Blog

Skills vs. Attitude: Which is More Important to Hire for?

August 14th, 2018

When it comes to the hiring process, you know you need to evaluate for both skills and attitude. But is one more important than the other? If, for instance, you have two strong candidates – one with a better attitude and potential and the other with a stronger skill set – which should you choose?

It can definitely be tough to tell and with so much on the line, you don’t want to make a mistake. Murray Resources, leading Houston headhunters, has the answers you need. Here are some tips to help you during the decision-making process:

Consider the job.

For some jobs, it makes sense to focus more on attitude; for others, technical skills are of prime importance. That’s why you should first and foremost consider the job you’re hiring for.

If, for instance, you need a highly analytical accountant, then the best attitude in the world won’t matter much if their mathematical skills aren’t up to par. That’s not to say you’d hire someone with a poor attitude; it just might not take center stage during the hiring process.

If, however, you need a customer service representative who can handle problem situations with tact and empathy, then attitude is going to outweigh technical skills that can be taught.

Consider your company and its culture.

You might get resumes from candidates with tons of experience and plenty of enthusiasm. However, once on the job, you could find out they’re a complete dud. What gives? After all, they seemed to have both the right technical skills and a good attitude.

As Houston headhunters, we know it often comes down to poor fit. For example, if your culture is fast-paced and collaborative, and your new hire is more the laid back, lone wolf type, then they’re not going to thrive, even with the right skills and a positive attitude. So cultural fit is critically important to assess, as well, beyond skills and attitude.

Consider the candidate.

When you’re trying to decide between a candidate with a better attitude and one with more skill consider the strengths and weaknesses of each. Does one candidate seem more focused on learning and skill development than another? Is there a clear winner when it comes to communication skills? How do they work best and which is a better fit for your particular company and culture? In the end, your goal is to ensure whomever you do hire will be with you for the long-term.

Need help hiring candidates with the right skills and a great attitude?

Call in the the experienced Houston headhunters at Murray Resources. For over 30 years, we’ve been providing world-class recruiting services to leading companies in and around Houston. Contact us today to learn more or get started with our firm.

Posted in: Blog

Estimating the Cost of Employee Turnover

July 30th, 2018

Have you ever stopped to figure out exactly how much time you have to invest in hiring an employee? Activities, like screening phone calls, reviewing resumes and arranging interviews, can really be time-consuming. This exercise will help you develop an accurate estimate of how much time you spend locating a suitable individual.

For the following recruiting and hiring activities, estimate how long each would take to complete. Once you’ve done that, total the number of hours. You may be surprised at what you find.

Recruiting and Hiring ActivitiesEstimated Time Required
Developing position specifications (job description, compensation package, etc.)
Writing, laying out and placing ad
Screening phone calls (how many phone calls might you receive to an ad?)
Receiving and scanning resumes (how many resumes would you wade through to find a few good ones?)
Reviewing resumes
Developing a short list of possible candidates
Arranging interviews (how many first interviews would you need to schedule?)
Conducting first interviews
Developing a second shortlist based on interviews
Arranging second interviews
Conducting reference checks
Extending an offer
Sending rejection letters
Other recruiting and hiring activities:
Grand Total:

This analysis makes several assumptions:

  • You get a great response to your first advertisement
  • The first person offered the job accepts and starts
  • The first person hired works out for the long-term

If any of these assumptions turns out not to be true, the figure you just calculated could easily skyrocket.

How can permanent placement services help?

Reclaim Time – A staffing service will handle the majority of the administrative burden associated with hiring a new employee. For any job opening, you’ll only hire one person out of all those you see. Most of the time you spend is completely wasted. What more productive activities could you engage in, if you didn’t have to spend time advertising, recruiting, screening and reference checking?

Better Quality Applicants – Often, the best people are already working. The perfect person for a position with your company may not have time to look for another job or may be concerned about confidentiality issues. People in this situation often turn to staffing services to help search for new employment. As a result, staffing services have access to candidates who may not otherwise be available to your company.

Guarantees – If a candidate proves to be unsuitable within a specified frame of time, most staffing services will replace that candidate free of charge (each service’s guarantees vary). This saves you all the time and hassle of replacing a bad hire on your own.

Shorten the Placement Cycle – Placement services leverage their recruiting and advertising expense across multiple clients, and are constantly searching for skilled individuals. They employ multiple recruiting tactics like advertising, direct recruiting, networking and computerized databases to maintain a large pool of applicants. Access to vast applicant resources may enable a staffing service to locate a candidate for you more quickly.

Confidentiality – Recruiters provide strict confidentiality, which can keep competitors from being tipped off to company changes, new product releases, and can protect against employee and supplier apprehension. Recruiters value the sensitive information they are trusted with during the search process and respect their client’s vulnerability.

Estimating the cost of a bad hire:

In many cases, staffing services offer less expensive alternatives to getting your work done. For example, do you know what it really costs you to employ your staff? The “hidden” expenses associated with being an employer are often underestimated. Things like recruiting, interviewing, training, benefits administration, management, and turnover really add up. Consider the following expenses for an administrative employee at $20,000 who terminates after one month:

Cost AreaExampleYour Estimated Cost
HR Time
Specification of position
Prepare classified ad
Review resumes from 100 ad responses
Telephone screen 10 candidates
Schedule, prepare for, and conduct 5 interviews
Assessment testing for 3 candidates
Reference checking for 3 candidates
Total HR time ($ per hour x hours)$40 x 30 = $1,200
Other Recruitment / Interviewing Costs
Management interview time ($ per hour x hours)$50 x 6 = $300
Other interviewers’ time ($ per hour x hours)$50 x 9 = $450
Cost of advertising (15 line ad run for 3 Sundays)$450
Salary and Related Costs
Salary (for one month)$1,666
Benefits (based on national average of 31%*)$516
Overhead, administrative expense, etc. (20%*)$333
Training / Orientation / Answering Questions
Trainer’s time ($ per hour x hours)$15 x 16 = $240
Manager’s time ($ per hour x hours)$50 x 8 = $400
Productivity Losses
Compensating for sub-standard performance (co-workers doing or re-doing bad hire’s work: assumes bad hire is working at 5% capacity)$10 x 40 = $400
Grand total:$5,955

 

Additional Expenses to Consider:

 This estimate of the real cost of a bad hire doesn’t even take into account costs which are extremely difficult to calculate, such as:

  • the negative effect on co-workers’ productivity and morale
  • lost business and opportunities due to mishandling by the employee
  • unemployment compensation, severance pay or legal fees
  • recruitment and training costs which you must incur again to replace the employee.

Imagine what the cost would be for a mid-level manager who terminated after three months.

The Bottom Line:

Although the examples provided in this exercise are quite conservative, they effectively demonstrate the real value staffing services provide: lowering costs, improving focus, reducing the risk of not finding qualified candidates through traditional resources. If you are interested in increasing your organization’s profitability, staffing services can play a major role.

To learn how Murray Resources can help you with your recruiting/staffing needs, contact us today at 713) 935-0009

Posted in: Blog

Hiring? Find Out What Really Attracts Top Talent

July 24th, 2018

When it comes to hiring, talented professionals have a lot of choices these days. So what can you do to make your company more attractive to them? As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources has the answers you need. Here’s a look at a few key factors that come into play when candidates are weighing offers:

Pay & Benefits

Of course, compensation is a big part of the equation when it comes to deciding where to work. Not only do candidates need to be fairly compensated in order to maintain their quality of life, but also to demonstrate that you value them and the skills they bring to the table.

Culture

Every company is unique with different cultures. Your culture might be more casual and laid back, or more formal. Just make sure that it offers an environment that’s a healthy place to work for all individuals. They should feel respected, recognized for hard work, and encouraged to voice their opinions on issues that matter to them.

Flexibility

Today’s employees want more flexibility in terms of where and when they work. Companies that can meet those needs through telecommuting have a leg up when it comes to recruiting top talent. Offering the ability to telecommute two to three days each week seems to offer employers and employees the balance they both need when it comes to collaborating in the office and working from home.

Clear Expectations

If the job description seems vague, or if questions go unanswered during the hiring process, then the most qualified candidates will look elsewhere for opportunities. Instead, be clear about the role, responsibilities and qualifications. Also discuss growth opportunities, as well as challenges that come with the position.

Development Opportunities

Highly skilled individuals want to work for those companies that offer room for growth and opportunities to advance. To attract this level of talent, you need to offer incentives such as mentoring programs, training resources, stretch assignments and room for autonomy.

Authenticity

At the end of the day, employees want to work at places where they’re excited to come to work each day. That’s why long-winded job postings that are cumbersome to read don’t attract the right kind of people. Instead, show candidates what it’s really like to work at your company. For instance, post videos that offer tours of your office. Or ask employees to author posts about the culture and what they like most about it.

Interested in handing off parts of your hiring function to our experts?

Let Murray Resources know. As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, we’ve helped high-performance organizations build their teams for over 30 years – and we can help you too. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Are Negative Online Reviews Hurting Your Employer Brand? Here’s What to Do

July 10th, 2018

Your online reviews play a big part in your reputation among your customers. But did you know they also impact your ability to recruit, as well? As a leading staffing agency in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that just like customers, candidates too look to these to judge whether or not they’d like to apply for an opportunity with your company.

So what if someone, like a disgruntled former employee, posts something negative about your workplace? What should you do?

First and foremost, it’s always important to track online comments and know what people are saying about your company. That doesn’t mean you should respond to every negative comment out there. However, if something that’s stated is clearly false and it’s especially damaging to your brand, then it is important to consider responding. Here’s how to do it in a productive manner:

Take anger out of the equation.

Don’t respond in anger or hurl insults at the person that’s posting. Instead, be diplomatic and simply respond with an honest answer. If their criticism is a fair one, then acknowledge it and talk about the steps you’re taking to fix the issue. If it’s not, then give specific examples as to why. Keep in mind that everything you post will be seen by the general public, so you want to keep your comments professional.

Keep it short and clear.

Don’t go into a 2,000 word diatribe about your company and why the negative comments aren’t true. Instead, you simply want to get your point across in a clear and concise manner, always being polite with whatever you’re communicating.

Don’t demand a reviewer take down their comment.

If you do, then you’ll come off as overly sensitive and even like you’re trying to hide something. People might even believe there’s truth to the comments even when there isn’t.

In today’s world, having a positive employer brand is a valuable asset that can help boost your recruitment efforts and your business bottom line. Follow the tips above to make sure these don’t take a hit because of a few negative comments online.

Need help creating a strong employer brand and attracting top talent?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As a leading staffing agency in Houston, TX, we can give you tips and advice on crafting an employer brand that will stand out to today’s best talent, as well as get to work sourcing, screening and vetting quality candidates. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Stop Employee Burnout with a Staffing Agency in Houston TX

June 26th, 2018

Keeping employees later, requesting that they take on added responsibility, and contacting them after hours with specific needs might get the job finished and out the door. But your staff is going to get stressed in the process. Not only that, but over time, being overworked impacts morale, job satisfaction and retention rates.

The good news is that working with a reputable staffing agency in Houston TX can help. In fact, when you partner with one, they can prevent this scenario from happening in the first place. They can work with you to identify your busy times of year and future staffing needs, and plan well in advance to ensure you have the right people in the right positions when you need them.

Just a few specific ways a staffing agency in Houston TX can ensure your company avoids employee burnout – and all of its consequences – include by:

Enabling employees to take time off without worry.

Your employees should be able to take personal days and vacation time without being inundated with requests and needs. Working with a staffing agency will facilitate the process. You can get qualified temporary employees to fill a variety of roles and cover vacations, or sick or maternity leave. That way, work can still get done while your full-time employee take off the time needed.

