Engaging employees in small business hiring

06 August, 2019
Gpayroll - peer

Despite being a dot on the map, with an unemployment rate of 2 per cent and a GDP per capita of close of USD 58,000 in 2017, this makes the Singapore's economy one of the strongest in the world. This economy is powered by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which unanimously are a crucial component of the Singapore economy. According to figures from the Department of Statistics, SMEs have generated half of the nation's growth in gross value added since 2013.


With the rapid developments in technology, Singapore is on a Smart Nation drive and naturally, SMEs are likely to pay a key role in this development. In recent years, the nation has already seen a rise in adoption of cashless payments, delivery drones - the list goes on. As such, an increasing number of SMEs are expecting a growth in business this 2018.

Based on survey results from CPA Australia's eighth annual Asia-Pacific Small Business Survey, 57 per cent of local businesses surveyed had a positive outlook on the growth opportunities for 2018. Likewise, an increasing number of SMEs expect to introduce a new product, service or process in 2018 as opposed to 2017.

With the upbeat outlook on business and growth opportunities for SMEs in 2018, the demand for headcount is likely to increase concurrently. However, the issue that small business owners often struggle with is that the budget for human resources (HR) functions tend to be relatively conservative as opposed to other business functions. More often than not, small business managers themselves tend to take on the role of HR generalist. The business growth, coupled with the lack of resources, can leave managers scrambling to quickly fill up these positions. As such, it might be difficult to thoroughly screen a candidate who might be the best fit for the role, resulting in high turnover rates.

However, while a small business might not have the necessary resources to put together a dedicated recruitment team, there is no one who knows the business better than the employees themselves. As such, instead of focusing efforts to put together a dedicated recruitment team, why not leverage on the employees themselves to source for the best candidates for the company - and here are some ways to do so.

Start a referral program

An employee referral program is the quickest and perhaps the most reliable way to engage your employees in the hiring process. Setting up a referral program is fairly and only require two things. The first would be to ensure clear communication and easy accessibility of information to employees on the job vacancies. The second would be to ensure that referral incentives are transparently rewarded to employees. To ensure that you get the most out of your referral program (and to have your employees channel the best candidates that they know into your hiring process), it is crucial to be open and honest about the referral program.

Peer recruiting

Peer recruiting refers to involving employees in the hiring process. Employees might be tasked to scout, screen or even interview potential candidates. In some cases, a peer recruiter may also be involved in the new hire's onboarding process, helping out with the paperwork and showing the new hire the ropes of the company. Not only does peer recruitment help to take the load of sourcing for new employees off your shoulders, it also helps to ensure that the potential candidates are screened by experts who have the knowledge to pose relevant interview questions to the interviewees.

While these are some ways to engage your employees in the recruitment process, do bear in mind that some employees might not want to take on this additional responsibility regardless of how you incentivise it. Likewise, certain employees might not be suited to screen the best candidates for each role. Instead of forcing every employee into the recruitment process, provide employees with the opportunity to voice their opinions about workplace decisions - whether it is a new hire, a particular onboarding process or even beyond the recruitment and this helps to provide a sense of indication that the company values employees' opinions.