invest a large amount of time to create it. The list of benefits goes on and on, including:

  • Promote Diversity at Your Company: Michael Marlatt, the head of Cognizant Technology Solutions’ Talent Innovation Lab and founder of MREC, states, “Hispanics, African-Americans, and women are the heaviest users of mobile technology. So, when you think about diversity recruiting, mobile is key.”
  • Engage a Wider Pool of Candidates: Sure, you can put a “Now Hiring” sign in your window and cross your fingers, but why limit yourself with such outdated recruitment practices? Maximize your reach with mobile ads on job sites and apps.
  • Provide a Better Candidate Experience: You’ll improve the experience for applicants, and potentially increase the number of them you receive since a more mobile-friendly process could reduce the drop-off rate.

Mobile Recruitment Strategies to Implement in the Hourly Workforce

1. Optimize Your Careers Page

First of all, you need to optimize your careers page. We know that there may be limitations to what you’re able to do because of franchise restrictions or lack of experience editing websites, but do what you can. Ensure the job page design adapts to mobile from desktop properly and everything looks good on mobile devices, including phones and tablets. You can also include certain keywords on your careers page and meta tags for SEO.

Tip: Be sure to write “Careers” instead of “Jobs” on the page. More and more people are looking for meaningful careers with growth opportunities, even in the hourly workforce, and you don’t want anyone to think your opportunity would just be a dead-end job.

2. Use Mobile-Friendly Job Applications

Take a look at your application and ask yourself, “Would I want to fill this out?” If the answer is no, it’s time for a revamp. Simplify the questions you ask, and even consider asking fewer of them. Of course, make the application easy to complete on a cell phone as well. If you feel like you don’t have the time to complete the application or run into frustrating issues during the process, applicants will have the same bad experience and move on to the next job opportunity.

Tip: Remember to advertise this on job boards. Employers who advertise that their application process is mobile-friendly increase submissions by 11.6%, according to Glassdoor. 

3. Don’t Require Resumes or Cover Letters

Technology trumps tradition in the hiring process. In other words, you need to rethink the relevance of resumes, cover letters, and even reference checks. How much can these sources really tell you about candidates? One in three Americans admit to lying on their resume, and you wouldn’t gain many useful insights from the other two-thirds of the population. Resumes only give a surface-level view of an applicant, often without any mention of soft skills that might be more important for the position. 

Also, a cover letter might include some messaging about why they think they’d be a good fit, but that’s their opinion, and how many people stretch the truth on that as well? You’re much better off using an unbiased hiring solution, like the Sprockets platform that reveals which applicants share key personality traits for success with your current top performers. 

If you do decide to require resumes and cover letters, give applicants the ability to upload them via Dropbox and Google Drive. Also, ensure your ATS parses resumes quickly and accurately; it’s frustrating to have to input all the same information twice.

4. Attract Candidates via Social Media

What better way to conduct mobile recruitment than on the biggest platforms built for online communication? If you don’t currently have a presence on sites like Facebook and LinkedIn, it’s time to build a foundation so you can attract potential applicants. Create profiles with bios that promote your company culture and values, then begin posting regularly with engaging content. You could share team pictures, quick clips of what it’s like to work there, and quotes from current employees in addition to announcements about new job opportunities. 

Tip: Focus on the social media platforms that your ideal candidates use, keep their interests in mind when choosing content, and include relevant hashtags to expand your reach.

5. Use Mobile-Friendly Pre-Screening Software

Screening is an important part of the hiring process for employers to conduct some “quality assurance” and make sure a potential hire would really be the best fit for their business. However, don’t let that come at the expense of the candidate’s experience. Choose mobile recruiting tools and mobile screening technology that will be simple and painless for applicants to go through. For instance, Sprockets determines if someone is the ideal fit based on a brief, three-question survey that can be completed on their phone.

6. Allow Job Seekers to Apply via Text Message

We’ve seen a lot of businesses, especially in the fast food service industry, start posting flyers and signs that promote text-message applications. Certain Chick-fil-A locations have even added some branded flair to it by saying “Now Hiring: Text “My Pleasure” to [Number] for Info.” Consider doing something similar! You can also follow the example of Domino’s biggest franchisee who implemented text-message software with a chatbot that further streamlines the process.

7. Conduct Virtual Interviews

What’s more mobile-friendly than allowing people to interview for a job on their phone? The technology is here (abundantly), so you should take advantage of it. Not only is it convenient for all candidates in the hiring process, but it also widens your applicant pool to include people with hectic schedules who typically wouldn’t have been able to drive to your location for an in-person interview. 