Helping your people focus on their priorities.

Employees don’t want to have to take on tasks and duties that aren’t a part of their job description for an extended period of time. But when this is happening out of necessity – because you don’t have anyone else to handle the work – it’s time to consider adding to your team, whether in the form of full-time staff or temporary workers. When you do, your employees can then focus on their priorities and playing to their strengths.

Letting you take on new projects and initiatives without adding stress to your staff.

If you don’t have the manpower to take on new projects and have to turn them down, your bottom line can suffer. If you accept anyway, it can take a toll on your team in the form of tight deadlines, longer workdays and lots of stress. That’s where a staffing agency can help and give you access to skilled workers on a temporary or temporary-to-hire basis.

Whether you need seasonal workers to get through a busy period or you’re ready to bring aboard full-time team members, a staffing agency can meet a wide variety of needs. You can gain access to extra hands or those with a specialized skill set, all while focusing on running your business or managing your department.

Interested in learning more about avoiding burnout with a staffing agency?

Call the team at Murray Resources. As a leading staffing agency in Houston TX, we can help you find the qualified people you need, where and when you need them, whether on a temporary or full-time basis. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Staffing Solutions: What Are the Different Options & Which is Right for You?

June 12th, 2018

Today’s economy is rapidly changing. To stay at the forefront of your industry, you need the right people in the right positions, and also enough flexibility to limit overhead and take advantage of new opportunities. Working with a staffing agency in Houston, TX can help you achieve all this and more.

That said, there are many different solutions available. If you’re not an expert, it can be difficult to know which is right for you and your team. To help you make the best decision – and partner with the right staffing agency in Houston, TX – here’s an overview of some common services available:

Direct hire / permanent staffing.

This staffing service is designed to fill roles that are full-time, permanent in nature, and typically offer benefits. With this service, your staffing agency will source talent from both passive and active pools, as well as screen, interview, and vet candidates through a strict hiring process.

Contract / temporary staffing.

This provides for an employment situation where an individual is hired for a specified period of time, at a specified rate. They are typically on the payroll of the staffing agency, not the company. Contract and temporary staffing are both ideal when you have busy seasons where you need extra manpower, or if you have a short-term project that requires a specialized skill set.

Temporary-to-hire staffing.

When you know you need to hire, but aren’t sure whether it’s on a full-time or temporary basis, this service can provide you with more insight before making a permanent decision. With it, you can bring an individual on board for a specified period of time. If you’re satisfied with their performance and can continue to sustain demand, then you can choose whether or not to make a full-time offer.

Payrolling.

An arrangement where your staffing agency serves as the employer of record and handles the administrative burdens associated with payroll. This offers a range of benefits, including helping your company to reduce HR-related overhead costs, as well as eliminating administration time, so you can focus on other business priorities.

Onsite recruiting management.

Recruiting services, provided right onsite at your company’s location, to better assist with recruitment efforts when you have a regular need for employees. Services include sourcing candidates, interviewing them, conducting background and reference checks, and facilitating the hiring process.

Ready to take advantage of one or more of these staffing services?

Connect with the choice for staffing in Houston, TX: Murray Resources. We can get to know your company, your culture and your hiring needs, all to create a strategic plan with the right blend of services to keep you optimally staffed at all times. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Hiring? Get Strategies for Improving the Interview Process

May 22nd, 2018

The job interview is your ticket to finding the best candidates to hire. The more effective it is, the better your hiring decisions will be.

Sounds simple enough, right? And yet, according to statistics, nearly half of new hires fail on the job within the first 18 months. All of those might not be due to weak interviews. However, as one of Houston’s seasoned staffing firms, we know that many hiring mistakes can be avoided by a sound process that helps you interview more consistently and effectively. To help improve yours, here are a few strategies to put to use:

Make sure interviewers are trained

If the people conducting interviews aren’t on the HR staff – and are managers in their departments instead – make sure they’re thoroughly trained on interview best practices. For instance, you want to instruct them to evaluate candidates more on facts, not on hunches or impressions. Likewise, you can provide behavioral based interview training so they have the tools and tactics needed to take a deeper dive into a candidate’s background and experience.

Be transparent about the opportunity

Talk to every candidate about what the position entails and what it’s like to work at the company. When they ask about challenges that come with the role, be honest. Don’t try to sidestep these kinds of questions. Also, don’t make claims that aren’t true. If a candidate does accept the job based on inaccurate information, they probably won’t stick around for long.

Offer a positive candidate experience

The interviewer isn’t the only doing the evaluating. Candidates too are sizing up your organization and the opportunity. It’s important not to lose sight of that in the interview process and to create a positive candidate experience as a result.

When candidates are left in the dark after an interview, are treated rudely by a staff member, or aren’t given the time to ask questions during an interview, it’s going to impact their impression of your company. Even if you don’t end up hiring them for the current position, they could be the right fit for one down the line. So you want to put your best foot forward with each one.

Ask candidates why they want to work for you

There are plenty of candidates out there looking for just any job. You want the ones who have a strong desire to work at your company and land this opportunity. To find them, ask why they want the job. If they don’t have an answer, then they’re probably not the right fit.

Schedule two rounds of interviews

It can be tough to tell whether a candidate is right for the job after just one interview. That’s why it’s important to schedule a second one. Interviewers can take the time needed to regroup and reflect on candidates. In addition, a second interview offers an opportunity to get behind the candidate mask and dig deeper into each one’s background.

Get better hires with Murray Resources

Don’t have the time or resources to devote to the hiring process? Let Murray Resources help. As one of Houston’s top staffing firms, we can deliver the talent you need through a rigorous sourcing, interviewing and hiring process. We can even conduct skills testing and background checks, all to ensure you get the high-quality people you need. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

What to Do When a Candidate Seems Too Good to Be True

May 8th, 2018

You know there’s no such thing as the perfect candidate. Each one has their own weaknesses or drawbacks. It’s up to you to determine the issues you can live with and the deal breakers you can’t.

However, what if you stumble across a candidate that seems too good to be true? They check all the right boxes and then some. You’re worried they’re pulling the wool over your eyes. And yet, you’re tempted to offer them the job today, right now. What should you do to ensure you make a smart hiring decision? Here are a few tips from Murray Resources – leading Houston recruiters – to help you:

Invite them back for a second interview.

Not sure about a candidate? Bring them back for a second interview. When you do, dig deep, get specific and ask detailed questions. Also, if they offer any vague answers,  follow up and encourage them to elaborate. Listen for signs that they’re simply repeating a practiced answer that sounds good, or if they’re really showing their authentic self. The more detail they can offer, the more confident you can be in their responses.

Give them a homework assignment.

As Houston recruiters, we know that sometimes candidates look great on paper and ace the interview, only to fall apart once on the job. To ensure that doesn’t happen to you, give the candidate a small assignment similar to the work they’d do if hired. This will give you a good indication of their ability to follow directions, get tasks done in a timely manner, and how well they’d perform if offered the job.

Check their references carefully.

Get at least three references total from the candidate with two of them being from past managers or bosses. When you call references, talk to them specifically about attitude and work quality. These are the two areas that will have the biggest impact on the candidate’s success in the job, so any insight a past manager can offer will be extremely valuable.

If, after following these steps, you feel uncomfortable with the prospect of hiring a seemingly perfect candidate, then go with your gut. There’s a red flag or something holding you back, even if it’s on a subconscious level. When you hire, you want to have total peace of mind that the person you’re bringing on board is right for the job and your company. So don’t make a move until you’re sure.

Would you like professional help with the hiring process?

With the Houston recruiters at Murray Resources, not only do you get expert assistance sourcing, screening, and hiring great candidates, but we can also serve as your go-to source for tips, information and advice on hiring. With our team, you get a true partner in your company’s staffing success. Learn more today by contacting our Houston recruiters.

Posted in: Blog

How to Make the Case for Your Company in the Interview

March 27th, 2018

In an interview, you expect candidates to sell themselves and why you should hire them. But you too have some persuading to do. In fact, as experienced Houston headhunters, Murray Resources knows that top talent has their pick of job offers and if you don’t make a solid case about what sets your organization apart from the competition, they could accept offers from other companies. To help ensure that doesn’t happen to you, here are 3 tips to follow:

Know the job.

If you don’t know the ins and outs of the particular position you’re hiring for, learn as much as you can about them. This way, you can talk authentically about the benefits and pitfalls that a candidate might face if hired, so they can get a clear picture of the opportunity. Not only that, but truly look objectively at the position. If you were looking for a similar job, would it be something that interests you? If not, then the best candidates aren’t going to want to accept it either. Think through how you can make it more attractive so you can recruit the quality people you need.

Know your brand.

Companies tend to talk about their brand with new hires, but not as much with candidates. But your brand is a big part of what sets you apart from other employers; it’s what differentiates you from everyone else. So, as you’re talking with candidates, weave in important points about your company, how it’s unique, and what your existing team likes most about working there. And don’t rely on clichés, like how you’re really one big family. The best candidates will see through this. Instead, dig deeper and offer them information about the experienced executive team, the kinds of innovative people they’d be working with, and how the company deals with issues, like market challenges.

Know what candidates want.

As Houston headhunters, we know that every candidate is different and motivated by varying factors. That said, there are a few that top everyone’s lists. For instance, talk about scheduling flexibility and telecommuting if you offer it to employees. Also discuss compensation and salary, as well as any perks that employees especially enjoy. Other areas to consider include your internal promotion policy, mentoring and continuing education opportunities, and your recognition and rewards program. These will help candidates get a bigger picture sense of what you can offer them and their careers, all so you can attract and hire the best people.

Interested in more recruiting and hiring help from Houston’s top headhunters?

Turn to the experts at Murray Resources. As Houston headhunters, our biggest priority is delivering exceptional job candidates to local companies just like yours. We make the sourcing, screening, interviewing, and evaluating process easier, so you can hire right, the first time. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you and your team.

Posted in: Blog

13 Questions to Help You Set Goals in 2018

December 26th, 2017

Don’t want to make New Year’s resolutions for 2018? That’s understandable considering that the vast majority – something like 80% – go unfulfilled. But, as a leading provider of staffing in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows if you’re a manager, you should be setting specific goals for your team in the New Yer. And there are some questions to ask ahead of time to ensure you’re setting the right goals; ones that are achievable too. Here’s a look at 13 of them:

  • What do you wish you would have done last year that you didn’t? How can you incorporate that into your new goals for the New Year?
  • What are your top three priorities in the New Year and how will you measure progress toward achieving them?
  • What are your biggest overall career goals and what steps can you take toward achieving them in 2018?
  • What skills are most important for you to learn in the year head?
  • What business or professional development books should you be reading in 2018?
  • What other professional development goals should you be setting? How do you plan to achieve them?
  • What are your biggest strengths? What are some ways you can put them to better use in 2018?
  • What are your biggest weaknesses? How can you overcome them in the New Year?
  • In what areas could you improve your own physical health? Sleep more, exercise consistently or eat better?
  • In what ways do you want to give back and help others in the year ahead?
  • What is the number one most important thing you’d like to accomplish in 2018?
  • How will you better nurture relationships with each individual employee in the coming year?
  • How can you better help your team succeed in the New Year? What’s the biggest problem they’re having? How can you work together to overcome it?

If one of the area’s you and your team are struggling in involves a lack of available manpower or a skill gap, let the team at Murray Resources help. As a leading provider of staffing in Houston, TX, we have the knowledge and experience – not to mention the expansive candidate network – to help you find and hire the people you need, where and when you need them. So if you’re looking for a better and easier way to hire in the year ahead, simply contact Murray Resources. We can help.

