If you want to be successful in managing the human resource within your small business, you need to (among other things):
Always undertake recruitment in the right manner
The ultimate goal here is to ensure that you always get the best possible people for the various roles within your business. In that regard, you have to start by figuring out what the ‘ideal’ person for each role in your small business would be like. So you try to work out what sorts of qualifications and personal attributes that person would need to have. Then you ensure that the person you ultimately hire for each role meets that ‘ideal’ profile as much as possible.
That approach to hiring may mean openly advertising positions which fall vacant within your business, as opposed to only relying on the people who knock on your door looking for work. (Or only relying on the people around you/on the people in your personal and social network).
It may also mean having a system where the job applicants are subjected to not only oral interviews, but also to practical interviews where they get to demonstrate that they are truly competent before being hired.
At yet another level, It may also be a question of seeing to it that you don’t hire overqualified people – and this is very important for a small business. The sorts of people you hire for the various roles in your small business should be those whose profiles are such they are likely to view the jobs given to them as truly good jobs. So this may at times be a matter of hiring folks who don’t have very impressive paper qualifications but who are nonetheless good at what they do. See, your small business may not be as ‘prestigious’ to work for as the big firms within the industry you are operating in. But if you look carefully, you will nonetheless find people whose circumstances are such that working in a business such as yours is a very good deal for them. Your bit is to find such people, then do your best to retain them.
Give proper onboarding training to your employees
After finding the best possible people to handle the various jobs in your small business, the next important thing is to give them proper onboarding training. The people may be truly competent at performing the tasks you have hired them for. But you need to train them on how your business systems work – otherwise the may continue doing things they way they always did at their old workplaces.
Give proper continuous training to your employees
It is not enough to just give proper onboarding training to your employees. Over and above that, you need to give them continuous training, to ensure that they remain on top of their game. The idea here is also to ensure that they are continually aware of how your business systems are supposed to operate. In a properly functioning business, there are well defined systems and processes, and the employees’ role is only to implement those systems and processes. This can only be happening if the employees are continually getting training on those business systems and processes (and explanations given to them on why things are being in certain ways).
Pay your employees competitive wages
All your other human resource management efforts will bear nothing if you don’t pay your employees competitive wages. Granted, you may not be in a position to match what the big firms in your industry are paying. But you should nonetheless endeavor to pay comparable amounts. You also need to ensure that you pay your employees in a timely manner.
Always treat your employees in a civil manner
You have to remember that human resource management is all about getting the best possible output from your employees. Then you need to understand that you are more likely to get the best possible output from your employees if you treat them in a civil manner. And this is not just about you as the business owner, but also about all other individuals (including the various supervisors) who hold various positions of power over other employees. You need to have a system where all relations within your business are civil. If you develop a reputation for treating your employees properly, you may soon or later get into a position where you are able to compete with the big firms in your industry for the best talent. This is where you would have employees willing to work for somewhat less money at your place where they are treated as human beings, as opposed to getting big money elsewhere where they would be constantly harassed.
Keep proper records for your employees
Proper records will help you in (among other things) tracking the performance of your employees on an ongoing basis. With proper records, you can be in a position to make objective decisions on which employees need to promoted, which employees need to be redeployed, which employees need to have their salaries raised… and so on. All these are critical things when it comes to proper management of the human resource. You need to ideally have a file for each of the employees in your small business, with all the details about him or her in there.
Comply with the local labor laws as much as possible
The most important thing here is to get yourself acquainted with the local labor laws that are in place where you are operating. Then you need to ensure that you are in strict compliance with those laws. Otherwise your business could at one point or another suffer major losses, say, due to penalties for non-compliance with the labor laws.
Know when to bring in a HR professional
You (as the small business owner) may be able to handle human resource management matters in the early stages of your business’ life. But as the business grows, and as the number of workers increases, it may eventually reach a point where you have to bring in a HR professional to deal with human resource management matters. You need to know when that time comes. Then at that point, you need to ensure that you hire the right type of person for HR management. After hiring the HR professional, you will need to train him or her thoroughly on your HR management policies. This would be with an aim to ensure that he or she doesn’t end up destroying what you have worked so hard to build within your business’ workforce.