Additional Resources for Hiring Hourly Employees

Check out these FREE guides to learn more about building the best hourly workforce for your business!

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Hiring Guide Mockup
Why Your Hiring Process Is Broken and How to Fix It

You already have the solution to your hiring challenges — it’s your top performers. Learn how to attract, hire, and retain the right workers for your business by leveraging the mental makeup of your best employees.

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4 Steps to reduce reliance on applicant flow mockup
4 Steps to Reduce Your Reliance on Applicant Flow

Hiring can feel impossible during a labor shortage, but these four simple steps will get you on the path to stable staffing levels. You’ll learn proven strategies for attracting and retaining high-quality employees for your business. It’s easier than you might think!

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Sprockets Tech E-Book
Must-Have Hiring Tech to Boost Employee Retention in 2022

Although the past few years have been challenging, some businesses found success by implementing more advanced technology. Avoid making the wrong hire – and costing your business valuable time – by implementing must-have hiring tools and watch your employee retention soar.

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The Essential Guide to Attracting Hourly Workers

The pandemic has changed the way hourly workers select opportunities, so you must transform your recruiting process to stay competitive and onboard the best workers. Let us do the heavy-lifting; access this free guide to build better teams and stabilize staffing levels.

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Guide to employee turnover
The Ultimate Guide to Employee Turnover

Dealing with employee turnover is expensive, time-consuming, and frustrating. Access this free e-book to discover proven strategies for retaining your best workers and even predicting which applicants are most likely to stay long-term.

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How to Craft Job Postings That Boost Applicant Flow

Sourcing is a constant battle in the hospitality industry. Looking to build the best team and recruit the top restaurant talent? Sprockets has you covered.

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How Personality Assessments Empower You to Hire Ideal Caregivers

Taking a scientific approach to caregiver hiring
is necessary to combat the issue of poor
performance and retention. Personality tests,
like Sprockets’ Applicant Matching System,
combine natural language and artificial
intelligence to predict an applicant’s likelihood
of success at a particular location.

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How to Make a Convenience Store Profitable

How to Make a Convenience Store Profitable 1016 528 Sprockets

Convenience store revenue totaled $663.5 billion and grew almost 25% in the last year, according to the 2022 Convenience Store News Industry Report. It seems like the industry is finally picking back up again and returning to pre-pandemic levels. Continue reading this blog to learn how to make your convenience store profitable and successful. We’ll even explain how one hiring software can help you stabilize staffing levels so you can allocate resources elsewhere. 

How to Make Your Convenience Store More Profitable

The average convenience store gross profit margin sits around $450,000. Keep in mind that this is just one location. Eventually, you’ll want to expand to multiple locations to maximize profits. Here are four ideas to help your c-store thrive in 2022. 

1. Increase Your Food Selection

One in four consumers stop at a c-store for lunch and 30% will purchase fast food items over refrigerated products. In fact, foodservice makes up 23% of c-store sales. No wonder convenience stores are now competing with quick-service restaurants. If you aren’t already doing so, think about adding more fresh food meal options. You could even have an associate greet customers at the front doors with samples!  

2. Up Your Prices on Popular In-Store Items 

This might feel strange — especially since gas prices are skyrocketing — but c-stores only make two cents to every gallon of gas sold! Consider increasing the price on in-store items, (especially food options). Don’t feel like you have to match price points with your local grocery store. Remember, customers are paying for the convenience of your goods, not just the products themselves. 

3. Understand Product Placement

You’ve probably heard the common saying “eye level is buy level”, but are you applying it to your c-store? Products that are placed at eye level are more likely to be selected and purchased by your customers. Why? Eye-level products have more visibility than those at your feet or knees. One study found that it only takes 8 seconds for a person to make a buying decision and if you think about it, it makes sense. A majority of c-store customers are traveling or on the go. They likely don’t have time to think too long about what snack or beverage they want. Consider placing your best-selling items at eye level to better catch your customers’ attention.

4. Drive Sales With the Best C-Store Employees

If you want to profit off of your convenience store, then you need to reduce costs where you can. One bad hire can cost $5,000, according to Cornell University’s Center for Hospitality Research. Avoid these expenses and end the cycle of costly employee turnover by hiring the right c-store associate every time with Sprockets’ solution. It reveals which applicants will succeed and stay long-term based on shared personality traits with a location’s current top performers. Ultimately, the platform empowers owners and operators to build reliable teams, reduce labor costs, and improve profit margins. It’s more accurate than other hiring solutions and even proven to increase employee retention by 43%, on average.

