Keys To Hiring Great Office Staff

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Author(s): 
Danielle Chicano, Editorial Associate

   Ms. Homisak agrees that you may ask candidates what their expectations are in order to learn if you both have the same general figure in mind. She advises employers to ensure they have a well-defined job description and not just a list of duties. Assign a “base wage” to the description and explain to the candidate what the job pays, she notes.

   Ms. Homisak says she likes to start potential employees on the “lower side of fair” until they prove their professionalism, proficiency and enthusiasm.

   If the applicant gets the job, you might want to employ a trial period both to review the new hire and provide an opportunity for a salary increase. Ms. Homisak incorporates a three- to six-month review period with new employees. She suggests giving an immediate wage increase if the new hire has made significant progress and has easily adapted to the practice’s expectations after the review period.

   “I would also mention to them that performance reviews take place annually and that future wage increases are not to be expected solely on longevity but on their performance and productivity,” adds Ms. Homisak.

References, Recommendations And Background Checks: Do They Matter?

How important are references, recommendations and background checks to the hiring process?

   “Very,” says Dr. Sanders. “A candidate is not hired without a background check, credit check and reference check.”

   These experts agree that references and recommendations can be useful resources provided that previous employers and references give you honest responses. More often than not, candidates will choose people who are going to provide you with positive responses, notes Ms. Homisak. She advises employers to read recommendations with a “grain of salt.”

   “I usually follow up with previous employer reference leads. Even though they typically yield very limited details, their silence says a lot too,” adds Ms. Homisak.

   She and Dr. Werber emphasize the importance of background checks as a safety precaution before hiring. Dr. Werber explains that in this line of work, certain criminal involvement could be detrimental.

   “Background checks are important to ensure no criminal past or involvement with recreational drugs,” notes Dr. Werber. “(I am) most concerned with stealing of prescription drugs or calling in prescriptions without my knowledge.”

   Although he emphasizes the importance of background checks, Dr. Werber notes that references are usually a waste of time. He explains that his office does follow up with references but notes references very rarely provide honest opinions about the candidate.

In Conclusion

As these experts note, it is vital to know not only what you are looking for but also what you should avoid in a potential employee. Taking the necessary time and energy to evaluate and interview candidates, recognize red flags and follow up with references can help you find employees who will benefit you, your staff and the future of your practice.

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