Posted in: Blog

Tough Call: Making the Decision Between Two Strong Candidates

December 12th, 2017

During the hiring process, you might be hoping for one top candidate to emerge. But, as local headhunters in Austin, Murray Resources knows that when you have two equally strong individuals, it’s certainly a tough decision. How can you best make the call – and choose the right one? With just a few tips:

Look at the big picture.

You have an immediate opening you need to fill. But before you make a decision, look at the big picture of the position and evaluate who would be the best-fit person overall in the long-term. For instance, one candidate might have more growth potential than another and could therefore be a more valuable and lucrative investment for your company.

Evaluate culture and personality.

Your company likely has a distinct workplace culture. Finding people who are the best fit for it is important. If you don’t, you’ll hire those who can do the job, but won’t be happy within the workplace. As a result, they’ll grow disengaged over time and will eventually leave. Your best bet instead is finding and hiring those people who can blend well with your culture.

Think about enthusiasm.

Does one candidate seem more enthusiastic or energetic than another? As headhunters in Austin, we know this is just another indication as to which candidate could be a better fit. Beyond energy level, assess interest too by thinking about which candidate asked more questions during the hiring process. Also, who followed up with you after the interview or wrote a thank you note? As you’re thinking about these different aspects of the process, it will quickly become clear who was more enthusiastic.

Give them a homework assignment.

If you’ve weighed all these factors and are still undecided, give them both a homework assignment. It should be just a small project that doesn’t take long to complete. But whatever they submit should give you some more insight into their work quality, level of enthusiasm, ability to adhere to directions and deadlines, and communication skills.

Once you have decided on a particular candidate, don’t lose touch with the other. They were obviously a strong contender for a reason. You don’t want to lose contact with them just because they weren’t right for this particular position.

Need professional help with your candidate sourcing and selection process?

Call the experts at Murray Resources. As experienced headhunters in Austin, we can help you source, recruit, screen and ultimately hire the best-fit professionals for a wide range of positions at your company. Simply contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

What Top Candidates Look for in Jobs

November 28th, 2017

Gearing up to hire for your company? It’s easy to focus on your wants and needs in a candidate. But are you also considering what today’s top talent wants in a job? As recruiters in Houston, Murray Resources knows if you’re not, then it’s going to be tough to communicate and market your opportunity in a way that’s most attractive to them.

If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few key attributes that local candidates look for in job opportunities:

Professional development.
Top candidates don’t want to stay stagnant in a position for the next 10 years. Instead, they always want to be learning and growing. And when you offer them opportunities where they can access professional training and development, they’re not only more likely to accept your job offer, but also to stay loyal to your company for the long-term.

Scheduling flexibility.
With technology today, it’s easier than ever to offer your employees some flexibility when it comes to scheduling. Whether you allow flex scheduling – where employees can start and leave either earlier or later in the day – or you opt for telecommuting, it’s up to you. But, as recruiters in Houston, we know that offering this benefit is an important one, especially when you’re striving to attract younger candidates.

Recognition.
Nobody wants to work at a place where they’re not recognized and rewarded for a job well done. This makes people feel like a valued part of the team and can enhance recruiting and retention efforts considerably. So create a culture of recognition and be sure to promote it during the hiring process.

An alignment of values.
Top quality candidates often look for companies that display a reputation and values that align with their own. They also want roles in which they can truly excel and make an important contribution. That’s why, when you’re in the middle of the recruiting and hiring process, you should always discuss and promote workplace values and culture. When you do, you’re more likely to attract those candidates who are the right fit for you.

A healthy culture.
In today’s world of social media, a company’s reputation can spread fast. And if yours has one for not treating employees well, or a stressful or toxic work culture, then you’re going to have a hard time sourcing and hiring the best candidates. On the other hand, a healthy culture – mixed with fun and a focus on work life balance – can go a long way in attracting quality talent.

Open communication.
As recruiters in Houston, we know that employees want to feel like a part of the team; not subordinates taking orders. That’s why it’s important to have an open communication policy with them, setting clear expectations and goals from the start. It’s also important to make sure they have an opportunity to have their voices heard and feel empowered to make a difference at your organization.

Need professional help recruiting and hiring talent for your company?
Call Houston’s trusted recruiters at Murray Resources. For over 30 years, we’ve helped high-performance organizations – including numerous Fortune 1000 companies – build their teams. And we can help you too. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Keep Employees On Staff & Happy

November 21st, 2017

As Houston headhunters, Murray Resources knows that at any given time, a majority of your employees are looking for a new job. That means if you’re not actively trying to retain them, the chance of losing them to another opportunity is high. So what can you do to keep top-quality people on board and happy at your company? Here are a few tips to help you:

Tip #1: Talk vision.

If your people don’t have a clear sense of where they’re going, they’ll eventually grow disillusioned. That’s why it’s important to talk vision on a regular basis. Not only that, but get into specifics about where they fit into the bigger picture and how their individual roles play an important part.

Tip #2: Set specific goals and measure performance.

For each employee, it’s important for them to know what’s expected of them and how their performance will be measured. So talk regularly on a one-on-one basis with your employees, checking in about their progress and any pain points or issues that are coming up. That way, you’ll have a better sense of where everyone stands, as well as better be able to nip problems in the bud before they escalate.

Tip #3: Offer skill development and training.

When it comes to the strongest employees, they always want to be moving ahead and advancing. That’s why it’s so important to offer them opportunities to acquire and develop new skills. Not only will they be more loyal to your company, but they can add more value in the process as they put their newfound knowledge to work.

Tip #4: Reward hard work.

When an employee goes above and beyond, reward them for their efforts. As top Houston headhunters, we know that even a few simple and specific words of praise can go a long way. You can also consider offering them perks in the form of extra vacation days or tangible items, like gift certificates.

Tip #5: Recruit for better fit employees.

When it comes to keeping employees engaged and motivated, one of the most important aspects is your recruitment process. If you’re not finding and hiring engaged and committed people in the first place – those who are a fit for your company’s culture – then you can’t possibly expect them to stick around for long.

Need more help hiring high quality workers and keeping them engaged?

Call Houston’s headhunters at Murray Resources. Our top priority is delivering exceptional job candidates to local companies just like yours. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Tips for Recruiting Out-of-Area Candidate

August 15th, 2017

If you need to hire for a hard-to-fill role, or one that requires a highly specialized skill set, you might need to expand the areas you’re recruiting from. Looking outside your geographic location for talent can certainly open you up to new possibilities in terms of candidates. At the same time, it can open you up to a host of new challenges, as well. How can you effectively recruit candidates who don’t currently live and work in the area? The experienced Dallas headhunters at Murray Resources have the answers:

Use technology to your advantage.

When you’re hiring from outside the area, one of the biggest challenges is the interview process. For instance, requiring a candidate to travel to your location four times to interview can be a hassle, especially if they’re already working and have a family.

Instead, use technology to your advantage during the hiring process. For instance, when it comes to out-of-area candidates, connect with them as much as possible through live video interviews. You might want to use these as a first screen in the hiring process. That way, you can get to know a candidate and their background first, before you spend the money to fly them out to your location.

Compensation is key.

As leading Dallas headhunters, Murray Resources knows that many top professionals are open to the idea of relocating for the right opportunity. However, what can often kill the deal comes down to compensation. Either the compensation isn’t attractive enough to entice a candidate to move their entire family, or the company isn’t willing to pay for the cost of relocating. But understand that if a candidate is willing to move for the job, they expect to compensated generously for it.

Keep families in mind.

Oftentimes, a candidate’s family can be the ones with the biggest objections to a potential move. That’s why when you’re recruiting outside of the area, you should pay plenty of attention to a candidate’s family. During the hiring process, it’s important to engage their spouse and family, ensuring you’re answering their questions and giving them the information they need to make the right decision.

Provide help with the details.

Relocating is tough. So make it easy for your candidates. Offer to help with the particulars, from setting them up with a local real estate agent to scheduling tours at area schools. Also, once they accept and start the job, pair your candidate up with a buddy who can not only help them acclimate to your company, but the area, as well.

Sometimes, the best professional for the job simply doesn’t live nearby. When this happens – and you’re recruiting outside the area – follow the tips above to put your best foot forward and find the talent you need.

If you need help recruiting in our area – or outside of it – call in the Dallas headhunters companies from all over the city trust: Murray Resources. Since 1988, Murray Resources has worked with Dallas’ leading organizations to identify their human resource needs, locate top talent, and maximize employee productivity. And we can help you too. Simply contact us today to learn more.

 

Posted in: Blog

4 Tips for Working with a Houston, TX Staffing Agency

August 1st, 2017

When it comes to running a business, staffing is one of the most important functions. However, sometimes there simply isn’t the time or resources necessary to devote to sourcing, screening and hiring the right people. Enter a staffing agency.

Whether you need short-term help for a busy season, or assistance finding your next full-time employee, a provider of staffing in Houston, TX has the capacity, expertise and connections to help you achieve your hiring goals – and build a stronger business.

If you’ve never worked with one before, here are a few tips for maximizing the relationship:

Tip #1: Choose the right agency.

Not all providers of staffing in Houston, TX are created equal. Some focus on temporary staffing; others on executive hires. Some firms specialize in technology or accounting, while other agencies hire mainly for administrative or industrial positions.

So whatever staffing agency you choose, make sure they have the industry experience you need to hire for your job openings. Not only will they have a better understanding of your company and the roles you’re trying to fill, but also more connections with candidates in your field.

Tip #2: Focus on communication.

Whether you have a new position opening up, demand is increasing, or you want to create a staffing strategy and long-term vision for hiring, keep your staffing agency in the loop. The clearer picture they have on where you are now – and where you want to go in the future when it comes to hiring – the better they’ll be able to serve you.

When it comes to recruiting for specific jobs, make sure you give your staffing agency recruiter plenty of detail on the role, tasks and expectations. Also, make sure the agency is fully informed on any company policies that impact the hiring process and new employees, such as dress code, working hours, and travel requirements.

Tip #3: Provide feedback.

During every step of the process, communicate feedback to your staffing agency recruiter. If there are any problems or issues, they should know about them immediately and work with you to resolve them promptly.

Tip #4: Evaluate the relationship.

When you partner with the right provider of staffing in Houston, TX, they’re going to be able to save you time and money in the hiring process. If, however, the opposite is true, then it’s time to re-evaluate the relationship.

The right staffing partner can benefit your company in tremendous ways. Just make sure you choose the best-fit one and keep those lines of communication open so you can maximize the working relationship.

Interested in learning more about how our staffing agency experts can help you?

Call Murray Resources. As a leading provider of staffing in Houston, TX, Murray Resources has worked with the city’s leading organizations since 1988 to identify their human resource needs, locate top talent, and maximize employee productivity. Contact us today to learn more and find out how we can help you.

Posted in: Blog

5 Secrets to Recruiting from a Top Headhunter in Houston

June 6th, 2017

As leading headhunters in Houston, Murray Resources knows that hiring the right candidate is both a challenge and an opportunity. You’ve got to weed through dozens or even hundreds of resumes and get behind the candidate mask during the interview. Plus, there’s all the legwork: scheduling phone screens, checking references, performing background checks, and more. At the same time, hiring also presents an important opportunity to help your company innovate and grow – which is why it’s such a critical function.

So how can you recruit and hire the absolute best for your team? As experienced headhunters in Houston, Murray Resources has you covered. Start with these 5 tips:

#1: Tell a story in your job posting.

Don’t post a lengthy job description full of company jargon. Keep in mind, the job posting is a candidate’s first interaction with you. And if you want to attract top talent you need to tell a story. What makes your company great? Why should a candidate want to work for you? What’s does the role entail and what’s unique, inspiring and challenging about it? Take your time in creating a job posting that’s going to make an impact and resonate with top talent.

