Determining When the Right Time to Hire Really Is


When the economy is good, and all companies are in a hiring mode, it’s tough for the smaller business to compete with larger companies, which draw well-qualified candidates based on the better opportunities they see at those companies in terms of job duties, pay, benefits and perks.

A down economy, when larger firms are laying people off or freezing their new hires, may seem like an ideal time for smaller firms to scoop up some talented employees that might go elsewhere in better times.  But small firms also are affected by economic slowdowns, and may be reluctant to hire.

So when is a good time to hire?

There are several elements to look at when determining a good time to hire.

The first is cash flow – make sure it’s moving in a positive direction, to make sure you can afford your new hire.  You want to look at trends in your sales and profits for about three to six months.  Is there an increase?  The amount of time you are looking at for cash flow will vary with the industry you are in.  But new employees need to bring in enough revenue to pay for themselves.  To determine that, you need to look at what similar employees are producing and trends in the market.

Other expenses to keep in mind when hiring include advertising to attract applicants; the time to sift through resumes, do background checks and interview; training the employees; and lost productivity for new employees who don’t work out.

Find out what your competition is doing.  Check out their websites.  This may also help determine if it’s an opportune time to hire.

Network to find out about the local market  – are people buying?

Also, a new hire might be determined by other needs – you may need to hire someone with a certain expertise in order to expand your business.

Finally, you may need to hire if you see that employees are making more mistakes, which may be sign that they are handling too much.

If you’re still reluctant to hire, one alternative is to look at temporary employees or interns.  This is a good way to fill slots when your labor needs are going up and down.

If that’s the case, contact RealStreet Staffing. We can create a strategic staffing plan that you can use at any time, whether business is booming or you need to be, well, strategic. In addition, we can supply you with reliable and skilled employees for short or long-term temporary assignments at your Washington Metro company, as well as your direct-hire needs. Contact us today!

A career in construction administration and management can be (and for me has been) one of constant transition. It’s rather common that employment with a given company starts and finishes with each successive project; you’re a new hire as it’s just getting “out of the ground,” then finished and looking for a new project (and Read More…

Greg Wangler, Pentagon Construction Management Division

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