 

“If you’re on the fence, just the price should push you over because if it saves you one bad hire per year, you’re up money. That’s a no-brainer.”

– Curtis Wilhelmi, McDonald’s Franchise Operator

Happy c-store owner in front of her business

4 Reasons Why You Don’t Need Convenience Store Recruiters

4 Reasons Why You Don’t Need Convenience Store Recruiters 1016 528 Sprockets

It may be tempting to utilize convenience store recruiters and hire anyone that applies, especially when you have a shallow applicant pool. While that may seem like the best solution, that tactic will only propel you further into an endless cycle of costly employee turnover. See, you don’t need more applicants — you just need the right ones. 

Save your money and reduce your reliance on applicant flow. We’ll discuss how you can grab job seekers’ attention before your competitors, identify whether or not they are a good fit, and retain your high-quality hires long-term. 

The True Cost of Hiring the Wrong Employee

At a whopping 150%, c-store employee turnover is the highest it’s been since 2012! If you want to build reliable teams who will foster a happy, productive environment, then it’s crucial to hire the right people from the start. Quality over quantity is key since one poor hire can cost your c-store more than $5,000, according to Cornell’s Center for Hospitality Research. Luckily, this expense is easily avoidable if you know how to leverage the resources already at your disposal. 

Say Goodbye to Convenience Store Recruiters and Start…

1. Optimizing Job Postings

How can you make your job opening stand out amongst millions? Put yourself in your applicants’ shoes. Be specific, clear, and concise. Postings with 300 words or less get more applicants, according to LinkedIn. An effective job posting includes an accurate title, required skills, qualifications, company’s culture, mission, core values, and salary details. In fact, 67% of job seekers are more likely to apply for a position when a salary is included. Remember, the quality of your job posting will attract similar quality applicants.

Tip: Get hours back in your day by posting to multiple job boards at once with Sprockets!

2. Hiring for Coachability 

Sometimes, the best hires are the ones who don’t have direct industry experience. You can easily train someone to operate a cash register or prepare food, but you cannot teach them soft skills like coachability. Ask specific questions during the interview process to gauge an applicant’s soft skills. For example, you might ask “Explain a time when you failed to meet expectations. How did you persevere?” to understand how they receive feedback. It’s better to hire for attitude and train for skills. 

3. Maintaining Employee Engagement

C-stores with engaged employees are 22% more profitable than those with unengaged associates. Despite this not-so-shocking fact, 66% of workers aren’t fully engaged at their workplace, leading to a reduction in productivity and employee retention. Ensure your c-store associates feel appreciated (and engaged!) by conducting team-building exercises. Simple games like two truths and a lie instills trust and camaraderie amongst your associates. Plus, having a friend at work is proven to increase employee engagement. 

4. Predicting Applicant Success 

Top brands trust Sprockets’ solution to help them hire and retain the best applicants every time. The platform is proven to boost employee retention by an average of 43%. There’s no need for c-store recruiters because our simple one through ten scoring system (ten being the perfect fit) makes it easy to see who will succeed and stay long-term. Sprockets’ users even spend 37% less time on the hiring process, empowering them to focus on daily operations.

“I’m able to be selective instead of just taking anybody that applies.”

– Sprockets Customer

The Sprockets Team with Customer Success Lead

Sprockets Expands Leadership Team to Rapidly Transform a Broken Hiring Process

Sprockets Expands Leadership Team to Rapidly Transform a Broken Hiring Process 1016 528 Sprockets

The current hiring process is broken; our mission at Sprockets is to transform it into an equitable one for all. After our series A funding, we immediately began expanding our teams to make that vision a reality for even more businesses in the hourly workforce. We followed our own advice and used both internal and external recruitment methods: one individual was promoted internally, while another new hire was made through an employee referral. Both external hires received a high Sprockets fit score which made the decision a no-brainer. 

The Sprockets platform is the easy, effortless way to hire and retain high-quality individuals. Our hiring solution analyzes applicants’ answers to three simple survey questions to determine whether or not they will succeed and stay long-term like your current top performers. It’s proven to dramatically reduce costly employee turnover and eliminates the need for resumes and even interviews. 

Meet Our New Sprockstar Leadership Team

So, without further adieu, here are the new members of our leadership team: Christian Palombo, Eric Lou, Katie Tumbleston, and Bailey Griffin. 