#2: Be thoroughly prepared for interviews.

When interviewing and hiring candidates, the fundamentals still matter. That means being prepared with meaningful questions for the interview. Don’t simply wing it and expect to get the information you need. Also, before the interview, conduct some research on the candidate. Check them out on LinkedIn, review their resume again, and take a look at their online portfolio. That way, you’ll be able to delve deeper with questions that are specific to a candidate’s skills and experience.

#3: Provide a great candidate experience.

Throughout the recruiting and hiring process, make sure you treat every candidate with respect. You don’t owe them a job. But in today’s day and age of social media, one bad candidate experience can go viral or get Tweeted around the world – tarnishing your employer reputation in the process. Remember, even if you don’t extend a job offer, a little respect goes a long way.

#4: Nurture connections.

So you didn’t hire a particular candidate. But maybe they’d be a great fit for a future opportunity at your company. That’s why it’s important to stay in touch when you’ve identified those who could be a potential asset to your team down the line. Stay connected with them and nurture the relationship for future opportunities.

#5: Always be improving.

You might have a thorough recruiting and hiring process in place. But as top Houston headhunters, we recommend you should still always be improving and tweaking. Look to other organizations as to what they do during their hiring processes. Read about best practices and industry trends in hiring and recruiting. And always be on the lookout for ideas or tips that can help you boost your hiring success – and help your company grow.

Don’t have the time or resources to handle all your hiring needs in-house?

Call in the the experienced Houston headhunters at Murray Resources. For over 30 years, we’ve been providing world-class recruiting services to leading companies in and around Houston. Contact us today to learn more or get started with our firm.

Posted in: Blog

5 Biggest Hiring Mistakes – and How to Avoid Them

May 9th, 2017

As top Houston staffing experts, Murray Resources knows a hiring mistake isn’t just a drain on morale and productivity. It can actually cost you up to 30% of the first year’s potential earnings, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. That’s why it’s so important to avoid missteps in the first place. To help you in the process, here are some common pitfalls that can lead to hiring mistakes:

1. Vague details.

When it comes to the job description, it’s important to have a clear-cut sense of the duties and responsibilities. Not only that, but it’s also important to have a good understanding of the type of person who will be successful in the role. How many years of experience should they have? What skills and competencies are essential? Before you start searching for the perfect candidate, it’s vital to have these details ironed out first.

2. Skipping steps in the process.

From the phone screen to reference and background checks, every step of the process has a purpose. And if you skip steps during it, then you’re putting yourself at risk. So though it might take some extra time to perform phone screens and call references, it will produce better results in the form of higher quality candidates.

3. Not asking behavioral interview questions.

It’s important to ask the basics in an interview, including “why do you want to work here?” and “what do you know about the position?” But if you want to truly gauge a candidate’s skill level, it’s important to dig deeper with behavioral interview questions. This means asking candidates to give you specific examples of their behaviors, abilities and past accomplishments. When you do, you’ll get a much clearer picture of whether the candidate is right for the role.

4. Not evaluating for cultural fit.

Just because a candidate has the right skills and abilities doesn’t mean they’re a good fit for the job. Keep in mind, you’re hiring the whole person, not simply their hard skills. That’s why it’s so important to check for cultural fit. To do so, ask questions about the environment a candidate most likes working in and talk about what your company’s culture is like. A mismatch between culture and personality, on the other hand, will lead to disengagement and turnover.

5. Going it alone.

In today’s competitive marketplace, hiring the right people can be tough. That’s why it’s important to have a staffing partner that knows where to find talented, hard-working professionals. They can also reduce your time to hire, while improving the quality of those you do bring on board.

If you’re ready to outsource your hiring process to professionals, give Murray Resources a call.

As one of Houston’s top staffing experts, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Deal with a Job Candidate Who Lies

April 25th, 2017

You might think that resume or interview lies are few and far between. But according to Career Builder, 58% of hiring managers say they’ve caught a lie on a resume. Some of the most common areas that candidates lie about include:

  • Dates of past employment – making it seem like they were at a company longer than they really were.
  • Educational or career credentials – listing a college diploma when they didn’t graduate.
  • Salary history – inflating their most recent one in the hopes of getting a higher offer.
  • Job title – exaggerating past ones, such as adding “senior.”
  • Claiming credit – making it seem like they solely achieved something while it was really a team effort.

So if this just happened to you, you’re certainly not alone. Once you get over your shock and disappointment, how can you deal with the situation?

If the lie was a big one, then you can just put their resume in the recycling bin and move onto the next candidate. After all, if someone isn’t going to be honest during the hiring process, they certainly won’t be once on the job.

If, however, you’re not completely sure the candidate lied – and there seems to be a discrepancy – ask the candidate about it. If they’re honest, then they’ll have a good explanation or it simply could have been an error on their part.

If you’re not satisfied with their answer, though, then cut them loose. The last thing you need is to hire someone and be constantly questioning whether they’re being straightforward with you or not. Moving forward, make sure you:

  • Flag any possible falsifications or inconsistent details when reviewing candidates. Then question the candidate about them during the phone screen.
  • If it’s a question about skills or abilities, perform a skills test to verify the knowledge the candidate claims to have.
  • To check credentials, ask for official proof and documentation, for instance transcripts from college.
  • Also, don’t skip the all-important step of checking references. This is your opportunity to verify that what the candidate has told you about their skills and abilities, as well as their past positions, is really true.

Don’t have the time or resources to devote to hiring, and reference and background checks?

Call in the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from sourcing and screening to hiring and retaining top talent. Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

6 Ways to Improve Your Corporate Career Website

March 28th, 2017

People are your most important asset and at the core of what you do. And yet, your biggest recruiting tool for them – your career website – hasn’t been updated in 10 years beyond new job postings. Sound familiar? If it does, there’s good news. Simply follow these tips for improving your career website and putting it back to work for you:

#1: Don’t hide job postings.

As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows when a candidate goes to your career website, it’s most likely to look for job openings. Don’t make it hard for them to find listings. Put jobs front and center, not hidden under About Us or some other section. A good rule of thumb is that job seekers should be able to find your openings with one click.

#2: Use your career website to build a talent pipeline.

Your career website isn’t just a medium for broadcasting job openings. It’s also a tool you can put to use to build up a talent pipeline. That means if a job candidate doesn’t find an opening that’s a good fit, provide them with an option to submit their resume and a cover letter anyway. That way, you can create a bank of talent you can tap into as positions open up within your company.

#3: Make your site dynamic.

Beyond simply explaining your company’s corporate vision and mission, infuse some personality into your career site. Add a blog authored by employees with a focus on workplace culture. Upload videos that demonstrate your company’s innovation in the industry. And populate the site with images that give candidates a sense of what it’s really like to work at your company.

#4: Make it mobile friendly.

With many job candidates using their phones and tablets to search for openings, it’s vital that your site is mobile friendly. If it’s not, then you could be missing out on your next great hire.

#5: Add social sharing buttons.

Throughout your site – on job listings, videos and blog posts – add social and email sharing buttons so that candidates can spread the word about your company. Not only that, but these buttons make it easy for existing employees to share and refer their own network to job openings.

#6: Simplify your online application process.

If you have an online application system – versus just having candidates submit their resume via email or uploading it to the site – make sure it’s easy to use. You’re going to lose out on the best candidates if the system is long and convoluted, or if you make candidates register before they can apply.

Have a career website in place, but don’t have time to manage the screening, interviewing, and vetting?

If that’s the case, call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, organizations all over the city rely on us for help with the hiring process, from start to finish. And we can help you too! Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

Considering Hiring a Staffing Agency in Houston? Ask These Questions First

January 17th, 2017

You know the benefits of working with a Houston staffing agency. But, with more than 6,000 across the country – and dozens in Houston alone, it can be hard to find one that’s right for you. If you’re interested in a partnership, but don’t quite know where to start, here are some questions to ask to ensure you hire the right staffing agency:

What can I expect from the relationship?

You might think that all staffing agencies are the same. While it’s true the end goal might be similar – to recruit the best talent – how they get there isn’t identical. So if you’re researching agencies, make sure the one you choose comes to your location to get a feel for your corporate culture, meets with hiring managers across departments, and takes the time to learn about your hiring needs and challenges. Look for an agency that views the relationship as a strategic partnership, not simply as a way to fill empty seats.

What kind of experience do you have?

How long has the agency been around? What kinds of companies do they work with? Who specifically will be working on your account and how long have they been recruiting for? It’s important to ask these kinds of questions to ensure the staffing agency you do choose can back up their claims with proven experience.

How do you screen candidates?

When it comes to recruiting and screening candidates, it should be all about quality. That’s why you need to ask about the specific steps a potential staffing partner takes in screening and vetting candidates. You need a company you can trust to focus on high quality, not just on sending the most candidates your way. Also, ask about background and reference checks and make sure the staffing agency you work with offers them.

What services do you offer?

If you have a range of staffing needs, make sure the agency you choose has the services to meet them. For instance, if you need temporary employees, as well as full-time ones in a variety of positions, you should be able to rely on the same staffing partner to fulfill those needs.

What are your rates?

It’s important to ensure you’re on the same page in terms of the costs. So ask each agency what they charge and how they structure their fees prior to signing an agreement.

Interested in partnering with an experienced staffing agency in Houston? Call Murray Resources. For more than 30 years, we’ve been helping companies in the area source, recruit and screen top quality candidates – and we can help you too. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Hiring More Employees in 2017

January 3rd, 2017

It’s a New Year – and that might mean you have to add to your team. But how can you be sure that hiring more staff is really the right move? As a leading temp services provider in Houston, Texas, Murray Resources knows that either way, it’s a big decision to make. Here are 4 questions to ask yourself to help you determine whether or not to bring more people on board in 2017:

#1: Do you have enough cash flow to pay for new hires?

You might be anticipating an uptick in orders. But if you’re hiring in advance of sales, you could end up with a strained cash flow if those orders don’t come in as planned. When you hire, you need to ensure your sales and revenue can support a new employee. If they can’t, but you truly need the extra help – so you can devote more time to selling – consider bringing in temporary or contract workers.

#2: Are you prepared for all the costs of hiring?

When you hire a new employee, it’s going to cost your company more than the salary you pay them. For instance, there’s payroll tax, health insurance, and HR laws you have to comply with when bringing new people on board. That’s why, before you make a decision, you have to ensure you’re prepared to handle both the financial and practical implications of new full-time employees.

#3: Can you tap into outside help?

You might find that it makes more sense to outsource business processes to a third party company, rather than hiring people in-house to perform certain functions – such as staffing and HR, accounting, and IT. That way, your company can remain more flexible, while still being able to respond to market demands. It can also free up your core staff to focus on other priorities.

#4: What are the costs of not hiring?

In other words, could you miss out on a lucrative opportunity or impair your business in some way if you don’t bring on more staff? Are existing employees going to be spread too thin and fall behind as a result? Will the quality of your service drop if you don’t hire more people? While it’s vital to consider the short- and long-term costs of hiring more employees, it’s also important to think about what can happen if you don’t hire more people.

If your cost benefit analysis is telling you that now’s not the time to hire more full-time people, but you need to add to your team to stay ahead of the competition, consider the use of temporary staffing. That way, you can hire people on a per project basis, or for a short-term period to get an important task off your plate, all without adding to your permanent overhead.

Interested in learning more about how your business can benefit from temporary staffing? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As a leading temp services provider in Houston, Texas, we can give you fast access to the skilled, qualified, and dependable temporary employees you need for a variety of positions. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Pick the Best Temp Services in Houston, Texas

December 20th, 2016

Whether your company operates in oil and gas, or IT, you need people with strong skills and a strong work ethic to ensure it runs smoothly. But with fluctuating demands, it can be hard to stay optimally staffed at all times.

