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Reducing the recruitment pain

Recruiting the right people for your business lies in the preparation as much as the interview itself, says Barry Neilson of Nucleus

Recruitment is often considered a problem by businesses and viewed with collective scepticism, particularly when considering the associated costs of hiring new people.

The shift in dynamic brought about by the Retail Distribution Review has also started to challenge the way adviser firms are structured. With the focus now on servicing clients rather than distributing products, there is more pressure than ever to give the right level of client engagement at the right price. Meanwhile the responsibility of sourcing new clients remains a key consideration for many firms.

Inevitably the spotlight is increasingly on the people who can make all this happen. Having the right team with the skills and experience you need to achieve your strategic goals will help to make sure that your firm’s objectives are realised and that you’re set up to achieve future growth.

But where do you start? Recruiting for any small business can be expensive and time consuming. Introducing a new person into an established team isn’t a scientific process. Yet it
is critical that you find people who are not only appropriately skilled, but who also fit the culture of your business if you want to move forward. The negative effects of a bad hire can go beyond cost and time spent – they can risk damaging the business’s reputation, staff morale and productivity.

It is always a risk to carry out any major change to a business without a well thought through strategy. When it comes to recruitment, having a structured process in place can greatly increase the likelihood of a successful outcome, and reduce unnecessary time and money spent on the process.

Defining requirements
Following a survey of our member firms, which revealed that recruitment continued to be a major obstacle for advisers, it became apparent that one of the keys to a successful process was clearly defining your requirements at outset before beginning the search.

You can define what you
need from your potential new recruits by firstly looking at your firm’s goals. What are the skills and experience needed to realise your growth strategy? Also think about the firm’s ideal organisational structure and how a change in resource would help you achieve it. Questions to ask:
• What’s your growth strategy – is it to bring on more advisers or more admin staff?
• What ratio of paraplanners and admin staff to advisers would you like?
• Is the role expected to generate additional revenue? If so, how quickly?
• Are you looking for advisers with an existing client bank or will you provide clients for them to service?
• If you’re looking for paraplanners, do you want them to be client facing or purely back- office based?
• Are you looking to provide development for your staff or will the role be fairly limited in terms of growth?

Internal candidate
Promoting internally would provide individual development and career progression, and has the opportunity to enhance employee engagement, retention and morale.
It also avoids the risk
of an external recruit not being aligned to the culture and objectives of the business. Recruitment is often considered a problem by businesses, when in fact
the process represents a tremendous opportunity to improve the quality of an organisation and its people.

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