Christian Palombo, Chief Revenue Officer (CRO)

 

“With the right process, technology, enablement, and team, there will be no limit to our success at Sprockets.” 

Christian headshot

1. Tell us a little about your past experience. How did you get here? 

I have been fortunate to work with amazing people at hyper-growth startups in similar industries as Sprockets. My previous experiences at companies like Upserve and EverQuote allowed me to establish successful approaches to scaling SaaS B2B startups. When I spoke with Sprockets’ Chief Marketing Officer, Chad Troutman — who happens to be my former colleague at Upserve — I knew this was an opportunity that I could not pass up.

2. What drew you to Sprockets? 

I am passionate about solving challenges about the future of work. I believe that emerging technologies, advanced analytics, and workflow automation will change the experiences for both employees and customers. Sprockets applies these advanced applications today to directly address the labor crisis and support the largest class of employees in the United States: hourly workers. 

3. How will your role help our company grow? 

With the right process, technology, enablement, and team, there will be no limit to our success at Sprockets. I believe it is my responsibility to ensure Sprockets has the right blend of people, processes, and technology to solve problems for our customers and scale our business. 

4. What has been your favorite part of the role so far? 

My favorite part has been solving problems for our customers. Our customer base has been deeply impacted by the labor crisis and current market conditions. Working with customers to address uncontrollable employee turnover, shuttered business operations, and financial burdens has been extremely rewarding to me personally.

5. What would you say to potential job seekers considering applying to Sprockets? 

DO IT! There are very few professional opportunities in life where you can make a significant impact, grow personally and professionally, and help advance an industry. 

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Eric Liou, Chief Product Officer (CPO)

 

“The company has a great culture, filled with collaborative and passionate people who are all marching towards the same goal.”

1. Tell us a little about your past experience. How did you get here?  

I’ve spent over 20 years working in digital product strategy, design, and development at large companies as well as startups. I’ve helped three startups before, one of which was my own that I co-founded back in 2005. I’ve launched over 15 products in my career and have led product, design, and engineering teams.

2. What drew you to Sprockets?

The company mission and the potential of the product drew me to Sprockets. I find our mission a noble one — we are helping people maximize applicants’ potential by finding jobs that align with their skill sets and core values. At the same time, we’re helping companies hire better candidates and retain them for a longer period of time. We’re solving all of these key problems in an innovative way with a platform that leverages psychology and cutting-edge technology.

3. How will your role help our company grow? 

As Chief Product Officer, I’m primarily focused on setting a clear, compelling product vision and an effective strategy that will help us achieve that vision in the most effective way possible. Additionally, I’m here to create a great product culture that is driven by trust, autonomy, and delivers consistent product innovation for our customers and our business. Lastly, I’m tasked with building and scaling the organization across product management, design, and engineering.

4. What has been your favorite part of the role so far? 

My favorite part is discovering all the product opportunities at hand. There are so many avenues to take the platform on and so many problems to solve in the HR space, that I’m excited to strategize on how to best tackle them.

5. What would you say to potential job seekers considering applying to Sprockets?

The company has a great culture, filled with collaborative and passionate people who are all marching towards the same goal. Sprockets empowers you to bring your best self to work and trusts in you to make the right decisions. This type of environment breeds so much creativity and innovation that personally, it’s my ideal place to work. We are hiring across all functions within product management, design, and engineering. Feel free to reach out if you’d like to chat!

Bailey Griffin, Customer Success Team Lead

 

“We also use the power of Sprockets to help us hire.”

Baily headshot

1. Tell us a little about your past experience. How did you get here?

I was born and raised here in Charleston, so after studying in Clemson, I couldn’t help but come back and replant my roots here.

2. What drew you to Sprockets?

You hear it all the time, but I was truly looking for a company that had a culture that fit who I was and gave me the potential to get where I wanted to be. Lo and behold, I found the perfect place for that! I clicked with everyone in the company, which made the transition into my position smooth.

3. How will your role help our company grow?

I have had the opportunity to move throughout different departments here at Sprockets, so I have seen all sides of the business. Now that my feet are set in Customer Success, I truly can see where our customers’ pains lie and what they are looking for. Having the background knowledge of our customer’s pain points is invaluable, and I strive to utilize that knowledge to improve the CS team, the platform, and ultimately revamp our customers’ way of hiring.