Enter temporary staffing services.

Temp staffing services in Houston, Texas can give you fast access to a rich network of talented and skilled professionals – where and when you need them, whether on a temporary, contract, part-time or full-time basis. The question is: How do you find one that’s right for you? Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you make a move:

What are my needs?

Make sure you have a full understanding of what your staffing needs are. Do you need access to a full team of temporary workers during specific peak periods? Do you need a contractor on a per project basis? Do you have full-time hiring needs, as well? Some temp staffing services in Houston, Texas – like Murray Resources – have the experienced recruiters and proven processes to meet all those needs and more.

Who should I consider?

Not all staffing services firms are created equal. And you want to work with one that not only has the right skills and experience, but the right service team to meet your needs. The best way to find great options is to ask for referrals from your business contacts. They will be able to give you the real scoop on what it’s like to work with a particular firm so you can ensure they’re the right fit for you.

What can each one offer me?

When you’re interviewing options, make sure you ask questions about their candidate database, how they recruit and attract strong applicants, and how they evaluate them. Do they conduct skills testing? What about reference and background checks, as well as drug testing? And what happens if you’re not satisfied with a particular candidate? You need to know the ins and outs of each temp services firm before you make a decision on one.

How did they treat me?

Beyond services and guarantees, it’s also important to assess how you were treated in your talks with each firm. Were they knowledgeable and responsive? Did you feel respected and well taken care of? Or were they rude and abrasive? A firm can look like an ideal match for you on paper, but it’s important to ensure they will truly work hard to meet your expectations.

The good news is that with the right temp services firm, you’ll have a valuable partner in place who can help your business grow. If you’re interested in learning more about how your Houston, Texas company can benefit from temp services, contact Murray Resources today.

Posted in: Blog

How to Hire the Best Temporary Workers During the Holidays

December 6th, 2016

The holidays are here – and if your business is like many, it’s a hectic time. You have an increase in demand and projects that need to be wrapped up before year’s end, while employees are requesting vacation time off. It’s certainly a balancing act, one made easier with the help of temporary workers. To help ensure you hire the best ones – and can get the most from them – here are a few rules to keep in mind:

Rule #1: Get referrals from employees.

As a leading provider of temp services in Houston, Texas, Murray Resources knows the best temporary workers will come from employee referrals. Not only can referrals give you a quick source of talent, but it’s also a great way to find candidates who will likely be a better cultural and performance fit. After all, who knows better what it takes to succeed at your company than existing staff members? You can even consider rewarding your employees for successful referrals through bonuses or other incentives.

Rule #2: Take time to interview each candidate.

Don’t hire temporary workers on the fly. Take the time to properly screen and interview candidates to ensure the person you hire is the best fit. Keep in mind, too, you need people who can get up and running quickly. You don’t have the luxury of weeks of training and onboarding like you do with full-time employees. That means, during the interview, you have to ask good questions so you can rest easy that you’re hiring those who can truly thrive. Some questions include:

  • Tell me about your related experience.
  • Give me an example of how you handled a difficult customer in the past.
  • What makes you a great fit for this job?
  • Why do you want this job?

Rule #3: Look for a positive attitude.

A positive attitude can make a huge difference when you’re hiring workers. Someone who’s happy to show up at work and driven to deliver will infuse energy into your workplace. On the other hand, someone who’s bored or unenthusiastic will do barely enough to get by. So look for those candidates who seem excited about the opportunity.

Rule #4: Undercut the competition.

If your competitors are offering a certain hourly wage for temporary workers, offer a dollar or two more, if you can. The extra money will be well worth it in the form of better temporary workers and higher productivity.

Rule #5: Partner with a temporary staffing agency.

As a leading provider of temp services in Houston, Texas, we know hiring temporary or contract workers can sometimes be a struggle. But we’re here to help. We have the expertise, proven processes, and network of candidates to help ensure you have the right people, in the right place, at the right time. We can do all the legwork and minimize hiring missteps and risks, all so you get the skilled, dependable, enthusiastic people you need.

If you need help hiring temporary workers for your company during the holidays – or any time of year, call us today. We can help.

Posted in: Blog

5 Signs an Employee is Job Searching

November 15th, 2016

Your employees’ days may be numbered. Just consider a few of these recent statistics: 51% of U.S adults are regularly searching for new jobs, even though they’re currently employed, according to Gallup. Indeed put that number closer to 58%. Either way you look at it, that’s still potentially half of your employees who could be looking for new jobs…today, right now. So how can you tell for sure if an employee has one foot out the door? Here are a few signs:

#1: They’re not motivated.

An employee used to be engaged and excited. They got involved in heated discussions and debates and always showed great initiative. Now they’re doing just enough to get by. They’ve lost that inner drive and they don’t seem happy at work.

#2: They’re taking a lot of sick days.

When you have an employee on staff for a long time, you get a general sense of their attendance. So when an employee starts taking a lot of half days off, or full sick days, it could be a sign they’re interviewing with another company.

#3: They’re not as productive.

As Houston staffing experts, Murray Resources knows a decline in productivity is a clear sign that an employee has lost focus. It could be an indication they have something going on at home – or that they’ve started a job search. When an employee is looking for a new position, or has already found another one and just hasn’t informed you yet, then they might not be putting in as much effort as you’re used to.

#4: They’re updating their LinkedIn profile.

You’re connected on LinkedIn and all of a sudden, you’ve noticed regular updates to an employee’s profile. For instance, they’re adding new skills and accomplishments, along with a portfolio of their work. It could be that they’re polishing it for potential employers.

#5: They come into the office dressed up.

When your culture is casual or business casual, and an employee shows up wearing a business suit for no apparent reason, it could be a sign they’re interviewing. This is even more likely true if they’re taking long lunches, leaving early, or arriving late to the office.

Now you know the signs. But what should you do?

If your employee is already job searching, then it might be too late. However, it’s still worth having a conversation if it’s someone you truly want to retain. During your conversation do more listening then talking to try and get to the bottom of their behavior. It may be due to an issue that you can help overcome, like more flex hours or training and support. Or, you may determine that it is, in fact, time to part ways. Either way, you should gain insight as to how to strengthen your company culture and boost retention in the future.

Do you need more help hiring and retaining top people for your team? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As Houston’s top staffing experts, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog

5 Biggest Hiring Regrets Managers Have

October 18th, 2016

Have you ever made a big hiring mistake? As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows if you’re like most experienced managers, the answer is “yes.” And you’re certainly not alone. In fact, according to one study by CEB Global, hiring managers admitted that 20% of their employees shouldn’t have been hired in the first place. That’s one in five new hires! That’s also a lot of time and money wasted.

So how can you avoid making expensive hiring mistakes? Start by avoiding these 5 regrets:

1. Not checking references.

Just because the candidate is your best friend’s cousin doesn’t mean you should skip the reference checking process. This is your chance to ensure everything they told you aligns with reality. It’s also an opportunity to gain deeper insight into their background, skills and results. It’s a step you don’t want to miss out on.

2. Not checking skills.

For positions where skill checking or employment testing is appropriate, do it. You won’t regret it. Plus there are literally hundreds of different types of tests available online that don’t cost a lot. Requiring these kinds of tests will not only help ensure you hire the best person for the position, but it will also give you more peace of mind about your decision and the process.

3. Not evaluating attitude.

Sure, the person you hire needs the right technical skills to do the job. But don’t focus solely on hard skills and forget to evaluate soft ones. These includes skills such as communication, collaboration, conflict resolution and organizational abilities. Even when a candidate has the strongest skills, they won’t thrive at your organization of they don’t have the right personality and attitude.

4. Letting personal biases get in the way.

Maybe the candidate is from the same hometown as you, or they went to the same college. This can make you feel more of affinity for them then you typically would. But don’t let these personal feelings get in the way of your hiring decisions. Remember, you need to hire the person who’s the strongest fit and most likely to succeed; not the one you like best.

5. Not going with your gut.

Something a candidate’s reference said caught you off-guard. Or a candidate said all the right things, but their body language communicated a different message. Whatever the case, your gut is telling you not to hire this person. Don’t ignore the warning bells. Reach out to others on the hiring committee and talk to them about your reservations before making a move. Perhaps there’s a good explanation, or maybe the candidate just isn’t the right fit for you.

Would you like expert help avoiding hiring mistakes in the future? Call Murray Resources. As one of the top staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources has worked with Houston’s leading organizations since 1988 to identify their human resource needs, locate top talent, and maximize employee productivity. Contact us today to learn more and find out how we can help you.

Posted in: Blog

3 Quick Tips for Finding the Best Houston Staffing Agency

October 4th, 2016

In the past, companies turned to Houston staffing agencies to fill administrative and light industrial roles. Today, though, those same agencies are filling positions ranging from IT and engineering to accounting, legal, healthcare and beyond on a full-time, part-time, contract or temporary basis.

So if your company is facing staffing challenges, you may want to consider partnering with a staffing agency. That way, you can hand off to the experts the task of recruiting, screening, interviewing, and reference checking, while you focus on other core business responsibilities. But with so many staffing agencies to choose from, how can you find one that’s right for you?

Here are 3 quick tips to help you:

Do your homework.

You wouldn’t hire an employee without interviewing and checking references. Likewise, don’t hire a staffing agency without doing the same. You want to ensure the firm you partner with has the experience and proven processes in place to help you, as well as a strong reputation in the recruiting field.

So ask your network for referrals and request references from each staffing agency you’re considering. Also, when you’re evaluating various agencies, keep your eyes and ears open. Visit their offices, assess how you’re treated on the phone when you call, and ask questions that help ensure they’re a good fit for you.

Make sure candidates don’t pay.

Most reputable staffing agencies require the employer pays the fee for the hiring process, not the candidate. Why does this matter? Because if a candidate is required to pay for staffing services, then the top talent is likely going to look elsewhere. After all, who would want to pay in order to apply for jobs? Working with such an agency can therefore limit your ability to attract the highest quality talent.

Put communication first.

Just like any business relationship, communication is key. If you’re not clear with a staffing agency about your needs, challenges and the role you’re trying to fill, they’re not going to be able to provide you with the best candidates. So always make communication a priority. If your recruiter reaches out to you with questions or concerns, get back to them with answers in a timely manner. That way, they can do their job efficiently and effectively – which benefits you in the long run.

Interested in learning more about how partnering with a staffing agency can help you? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top staffing agencies, we’re committed to providing the best recruiting services to both companies and job seekers, while delivering the highest quality experience for everyone we work with. Contact us to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Get Full-Time & Temp Employees To Work Together…Seamlessly

September 20th, 2016

There are so many benefits to bringing on temporary workers. They can help you get more done, without adding to your overhead. They can keep you flexible, agile, and staffed at an optimal level year-round. And they can help you avoid expensive overtime and employment costs…while still giving you access to the right-size workforce.

But, as a leading Houston temporary staffing agency, Murray Resources knows that one stumbling block that you might come across is with your current staff. In some cases, not everyone will be as welcoming as you’d like. And this can impact morale and productivity. So how can you prepare your core staff, so they can work effectively hand-in-hand with your temporaries?

Here are three tips:

The Why: Be clear about why you’re bringing temporary workers on board.

With layoffs and downsizing the norm in today’s economy, it’s no wonder your employees are worried when you bring temporaries on board. It’s up to you to play up the benefits and explain why it’s necessary. Be clear about your reasons – such as the ability to take on a lucrative new client or project – so they can stop wondering about job security.

The What: Talk about what role the temporary workers will fulfill.

Before your temporary team starts, talk to your existing staff about the work they’ll be doing. Keep in mind, if your staff understands the situation, then they’re likely going to be more comfortable with it. At this point, you can ask whether there are any questions and talk about issues or concerns they may have. This way you can diffuse any awkward situations before they start.

