Here are five suggestions for how your small business can save on human resources without affecting overall operations.
Considering today's uncertain economic climate, it is crucial that you cut costs in any way that you can. Many turn to their advertising spend, business software or even their employees. Although your HR department may seem off-limits from cost-cutting because of the important role it plays, there are, in fact, ways you can save on human resources without affecting overall operations. Here are five suggestions.
1. Streamline Recruiting One of the best ways to save on HR expenses is to streamline your recruiting process. Endlessly searching CareerBuilder or Monster is not an effective way to search for candidates. Instead, consider using social media sites such as Twitter and LinkedIn. According to MBAOnline, one in six workers found their job through social media in 2011, and it's a low-cost way for your firm to locate quality help.
Furthermore, if your job listing is more directed toward higher-earning candidates, consider the website TheLadders. It's directed at folks who earn more than $40,000 per year, so if you're looking for a higher-level individual, you're better off advertising there than on a more generalized job search website.
2. Consider Outsourcing Let's say you're a soloprenuer going it alone, and you want to bring on an HR staff member. Instead of hiring a full-time individual, consider outsourcing to freelancers. Plenty of outsourcing options are available at the websites Guru and Freelancer, so if your HR needs are rather basic, this option may save you a bundle of money. You can also outsource all your HR efforts to a PEO.
3. Use Technology to Reduce Travel Have a candidate you're dying to hire who lives across the country? Reduce your travel costs by using technology during the interview process. You can use Skype, GoToMeeting, or even Gmail chat to conduct your interviews. The days of long flights to land high-quality candidates are over: You can do all of your communications online.
4. Utilize Cost Effective Rewards Your HR team is important, but that's no reason to be reckless with the expense of rewards. To reduce costs, partner up with a business in your area and trade discounts from your business for freebies from their organization. That's an excellent way to even out the cost of rewarding your high performers.
5. Offer Telecommuting You can simultaneously reduce expenses at your business and offer the benefit of telecommuting to your HR team. You'll reduce their labor costs, as well as your own. Fewer employees showing up at the office results in reduced paper costs, fewer IT troubles, and less energy spent at your place of business. It's truly a win-win situation.
Final Thoughts In addition to taking the above measures, make sure your HR team has the best software available so that they can do their job more effectively. This requires an upfront investment, but will pay off down the road. Both Sage and iCIMS offer comprehensive HR software products, designed for small businesses, that can improve the productivity of your HR staff members and there are number of other options out there for you to choose from. Cutting staffing is the last thing you want to have to do to cut costs, so if you can make them more productive by providing them with the latest technology, you'll keep your current team in place now and save more money later.
Have you thought about your HR department when it comes to cost savings?
Author Bio: David Bakke is a small business owner based in Atlanta and columnist for the popular personal finance blog, Money Crashers.
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