4. What has been your favorite part of the role so far?

During my time here at Sprockets, the company and the product have changed immensely, but the core of Sprockets is still the same. I joined the team when there were only a handful of people in the room, naturally bonding us together to have strong relationships. Now, with over 50 people in the (virtual) room, you still get that tight-knit feeling.

5. What would you say to potential job seekers considering applying to Sprockets?

Take it from us, we know whether or not you are a good fit! Seriously, we also use the power of Sprockets to help us hire. So not only do we know if you would be a good fit, we also know which department will be the best fit for you. Come join us! 

Katie headshot

Katie Tumbleston, Talent Acquisition Manager 

 

“Much of my studies, passion, and career history is directly aligned to creating a just and equitable world.”

1. Tell us a little about your past experience. How did you get here?  

I have a varied background with titles ranging from Development Associate to Founder and CEO; however, I fell into recruiting and talent acquisition a little over five years ago. I refined and honed my skills in recruiting and hiring after launching an on-demand babysitting software business. Later, I expanded into medical recruiting in Australia and tech recruiting back in the States.

2. What drew you to Sprockets?

The potential for Sprockets to change the landscape of hiring was the initial draw. Much of my studies, passion, and career history is directly aligned to creating a just and equitable world for all walks of life. A close second was the opportunity to build a talent acquisition department from the ground up. This is an opportunity to have a large impact on a company, its culture, and ultimate success — I couldn’t pass that up!

3. How will your role help our company grow? 

We are doubling our headcount this year alone. Each and every role for which we are hiring is crucial to the immediate and long-term success of the company. 

4. What has been your favorite part of the role so far? 

Working with the hiring managers and learning more and more about their individual personalities has been my favorite part of my role. I’ve also thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to share our story and vision with prospective candidates and see their faces light up. It shows me that we have something really special to offer customers, job seekers, and our staff. 

5. What would you say to potential job seekers considering applying to Sprockets?

I would suggest taking some time to research our product, target market, and current employees via LinkedIn. Consider whether or not working within a startup environment is right for you. 

6. Do you have anything else you’d like to share? 

I’m thrilled to be on this journey with the Sprockets team and would be happy to talk to anyone interested in joining us!

Become Our Next Sprockstar

We’re hiring! Join us on our mission to create an equitable hiring process for all. Our organization is completely remote, but our team is stronger than ever. Why? We’re so confident in our solution that we even use it to hire our own employees. Plus, we organize quarterly company events at our home base in Charleston, South Carolina.

Sprockets Job Opportunities
A person stressed-out on a laptop and text reading "Why Is Hiring So Hard Right Now?"

Why Is Hiring So Hard Right Now?

Why Is Hiring So Hard Right Now? 1016 528 Sprockets

The hiring process can be one of the most stressful aspects of owning and operating a business. And that was true even before the COVID-19 pandemic and national labor shortage in the US. Today, companies are struggling so much to hire and retain employees that it might feel impossible to maintain stable staffing levels. Let’s discuss some of the pains you may be facing and offer proven solutions so that you never again have to ask, “Why is hiring so hard right now?”

Common Hiring Challenges and How to Overcome Them

“I Have No Applicants”

One of the most common complaints we hear from business owners about the hiring process is that they simply can’t get anyone to apply. And, with 11.5 million job openings in the US, it’s easy to see why some people feel that way. Job seekers have so many options right now, and the competition is fierce to grab their attention. While we believe this problem can be solved by increasing employee retention and hiring the right applicants from the start (even if you only have a few to choose from), we’re happy to provide some tips on how to increase applicant flow quickly.

Offering a competitive compensation package is one of the fastest ways to get more applicants, as long as you are able to do so. Just make sure you promote this clearly in your job postings. Too many people make the mistake of waiting until the interview to discuss pay. 

Patrick O’Rahilly, the founder of FactoryFix, shares his opinion on the matter: “I suggest complete transparency from the start. In fact, pay and salary rates should ideally be on the initial job posting. We’ve seen jobs that do not post a salary or pay rate receive only about half the applicants compared to jobs that do.” 

You can also widen your potential talent pool by considering more teenagers and entry-level workers as well as retired citizens who are looking to get back into the workforce. These groups of people can be some of the most eager to learn, adapt, and help your business grow.

“I Don’t Have Time for the Hiring Process”

Time is money, which makes the lengthy hiring process costly for individuals who normally need to focus on other tasks. For instance, the general manager of a fast-food restaurant that’s already understaffed might have to cover shifts for a cashier who called out or quit. So, they’re forced to operate a register and take customers’ orders rather than look through resumes and find someone for that role they so desperately need to fill.