The Who: Connect each temporary worker to a buddy on your team.

When you assign a full-time employee to a temporary worker, you are essentially giving your temps a lifeline to fast answers and information…without having to come to you. Both temporaries and full-time workers will also have a chance to get to know each other better. In addition, assigning a buddy will help your temporary team members get situated faster and up and running quicker – which will benefit your company in the long run.

Do you need temporary employees for a big project or to cover an employee on leave? Call Murray Resources. As a leading Houston temporary staffing agency, our extensive database of over 8,000 candidates allows us to identity proven performers who can step in and make an immediate contribution to your growth and productivity goals. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

5 Secrets to Hiring Great Temp Employees

August 16th, 2016

Permanent is better than temporary, right? Not so for the millions of companies looking to ramp up their temporary hiring efforts. They, like you, know that temp workers can offer some very real benefits – along with a competitive advantage.

But, just like your full-time positions, you can’t just hire anyone for your temporary job openings. You need to ensure you bring the right people on board from the start. How can you do that?

Here are the 5 secrets you need to help you succeed:

#1: Create great job descriptions.

You need skilled, reliable workers. But, as a provider of temp services in the Houston, Texas area, Murray Resources knows if your job descriptions are vague, too long, or poorly worded, you’re not going to attract the best applicants.

Instead, you need to make sure your descriptions are short, sweet and crystal clear. Also, for the sake of brevity, avoid any descriptions or language that a temporary worker doesn’t really need to know.

#2: Start small.

Before you bring on a team of 10 temporary workers for a mission critical project, start off smaller. Bring on a couple workers for a specific project and see how it works out. That way, you can assess their skills and abilities – as well as your need for them – without having a huge impact on your company if it doesn’t work out.

#3: Break the ice with employees.

One of the biggest obstacles to temporary hiring can be your full-time staff. If you bring in temp workers, they may feel threatened and worry that their job security is in jeopardy.

That’s why it’s important to talk with your people ahead of time to explain why you’re bringing in temporary workers and what you expect from your full-time staff (a welcoming attitude, cooperation, etc.) during the process.

#4: Make sure you’re protected.

If you’re not working with a temp staffing service in Houston – one who would handle all the legal documents and paperwork for you – then you need to ensure you have a contract in place with any workers before you bring them on board.

Your contract should include the scope of the work you’re going to have them do, agreed upon start and end dates, payment, and how they’ll be paid. Before you have them sign anything, be sure to consult with your business attorney to ensure key points are covered.

#5: Partner with a temp staffing service.

That said, it’s much easier to partner with a staffing service right here in Houston, Texas, when you want to bring temporary workers on board – especially if it’s on a regular basis. They can handle all the recruiting, screening, interviewing, testing and training – so you can focus on running your business.

Interested in learning more about how a temp staffing agency can help you? Call Murray Resources. As a provider of temp services to Houston, Texas businesses, our extensive database of over 8,000 candidates allows us to identity proven performers who can step in and make an immediate contribution to your growth and productivity goals. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Responses to Off The Wall Interview Questions

August 4th, 2016

We’ve all heard stories about interview questions ranging from the mundane (“What do you know about our company?”) to the ridiculous (“Tell me five things you can do with a pencil besides write or erase”). And as one of the leading placement firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources has seen our fair share of off the wall interview questions.

(For the most part) Interviewers don’t ask these questions for their own amusement. They’re trying to get to the heart of who you are and if – and how well – you might fit into their organization. Some questions are simply to understand how you deal with unexpected situations. Almost all jobs require the ability to think on your feet and to act when you don’t have all the information you would like. An atypical interview question might help the interview understand how you may react in such a situation.

Some examples…

Antonella Pisani, a former executive with JCPenney and the founder and CEO of Official Coupon Code, likes to ask  ‘What’s a common misconception about you?’”

This question allows you, the interviewee, to explain yourself and it also demonstrates your level of self-awareness. For example, if you understand that you come off to people you first meet in a certain way, it’s a great opportunity to clarify your true nature.

Just bear in mind that you want to reinforce the reasons why you’re a great fit for the role, so if you’re applying for a role that requires significant social interaction and / or networking, you probably don’t want to go with an answer like “I come off as stern, but I’m really just a quiet person.”

Gene Caballero, co-founder of GreenPal, says his best interview question is, “Tell me something you’re passionate about.” Caballero isn’t looking for a stock or “perfect” answer; rather, he’s looking for a genuine response, “whether it’s [the candidate’s] Sunday night bowling league or his son’s Boy Scout group.”

Caballero’s approach with this question focuses on you, the person, rather than specifically on the professional you. You’ll still want to give an appropriate and professional response, and we always recommend tying your answer to the job, whenever possible. If you have volunteer experience that relates to the job, that would be the perfect opportunity to mention it.

Marsha Murray, president of Murray Resources, likes to ask, “If I could create the perfect career opportunity for you what would it look like?” Marsha uses that question to make sure the person is committed to the position they’re interviewing for.

Another question Marsha asks is, “Everyone in their life has personal adversity and challenges. Give me an example of an adversity you’ve been faced with and how you overcame that.” Marsha explains, “With this question I’m looking for someone who faces adversity and challenges head on. I’m looking more for an attitude. How they look at it, relate to it and changed their life as a result.”

“Of all the positions you’ve had, what is your favorite and why?” Marsha likes to ask this question because in her firm, culture is critical to success and you’ve got to be sure you’re making a good fit.

So how do you prepare for non-traditional questions – or can you? Believe it or not, you can. Ask a friend to come up with 2-3 off the wall interview questions and then practice giving your answers. Like anything else, once you’ve practiced, the actual game (the interview) will seem much easier. You’ll be amazed by how well you can respond to even the most out of the box questions.

The bottom line is that sometimes it’s hard to know what to expect in interviews, but it all boils down to a few basic tenets: be honest, be professional, and be yourself. Oh, and what are five things you can do with a pencil besides write and erase? The interviewer is looking for creativity more than the right answer. So get creative and you’ll do fine!

 

Posted in: Blog

4 Signs It’s Time to Fire an Employee

August 2nd, 2016

As one of the leading placement firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that not every person is a good fit with your company. Sometimes you don’t realize it until after they’ve been working with you for a period of time.

While firing an employee is never fun, keeping someone on staff who isn’t contributing positively can seriously hurt your bottom line. So if an employee is demonstrating the following signs, it’s time to say good-bye.

Sign #1: Not meeting expectations after repeated warnings.

Sometimes when an employee isn’t performing well, it’s due to a miscommunication, a lack of training, or unclear expectations. However, when you’ve communicated your expectations, set clear goals and repeatedly provided training opportunities – and the employee is still underperforming – then it’s clear they’re not a fit for the role they’re in. Not only is this situation wasting time and money, but it’s also causing tension within your company.

Sign #2: Inability to handle change.

Times are changing fast – and when an employee can’t or won’t do what it takes to keep up, it’s going to slow your company down. To stay competitive, your organization needs to be continuously improving and evolving – as do your employees. If an employee isn’t comfortable with change or improving their abilities, then it may be time to move on.

Sign #3: Zero drive or enthusiasm.

When an employee first gets hired, they’re full of excitement and enthusiasm about the opportunities that lie ahead. As time goes on, those who aren’t committed to the company’s values and mission can easily lose their drive. While this might be a temporary situation due to a challenging project or a difficult client, it becomes a big problem when it’s an ongoing issue.

Sign #4: A lack of cultural fit.

Oftentimes during the hiring process, companies focus on the hard skills of each candidate they interview. However, the soft skills – the ones that will determine whether or not a candidate will blend with the culture – are just as important. And if you’ve got someone on staff who isn’t a fit culturally speaking, then it will become clear very quickly. The faster you cut ties, the better.

Firing an employee can be a difficult prospect. However, keeping someone on staff who isn’t doing a good job, or isn’t the right fit, can cause serious damage to their career and your company in the long run.

Do you need help finding great candidates – ones who are the right fit – for your job openings? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading placement firms in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from sourcing and screening to hiring and retaining the best people for your positions. Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

Hiring Temps? Make Sure You Ask These Interview Questions

July 19th, 2016

Temporary staffing is on the rise in companies across the country, as well as right here in Houston. In fact, the number of jobs in the temporary help services industry reached an all-time high of 2.9 million in May 2015, accounting for 2.4% of all private sector jobs in the U.S. That’s according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

If your business is one of the many hiring on a temporary basis, how do you go about finding the best candidates?

Just like you would for a full-time, permanent employee, it’s important you properly vet each person you’re considering. Keep in mind, a customer isn’t going to care if someone was full-time or temporary if they aren’t treated well. As one of Houston’s top temporary staffing agencies, Murray Resources knows part of finding the right temporary workers includes asking the right questions during the interview process.

To help you make the best temp hiring decisions, here are several questions to ask in the interview:

Can you tell me why you want to work in a temporary job? Are you looking for a long-term or short-term assignment? If a full-time job opened up, would you be interested in applying?

Why ask: These questions are important to ask because they help you gauge the candidate’s career goals – and whether they align with your needs. For instance, say your company is increasing a big increase in sales and subsequent orders. But you’re not sure you can sustain it, so you want to bring in temporary workers to handle the demand without increasing overhead. It’s important to hire those who may be interested in full-time work should it become available. Asking these kinds of questions can give you a better sense of whether the candidate is open to such an opportunity.

What hours would you like to work? Are there certain days of the week you can’t work? Are you able to work different shifts?

Why ask: A candidate may have all the skills you need. But if they can’t work around your schedule and be available when you need them to be, then it’s a no-win situation. It’s important, instead, to find those candidates who can meet your scheduling needs and who can also be flexible should those needs change.

Tell me about a time when you had to adjust to a new workplace situation.

Why ask: When it comes to temporary work, a lot of adjustment is involved. Every time a worker starts a new assignment, it’s with a different company, a different culture and a different set of rules. That’s why, to be successful, a temporary worker has to be able to quickly assimilate.

If I called your last boss, what would they say about you?

Why ask: You’re likely going to call references and asking this question gives you the chance to see if what a candidate tells you matches the information the references give.

Just because you’re hiring a worker on a temporary basis doesn’t mean you shouldn’t thoroughly interview each candidate you’re considering. The questions above are a good place to start – so you can make the best hiring decision.

Do you need expert help hiring temp workers – and taking your company to the next level? Call the team at Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top temporary staffing agencies, our extensive database of over 8,000 candidates allows us to identity proven performers who can step in and make an immediate contribution to our clients’ growth and productivity goals. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Difficult Star Performers – Work With Them or Let Them Go?

July 12th, 2016

Most leaders face this dilemma at some point in time: they have a star performer who’s smashing goals, and on paper they’re clear keepers. But in person they’re disruptive or entitled…or maybe even a jerk.

To keep or not to keep?

Is it better to retain, and work with these disruptive star-performers – or are we and our companies better served wishing them well and letting them go? The answer to this may not be as simple as you’d think. Companies need to make money to survive and grow, so keeping the rainmakers may mean they sometimes have to overlook a little bad behavior. It can often boil down to what a company or manager is willing to accept and how far they’ll let certain behaviors go.

It depends…

Marc Prosser, Co-Founder at Fit Small Business asks himself this question when faced with this dilemma: “Should the rules be rewritten to accommodate one person?” To Prosser, the answer “really depends on the situation.”

Prosser’s biggest concern is ensuring that accommodating one individual won’t affect his company’s ability to manage others. He continues, “We don’t want to create a double standard that will cause animosity. We also don’t want to accommodate a jerk, which is different from star performer.”

