Created on Tuesday, 28 June 2011 00:00
Written by Jayson Tan
Being a small business owner or the boss of a start-up doesn't necessarily mean you have to be the only employee(s) of the company. Employees are not just the solution to too much work; they could drastically increase your bottomline if well-planned.
In part one of our 'Hiring 101' series, we will be asking you questions that will help you answer if it's time for you to get some helping hands!Are you working too hard – and sleeping too little?
If you are missing meals and working 16-hour workdays regularly, chances are that you are overworked even if you are making healthy profits – it is the first 'yes' in the flow chart towards hiring a new employee. On the other hand, if you are not making reasonable profits for the amount of time and effort you are putting in, you might still need to hire. Only this time, it may be a case of more returns with less input! Nonetheless, it is a good time to examine your work processes and put some thought into streamlining your process, whether you hire or not. Are you majoring in your minor (chores)?
Are you distracted from strategical aspects of your business no thanks to being bogged down by administrative tasks? If so, simply do a quick mental calculation. Will you earn more from, for example, spending three agonizing hours sorting out your accounts or use that same amount of time to plan a good business development strategy? Then think, how much does it cost to employ a freelance accountant or a freelancer for anything else to do what they might spend 30 minutes on that you spend three (torturous) hours on?
The time saved from hiring someone to do the chores could be put to much better use. Spend time on your strengths and leave your weakness to the freelance specialists – you will find that it is much less agonizing and more cost efficient! Are you overwhelmed by sales?
If you find yourself turning away customers simply because your schedule's packed to the brim, that is a shame as well as a sure sign that you need to hire. Or at least earn some commission for recommending the job to a friend in the same line. Can you afford to employ?
Can the profit surplus accommodate an extra pair of hands? Also, will your new staff be a cost burden or a possible revenue generator? If it is the former, how much faster will the extra hands help in turnover time for projects?
There is no shortcut to this. You simply have to sit down and do some detailed calculations. Think, the return on investments minus how much the extra help is going to cost. Sometimes, it might not be a positive figure, but for a better work-life balance, you might just find it more worthwhile to employ anyway!
And if you decide to employ… look out for the second part of our 'Hiring 101' series on who and what kind of help to hire!