However, let’s pause for a moment and rethink the idea of resumes. The tradition actually dates back over 500 years to when Leonardo DaVinci wrote a letter outlining his experience to earn patronage in 1482. Businesses can’t afford to rely on such outdated practices, especially during a labor crisis. It’s time-consuming, stressful, and ineffective.

Instead, streamline your hiring process with solutions like the Sprockets platform that shows you the best applicants without the need for resumes or interviews. Users spend 37% less time on the hiring process, on average. Think about how many hours that equates to in your work life and what a difference it could make to get those hours back!

“My Employees Keep Quitting”

Employee turnover is another major reason why hiring is so hard right now. According to ADP Research Institute’s People at Work 2022: A Global Workforce View, 7 in 10 workers have considered a major career change this year. Another study found that 55% of hiring managers said retention and turnover are the top issues hurting their ability to hire staff and grow their companies. (That means turnover ranked above hiring, in general, as their No. 1 struggle!)

We spoke with our very own talent acquisition manager, Katie Tumbleston, to get her thoughts on the employee retention challenges that businesses are facing right now: 

Katie Tumbleston“We are in the midst of real change when it comes to the dynamic between employers and employees. This change is and will continue to be uncomfortable for employers as they navigate how to best retain quality employees. They need to find answers and solutions for questions such as, ‘How much flexibility do we allow for start and finish times? Should we offer a four-day workweek? How much PTO do we encourage staff to take? How do we support both entry-level and more senior workers/staff in their growth? What perks and incentives can we provide to ensure our staff stay and continue to thrive with us?’” 

It can take some time to ponder these questions and discover what’s right for your particular business, but there are a few key points to remember. First, start focusing on improving employee retention, especially when it comes to keeping your best workers. Also, make sure you keep current employees engaged with team-building activities as well as growth opportunities. More and more people are searching for meaningful careers — not dead-end hourly jobs. You can provide this to your employees, even in the fast-food industry.

Make Hiring Less Stressful With Sprockets

The fastest, easiest way to solve all of these problems is with Sprockets’ hiring platform. It reveals which applicants will succeed like your current top performers, removing the guesswork and drastically reducing the time you need to spend on the hiring process. You can even get instant alerts when Sprockets finds your ideal applicant, then reach out to set up an interview or extend an offer in seconds. It’s trusted by top brands like Chick-fil-A and is proven to improve employee retention by 43%, on average.

Schedule your free demo of Sprockets today! It only takes 15 minutes to get started, and it will save you numerous hours in the long run.

A circle with personality traits and "9.1: Top Match"
Happy restaurant employee smiles behind the counter.

The Secret Recipe You Need to Boost Restaurant Employee Engagement

The Secret Recipe You Need to Boost Restaurant Employee Engagement 1016 528 Sprockets

It’s no secret that employee engagement and turnover in the restaurant industry is suffering. Labor crisis and pandemic aside, the industry often serves (see what we did there?) as a stepping stone. For many young people, working at a restaurant is their first job, so turnover is inevitable. However, there are plenty of individuals who serve in the industry because that’s where their passion lies. 

Continue reading to learn how to foster a positive work environment to promote higher restaurant employee engagement and retention. Plus, discover the secret ingredient that can replicate the success of your best employees. (Hint: These users see a 43% improvement in 90-day employee retention, on average.)

1. Offer Competitive Pay

If you want hourly workers to show loyalty and dedication to your company, then you need to pay them a tempting wage. Better pay will motivate your staff to consistently exceed expectations. If your staff doesn’t have to worry about making ends meet, they can focus on daily operations — like providing exceptional guest service. Plus, 67% of job seekers are more likely to apply to your restaurant if the wage is in the posting.

2. Prioritize Time Off 

Taking a mental health day is actually one of the best ways to reduce stress, decrease burnout, and recharge your mind for the work day. Encourage your employees to take time off when they need it — regardless of their reasoning. This will show them you care about their well-being and work-life balance. Bonus points if you pay attention to detail while building their schedules so everybody has a fair chance of getting a Friday or alternating weekend off. Your employees will thank you.

3. Give Consistent Feedback

Schedule regular check-ins and staff meetings to develop professional relationships and increase employee engagement. Praise them for their accomplishments and offer constructive criticism. This is also a good time to ask your workers for their thoughts on menu items, service ideas, customer feedback, and how they think your restaurant could improve. Sharing their opinions with you will make them feel valued, and restaurant staff engagement will naturally increase. 