Ultimately, your employee may be a star performer with a few bad behaviors, and you may be okay with that. But if they get to a point where they are a liability – legally or otherwise – it may be time to reevaluate the need for them.

Let them go…
Sometimes, even after you run the numbers, it’s more valuable to your team and your company as a whole to let high achievers with bad attitudes go. For Ian Wright, founder of British Business Energy, an energy comparison service, “it’s often best to let star performers go rather than bending over backwards to accommodate them.” From Wright’s experience, letting his star go ended up improving the morale of remaining employees and, in turn, they began performing better and bringing in more business. It was a win-win for Wright. He was able to keep bringing in a lot of sales while also retaining an effective and happier sales team.

But I don’t want to say good-bye
Max Robinson of Aims Glasgow Media
has found a way to have his star performer but keep peace in the office, too. “Rather than forcing them to stick to our rules, I’ll generally deal with them on a freelance basis.” Robinson provides the ‘talented-but-hard-to-work-with’ stars with a company phone and allows them to work remotely. This is a viable option if your company is open to working with a team member on a freelance or contract basis.

Sometimes the benefit of a star performer’s skills far outweigh the hassle of putting up with them. And sometimes bad behaviors are non-negotiable. As a manager, only you can decide how much you’ll put up with and how much bad behavior is acceptable within the policies of the company.

Need to find your next Superstar – who doesn’t behave badly? Murray Resources can help. As one of Houston’s top staffing agencies, we can connect you with the best talent in the market. Contact us today to get started or learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Signs It’s Time to Hire a Temporary Agency

July 5th, 2016

There are a lot of myths out there about working with temporary agencies. Many companies think all they do is fill empty seats with admin or light industrial workers. But really, the right temp agency can provide your Houston company with a strategic staffing partner – one that can ensure your business is optimally staffed at all times.

Still not convinced? Here are 4 signs you need to hire a temporary agency now – and how you can benefit from the relationship:

#1: You regularly require more people in a hurry.

You need extra hands on deck now. The trouble is, you’re not sure you can sustain demand for long. Or you don’t know where to look to find and hire five to 10 people with the skills and experience you need for a short-term assignment.

Whether for a big project or a seasonal uptick in business, temporary staffing is the perfect solution to access the people you need, only for as long as you need them. As a result, you don’t have to worry about being understaffed during a critical time. In addition, your core staff doesn’t get overworked, even when you have more work then they can handle.

#2: You require more flexibility.

Temporary agencies are a great way to give your Houston company more flexibility. You can bring in workers where and when you need them – for a week, a month, or longer. They don’t add to your fixed overhead, but they do enable you to take on new initiatives and more work. Temp workers are also ideal if you have an employee going on leave for an extended period of time, such as maternity or sick leave.

#3: There’s uncertainty in your company or industry.

Is your company dealing with market fluctuations or some other kind of uncertainty? Perhaps it’s not the best time to make full-time hiring decisions. That said, you still need to complete projects and get orders out the door. Working with a temporary agency in Houston can help your company get the manpower it needs, without having to make any potentially costly full-time hiring decisions.

#4: You’re trying to cut costs.

Employees are expensive, especially if they work a lot of overtime. However, you can manage overtime expenses by hiring temporary employees, who are often less expensive hour-to-hour than paying full-time employees time and a half. Even better, the temporary agency you work with handles other costs, such as benefits, unemployment and workers’ compensation insurance.

Need more people but don’t have the budget to hire full time? Murray Resources can help. As one of Houston’s top temporary agencies, we can connect you with the skilled and dependable workers you need across a variety of positions on a part-time, hourly, seasonal, contract, or full time basis. Contact us today to get started or learn more.

Posted in: Blog

4 Steps to Creating Effective One-on-Ones With Your Staff

June 7th, 2016

You know you should be spending one-on-one time with each staff member to ensure they’re on track. The trouble is, your schedule is already filled and you don’t see it clearing up anytime soon.

It’s true these meetings can be time-consuming. But as one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows if you don’t check in periodically with your people, you’ll miss out on an opportunity to provide timely feedback, while also motivating and encouraging them. To help you conduct effective one-on-ones with your staff, here are 4 steps to follow:

#1: Create a schedule…and stick to it.

Don’t expect to conduct meetings on the fly. Something will always get in the way. Instead, create a schedule for your one-on-ones and stick to it. You can create a weekly schedule, or a monthly or quarterly one – whatever works for you. Just put it on the schedule so both you and your employee can prepare for it. If you don’t, or if you regularly cancel, your employee won’t take the process seriously.

#2: Create a loose agenda.

There might be certain issues you want to bring up during a meeting. Make sure you create a loose agenda so you don’t forget about these important points. However, also schedule in time for you and your employee to speak freely. Remember, this isn’t a one-way conversation; your employees should feel comfortable bringing up their own issues, concerns and ideas.

#3: Create a distraction-free zone.

Don’t schedule a meeting, but then check your phone or email every five minutes. Or leave your door open so anyone can interrupt. It’s distracting to your employee and also rude. Instead, be mentally present so you can spend the time necessary with each employee and demonstrate your commitment to them. When you’re not distracted, you and your employee will both get more out of each meeting.

#4: Create a plan of action.

Before you wrap up the meeting, talk about next steps. For the best results, you should also follow up with your employee via email restating these action steps. That way, everyone is on the same page and clear about what they’re supposed to do and by when.

The bottom line? One-on-ones are a great tool for managers. They can help keep your employees engaged, while also demonstrating how much you value them.

Do you need help recruiting and hiring engaged employees for your team? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog

Contractor or Employee? What’s the Difference – and Why It Matters

April 19th, 2016

You know you need to hire. But should you bring a contractor or employee on board? As leading Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows there are pros and cons to both.

For instance, with a contractor, you can save on labor costs and overhead, reduce your liability as an employer, and enjoy more flexibility. In fact, according to some reports, companies can save as much as 30% by avoiding payroll taxes, unemployment insurance, worker’s compensation coverage, and benefits normally provided to full-time employees.

On the other hand, sometimes you need a long-term solution and a regular, full-time employee is the answer. Employees are also likely going to be more loyal to your company than a contractor, helping you to achieve and sustain long-term business objectives.

Regardless of what you do decide, it’s important to ensure that you’re classifying these workers correctly – or you can end up in legal hot water.

Misclassification of an employee as a contractor can lead to costly back taxes (income, Social Security and Medicare) along with penalties. In addition, you might also have to reimburse them for the wages that should have been paid to them under the Fair Labor Standards Act, such as overtime and minimum wage.

It’s much easier to classify employees and contractors correctly from the start. And it doesn’t matter what your contract or written agreement with a worker says. Even if you both agree on the terms of the relationship, a worker’s status as an independent contractor rather than an employee is actually determined by several other factors.

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, here’s a look at them:

An Independent Contractor:
• Operates under a business name
• Has his/her own employees
• Maintains a separate business checking account
• Advertises his/her business’ services
• Invoices for work completed
• Has more than one client
• Has own tools and sets own hours
• Keeps business records

An Employee:
• Performs duties dictated or controlled by others
• Is given training for work to be done
• Works for only one employer

The IRS currently estimates that approximately 15% of U.S. workers aren’t classified correctly. And, more and more, they’re conducting surprise audits to go after companies for misclassification. It’s up to you to ensure you’re on firm legal ground and properly classify and document each and every person who works for you – whether on a full-time or contract basis.

Do you need help hiring contractors and employees – and ensuring you’re classifying them correctly? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As leading Houston recruiters, we can take the hassle out of hiring  – all so you can focus on other priorities while still gaining access to top quality talent. Contact us today if you’d like to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Collaboration Mistakes Managers Make…& How to Avoid Them

March 15th, 2016

As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that getting your team together to solve a problem or work toward a goal is a powerful solution. In fact, according to research by Queens University of Charlotte in North Carolina, 75% of employees rate team work and collaboration as very important.

However, collaboration isn’t always easy. And if you’re not approaching the process right, you could walk away from a collaboration meeting without a lot to show for it. What are a few mistakes to avoid making? Here’s a look at four:

Mistake #1: People don’t understand their roles.

When you have several people involved in a project, it’s important to know who is responsible for what. Otherwise, when you don’t have clear roles defined, then your people won’t be on the same page, work can get duplicated and communication issues will ensue. Also, with clear roles defined, work is less likely to stagnate and everyone can keep pushing forward toward their individual and group milestones.

Mistake #2: Too much input.

When a team is collaborating, they need the space and time in order to develop the best solutions. However, if you’re constantly trying to tell them how to accomplish team goals, then it’s going to hinder productivity and results. This is a case when some ambiguity is a good for the team. It gets the creative juices flowing and encourages them to invest the time and energy to develop great solutions on their own.

Mistake #3: No goals.

While you don’t want to tell your team how to do the work, you must define clear outcomes from the start. In other words, what is the end goal or goals the team must achieve? If your people don’t have a clearly defined outcome in mind, then they’re going to waste a lot of time spinning their wheels. It’s up to you to start each project and each meting with specific goals in mind to make sure the team is on track toward them.

Mistake #4: Implementing technology all wrong.

There are plenty of apps and programs out there that can help boost team collaboration. However, if you don’t get buy in from your people first and also train them thoroughly on how to use the tool, then it’s going to fall by the wayside. Employees will embrace technology, but only if they see value in it and understand how to use it.

Do you need help hiring your next team player? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire process – from sourcing and screening to hiring and retaining top talent. Contact us today to get started.

 

Posted in: Blog

How Your Houston Company Can Hire Top Employees (Hint: It’s All About Sourcing)

March 1st, 2016

Your interviewing and skills-testing abilities might be top-notch. But if your sourcing process is less-than-stellar, recruiting top people to your team is going to be a challenge. Why? Because if your candidate pool is weak, it will impact your ultimate hiring decision. You need to ensure you’re sourcing the strongest candidates from the start, so you can interview, test and eventually hire the very best. Here’s how:

Consider what the job entails.

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that sourcing the best candidates needs to start with a vision of what the job entails. So ask yourself this: What will a candidate need to do in order to be successful on the job? What are your goals and expectations for them within 90 days and six months of being hired? What will their specific tasks and responsibilities be?

Don’t just rely on what you think you know about the position. Talk the department head, as well as the people who will be working alongside the new hire so you can gain a clear sense of what this person will need to accomplish.

Focus on what makes your job better.

In other words, why should someone want to work for your company? In order for a candidate to want to make a move, you need to offer a compelling pitch. Most traditional job ads only focus on what the employer is looking for. Make yours stand out and advertise what you can offer to the candidate.

Sharpen your marketing skills.

Broadcast this message in your online job posts, as well as when you’re communicating directly with candidates. Make sure they understand not only what they will be doing, but what they also can be learning and becoming if they accept your offer.

Leverage your resume database.

Don’t forget about the resumes you keep on file. When you’re looking for your next great hire, now’s the time to tap into your resume database. You may have the ideal candidate right at your fingertips. Reach out to the strongest contenders with an email describing the opportunity and why they should consider making a move.

Tap into your network.

Candidates aren’t the only ones who should be networking during the job search process. When you’re sourcing potential employees, networking is one of the most effective tools in your arsenal. When someone refers a contact to you, call them immediately to find out whether they’d be open to a discussion.

Do you need more help sourcing and hiring Houston’s top talent? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, companies all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain talent for a variety of positions, ranging from entry level to C-level. Contact us today if you’d like to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

What Day of the Week Should I Fire an Employee?

February 2nd, 2016

You have an employee with serious performance issue. You’ve offered plenty of warnings. You’ve tried to help them get back on track and improve their performance. But the fact of the matter is this: It’s not working out. You know you have to fire them.

So when should you do it?