4. Provide Training and Opportunity for Growth 

It’s crucial that restaurant workforce management offers opportunities for growth. For example, if you already have an all-star team that shows potential, consider hiring internally when positions become available. Not only will your employees appreciate the opportunity to interview before you find an external hire, but giving them a shot will instill trust amongst your team. 

Bonus Tip: Hire and Retain Restaurant Staff With Sprockets

What if you could predict which applicants are the right hire before the interview and without a resume? It’s possible with Sprockets. Our Applicant Matching System reveals which potential hires will succeed like your current top performers, empowering you to build passionate, driven teams. It’s proven to work and trusted by top brands like Burger King and Chick-fil-A to increase employee retention (a measurement of restaurant employee engagement!) by 43%.

 

Happy hotel employees

How to Create a Successful Employee Engagement Plan in Six Simple Steps

How to Create a Successful Employee Engagement Plan in Six Simple Steps 1016 528 Sprockets

Employee engagement is key to a thriving workplace. When team members are highly engaged, they’re more productive and creative. They take more ownership of their work and feel like they’re part of something larger than themselves. Whether you’re starting from scratch or simply want to refresh your memory on the basics, this blog outlines how to create an effective employee engagement plan in just six steps. 

Employee Engagement Strategy Plan

Step 1: Recruitment

Crafting an employee engagement action plan begins at the recruiting stage of the hiring process. This initial step will help you filter out unsuitable applicants and establish a happy, productive environment right from the get-go. You want to find people whose expectations match your company’s culture, mission, and values. Essentially, you want to replicate your top performers. Luckily, Sprockets’ AI-powered platform identifies which potential hires will succeed like your best employees, empowering you to build strong, engaged teams.

 

Step 2: Conduct Employee Surveys

To shape your employee engagement strategy plan, you need to understand what your employees are thinking. In fact, 89% of hiring professionals agree that ongoing employee feedback leads to success. Consider conducting employee surveys to get a sense of how your employees feel about their role and environment. Whether you decide to create a questionnaire or build a series of focus groups, it’s important your workers feel that their opinions truly matter. You may also find that asking your employees to provide anonymous feedback will help them feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and ideas. 

Step 3: Collaborate on Solutions

Collaborate with your team and analyze your employee engagement survey results to develop an action plan. Identify pain points and establish engagement goals. Take a look at other employee engagement action plan examples for inspiration — you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Remember, this level of collaboration is vital to employee engagement as it shows staff members that their voices are being heard.

Step 4: Establish Measurable Metrics

Metrics will help you track the progress — and see how you can improve — your employee engagement plan. The most common employee engagement metric is employee retention. Set S.M.A.R.T. goals to clearly monitor your team member engagement against measurable targets. 

Step 5: Provide Room for Growth and Development

Without progression, employees become bored and dissatisfied. They’ll feel like they aren’t moving forward in their careers and lives. Provide career pathways to show your employees you care. This will keep them motivated to consistently succeed and may even increase their contributions to your business.

Step 6: Measure Your Success

It’s crucial your employee engagement action plan is effective. Continue to track the metrics you established earlier to spot patterns and, ultimately, decide whether or not your plan is working. If you aren’t seeing the results you wanted, don’t be afraid to make changes. Engagement is a continuous process, so it’s important to be flexible and adapt as needed.

Boost Your Employee Engagement With Sprockets

Supercharge your employee engagement by making smarter hiring decisions with Sprockets. Our Applicant Matching System identifies what makes your best employees so successful, empowering you to predict applicant success. Trusted by top brands like Taco Bell and Wingstop, Sprockets users see a 43% improvement in employee retention. It’s easy to use and even integrates seamlessly with popular HR tools like TalentReef and McHire. We’re so confident in our hiring solution that we’re offering free, 15-minutes demos of our platform. 

 

Happy hotel employee making a bed

Everything You Need To Know About Measuring Employee Engagement

Everything You Need To Know About Measuring Employee Engagement 1016 528 Sprockets

Have you ever wondered, “How do I measure employee engagement?” If so, you’re not alone. Failure to measure engagement can reduce your employee retention rate and decrease the quality of work your team puts out. Understanding the different ways of measuring employee engagement will help ensure you maintain a positive atmosphere in your workplace.

But first, we’ll let you in on a little secret — maintaining employee engagement is one of the four steps to reducing your reliance on applicant flow. Check out our free guide to learn how you can start hiring the right people from the start.

 

How to Measure Employee Engagement

There are several ways to assess employee engagement, but we’ve narrowed it down to three of the best examples. 

1. Set Achievable Goals

You must first gain a deep understanding of company goals to engage staff (and ultimately measure that engagement). Consider keeping a list of qualitative and numerical goals for your staff to refer to as they complete their daily tasks. These will serve as a tangible representation for team members to grasp how close you are to achieving your company goals. Additionally, setting achievable goals helps your team feel that the work they’re doing is both seen and appreciated.

2. Employee Engagement Surveys

These surveys allow workers to voice their opinion on problems they’ve identified within the company. Your survey should feature simple, but concise questions that will help determine various employee engagement numbers that need improvement.

Here are a few useful questions to include on your survey:

  • Does your team motivate you to do your best work?
  • Does the company provide enough growth opportunities for you and your team members?
  • Do you feel your opinion is considered and taken into account when company decisions are made?

To ensure you’re making strides to create a workplace that’s effective for everyone — and simultaneously improving employee engagement — surveys should be deployed quarterly. The responses will help you create an employee engagement score formula that can be used to track progress.

3. Monitor Employee Retention

One of the best examples of employee engagement metrics is employee retention. As a business owner, you should work closely with HR to keep an eye on this metric. Implement strategies to retain high-quality team members and reduce the number of workers leaving your company. Staff that are engaged and happy with where they work will stay longer than ones who are disengaged.

Boost Employee Retention With Sprockets

Did you know that Sprockets users see a 43% improvement in employee retention, on average? It’s true – our Applicant Matching System reveals which potential hires will succeed like your top performers, empowering you to build strong, cohesive teams that will stay long-term. And the best part is that you can achieve similar results. We’re so confident in our hiring solution that we’re offering free, 15-minute demos to show how we can help you hire and retain the best workers every time.

 

A grocery store worker stocks shelves.

3 Benefits of Employee Engagement: The True Value of an Engaged Workforce

3 Benefits of Employee Engagement: The True Value of an Engaged Workforce 1016 528 Sprockets

Low employee engagement can easily make someone want to leave their current job. And, with people quitting their positions at an all-time high, it’s crucial your company takes the appropriate measures to increase employee engagement and retention. But, what are the other benefits of employee engagement? Continue reading to understand the true value of employee engagement.

Why Is Employee Engagement Important?

Employee engagement is one of the most important indicators of satisfaction in the workplace. It’s a key factor to the overall success of a company. Why? A study from Gallup found that businesses with highly engaged workers are 21% more profitable than those with little to no engagement. Engaged employees are more productive, less likely to look for a new job, and more likely to invest in the work that they do. Maintaining employee engagement is also one of the steps employers can follow to reduce their reliance on applicant flow and start hiring the right people from the start. Check out our free guide to uncover specific ways you can improve employee engagement at your business.

 

What Are the Benefits of Employee Engagement?

The value of employee engagement cannot be overstated. After all, your company can only be as good as its employees. Here are the three key benefits of an engaged workforce. 

1. Better Team Performance

When people are more engaged at work, it makes teams function better and accomplish more. If all of your employees are just waiting to clock out, it’s difficult for a team to get into a flow. Plus, employee engagement can be contagious. If one employee is motivated, their positive energy might influence another team member to perform in the same manner. 

2. Higher Employee Productivity

Not only are engaged employees more efficient and productive, but the actual work they produce is of higher quality. Research shows that highly engaged staff members are 22% more productive than those who are disengaged. 

3. Less Absenteeism

People are much more likely to call in “sick” when they are disengaged at their place of work. And, even when they do show up for a shift, they likely will not be fully present. Highly engaged team members, on the other hand, want to come to work because it gives them a sense of pride. 

Other benefits of having engaged employees include:

  • Less workplace stress
  • Lower employee turnover rates
  • Lower risk of burnout

No Business Can Afford to Overlook the Value of Employee Engagement

It’s easy to see how having engaged employees can transform your business’s productivity, growth, and overall success. But before you can commit to fostering an environment for engaged workers, you have to hire the right people. Luckily, Sprockets’ Applicant Matching System reveals which potential hires will succeed like your current top performers, empowering you to create highly motivated teams. Trusted by top brands like Chick-fil-A and Taco Bell, Sprockets users spend 37% less time on the hiring process, on average.