As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows there are actually a lot of theories surrounding the best day of the week to fire someone. Here’s a look at them:

  • Generally speaking, it’s thought you should terminate an employee in the beginning or middle of the week, later in the day. That gives the employee time to take action to handle their situation, such as filing for unemployment, and submitting their resume to a staffing company or to other job openings.
  • In addition, by waiting until the end of the day, it gives the employee the chance to leave the office at their regular time, so they don’t call attention to the matter. They can even wait until colleagues are gone for the day to pack up their personal items so they don’t have to engage in any uncomfortable conversations.
  • If, however, you fire them at the end of the day on a Friday, they basically have two whole days where their hands are tied. They can’t make any forward progress and all they can do is worry and wait…and potentially get angry.
  • That said, there are some who do believe the end of the day Friday is a good time to fire someone because it gives them the weekend to digest the news and to make a plan for their job search.

In the end, the decision is completely up to you. Nobody likes to be fired. And whether someone is fired on a Monday vs. a Friday won’t make a huge impact on their reaction. They are going to be upset and emotional.

However you do decide to deal with the situation, always be respectful and kind. You’re delivering a major blow here and so it’s important you handle the circumstances very carefully. People may not remember exactly what you said, but they will remember how you made them feel – good or bad.

Also, once you decide to terminate an employee, take action quickly. Don’t let the situation linger on. You’re not only doing your company a disservice, but the employee, as well.

Do you have a job opening you’d like help filling? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from sourcing and screening to hiring and retaining top talent. Contact us today to get started.

Posted in: Blog

5 Steps for Successful Technical Recruiting

January 19th, 2016

If you’re hiring for technical roles, then you know there’s a serious demand for talent. There are far more openings than there are candidates to fill them. However, your company doesn’t need to get lost in the gap. As experienced technical recruiters in Houston, Murray Resources knows you can get – and stay – ahead of your competition by following a few key steps during the recruiting process.

Step #1: Speak their language.

HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, Mysql, CGI, Android, iOs. Technical candidates understand these terms, but do you? If you’re recruiting technical professionals to your company, it’s important to be familiar with these types of terms. In addition, depending on the specific position you’re looking to hire for, it’s vital you know the applications and programs candidates should be versed in. If you can’t speak their language, you can’t effectively recruit and vet candidates.

Step #2: Know what motivates them.

For tech candidates, choosing a position and a company that’s right for them goes beyond the one offering the biggest paycheck. While compensation is clearly important, so are offering perks and benefits that satisfy their values and personal interests. In addition, it’s also important to understand your audience. If you’re targeting and recruiting from a younger generation, then offering flexibility and a healthy work life balance are keys to attracting them.

Step #3: Know where the talent pools are – and dive in.

There are plenty of hot spots for tech talent. For instance, according to an article on the official LinkedIn blog, nearly 1 out of every 3 new residents who moved to San Francisco in 2013 had technology skills. In addition to recruiting in different locales, use a variety of industry specific websites, like Dice.com, to help you recruit tech candidates.

Step #4: Tap your current talent.

The person you need could be right under your nose. When you’re looking to recruit, don’t forget about considering existing staff. When you’re open to promoting from within, you don’t have to work so hard to sell the company and there will be far less of a learning curve for your employee.

Step #5: Move quickly.

While you shouldn’t move so fast you don’t have enough time to thoroughly assess each candidate, you can’t spend months trying to make a decision. Your top pick will be long gone by then. The companies that are recruiting the best talent are also those who are moving quickly.

If you’d like more help finding and hiring the top IT talent, turn to Houston’s IT recruiting experts – Murray Resources. Our Houston technical recruiters are highly experienced at identifying and placing world-class information technology (IT) talent. Our in-depth technical knowledge allows us to pinpoint even the most highly-specialized IT professionals for a wide range of companies and projects throughout Houston. Whether your needs are full-time / direct hire or temporary / contract, we can help. Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

Are You Setting Clear Expectations for Your Staff?

January 5th, 2016

One of your people isn’t getting the job done. They keep missing deadlines. They constantly come to you with questions. Goals are falling by the wayside and work quality is slipping.

Sound familiar? While a weak employee may be the culprit, another possibility is that your staff member is operating on unclear expectations. As a leading Houston staffing agency, Murray Resources knows when your people don’t fully understand what they’re supposed to be doing and when, they’re never going to be able to perform well.

So how can you go about setting crystal clear expectations – so your employees can deliver? Here are some steps to take:

Step #1: Assess the job.

Are the right people in the right roles? Do their job descriptions actually align with their day-to-day tasks and responsibilities? While a job description won’t define every aspect of a job, it does set forth an outline as well as basic expectations. So if you hire someone to perform a certain job, but that position doesn’t match at all what they’re currently doing, then that lack of alignment could be the cause of weak performance.

Step #2: Define goals.

As a manager, an important part of your job is to define goals for yourself and for your employees. In addition, you need to ensure the goals you do set match up with larger, organizational strategies and objectives. But before you assign certain objectives to your staff, work with each one in the goal setting and strategizing process. When they have a voice in it, they’ll be more vested and motivated to succeed.

Step #3: Set the tone.

Your people look to you to set the tone. So if you expect your employees to arrive at work by a certain time, or dress in a certain way, then you should live by those same rules.

Step #4: Talk often.

Don’t wait until year-end performance reviews to talk with your employees. You should be checking in with them regularly, even if it’s on an informal basis. It’s also much easier to touch base throughout the year to learn about issues, concerns, or questions they may have and deal with them before they become emergency situations. During these talks, you can let your staff members know too where they stand – areas in which they’re performing well and those that could use some improvement.

Step #5: Get new hires on board.

When you hire a new employee, make sure you define clear expectations from the start. You’ll reduce the chance of performance issues down the line if you explain what you expect, when you expect it by and how success will be measured.

When you don’t set clear expectations, it can result in a dysfunctional team that gets little done. Instead, take the steps above to define goals and expectations so your employees produce the best results.

Do you need help hiring for your team? Call the experts at Murray Resources. As a leading Houston staffing agency, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source, hire and retain top talent for permanent, temporary, part-time and contract opportunities.

Ready to get started? Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

How to Recognize Great IT Candidates

December 15th, 2015

As Houston technical recruiters, Murray Resources knows when it comes to IT, hiring isn’t easy. While you may have a good amount of candidates apply for a position, spotting the strongest ones can be a challenge. And, as you know, a high performer is going to have a far more positive impact on your bottom line than someone who’s just mediocre. So how can you recognize great IT talent next time you’re looking to hire for your tech team? Here are some tips to help you:

Tip #1: Define Your Ideal Candidate

Don’t start the hiring process without knowing precisely the kind of candidate you’re looking for. Before you begin, define their role and the skills, experience and personality that best fit it. Identity not only the tasks, duties and responsibilities associated with the position, but think too about goals and how success will be measured. The more you can define the role and who your ideal candidate is, the better chances you’ll have of spotting them.

Tip #2: Don’t take a hard line on experience.

For example, if you’re looking for a candidate with at least five years of programming experience, but you find a great candidate with only three years, don’t overlook them. If they’re smart, passionate and eager to learn, they may become a more valuable asset to your company than someone with more experience. Hard skills can always be learned; attitude usually cannot.

Tip #3: Don’t focus on imperfections.

It’s true that some of the best candidates don’t have the perfect resume, a flawless GPA, or a degree from a prestigious university. But don’t let these details get in the way of you finding the best candidate. Strong candidates don’t always come in neat packages with perfect resumes; some may have a more unorthodox background. Don’t overlook these “diamonds in the rough” when you’re hiring.

Tip #4: Perform your due diligence.

That said, don’t skip important steps in the hiring process just because you like a certain candidate. It’s always important to check references, verify credentials, and performs skills and personality testing to ensure you make the best hiring decision.

Tip #5: Promote the opportunity.

Once you have a handful of candidates you’re interested, it’s up to you to promote the position and your company to get them excited about coming on board. Some ways to do that include talking about the interesting and challenging work, the company’s commitment to investing in the latest technology, opportunities for advancement, and any other perks and benefits you think would appeal to them. Get them excited about working for you.

If you’d like more help hiring tech talent for your IT team, call Murray Resources. Our Houston technical recruiters are highly experienced at identifying and placing world-class information technology (IT) talent. Our in-depth technical knowledge allows us to pinpoint even the most highly-specialized IT professionals for a wide range of companies and projects throughout Houston. Whether your needs are full-time / direct hire or temporary / contract, we can help. Contact us today.

Posted in: Blog

How to Spot a Weak Candidate

December 1st, 2015

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that hiring mistakes are expensive. But the good news is that many times, they can be avoided. To help ensure you filter out the weak candidates – and focus on the strong ones – be on the lookout for these negative traits:

They give you ambiguous information.

When you ask a candidate a question, they should be able to offer you detailed information and examples from past work experiences that highlight the skill set and experience you’re interested in. However, when a candidate can’t go into a specifics, it’s a sign they lack the background you’re after.

They give long-winded answers.

Sometimes a candidate may ramble due to nerves. But in many cases, it’s a sign that they don’t really understand what you’re asking. In addition, not being able to offer a concise answer means their communication skills need improvement.

They’re too informal about the interview.

They may show up a few minutes late, dress in attire that’s not completely appropriate and keep their cell phone in hand during the interview. These types of behaviors shows a total lack of regard for both you and your company…and it’s also a sign of what’s to come should you hire this person. A strong job candidate doesn’t need to be overly formal, but they should know how to act professionally during the interviewing process.

They aren’t prepared.

It’s important for candidates to spend some time before the job interview researching your company. Doing so enables them to ask insightful question to assess whether the position is a good fit for them and also shows their enthusiasm for the job. However, when a candidate shows up ill-prepared, it demonstrates they’re not willing to put in the work…even during the interview process.

They focus on the negative.

Most people have had a boss or co-workers they didn’t care for at some point during their careers. However, when a candidate focuses on negative experiences like these, it’s a sign that they lack judgment and professionalism.

They focus on the money.

It’s only natural for a candidate to want to know about the compensation, benefits and perks associated with the position. However, if their first few questions revolve around salary and vacation time, then the candidate likely doesn’t care much about the job or the company.

When a candidate demonstrates the traits above, then it’s time to cross them off your short list. If you’d rather outsource the process to the experts, call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog

Why You Should Be Hiring Gen Y Workers

November 24th, 2015

When you ask most people, they’ll say that the typical Gen Y worker (born between 1980-2000) is entitled and lazy. However, as Houston software recruiters, we know that this stereotype isn’t necessarily true. And in fact, if you overlook this up-and-coming age group when you’re recruiting, it could negatively impact the strength of your IT team, and your company as a whole. So why are Gen Y-ers worthy of your attention when you need IT talent? Here are a few reasons:

They grew up with technology.

As a result, they are more tech-savvy than any generation that came before them. For them, the use of technology – and the pursuit of the latest and greatest – is second nature. And the proof is in the numbers. In fact, according to Monster.com, Gen Y-ers are three times more likely than employees in other generations to hold IT certifications.

They are budget friendly to hire.

Since most Gen Y-ers are still early on in their careers, you can tap into their technical knowledge without breaking the budget. That’s not to say you shouldn’t offer competitive compensation, or try to hire them for a lower-than-market value price. You should always offer fair compensation.

They are growing in numbers.

With Baby Boomers retiring or just about to, this generation can more than fill the gaps. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that more than one in three new hires today is a milennial. That’s a lot of potential new hires!

They are driven.

Sure, there are lazy individuals in every generation. But overall, this group of the workforce is ambitious and driven to succeed. Sure, you might have to manage them a little differently. For instance, they require performance feedback and input far more than previous generations. But you can put their ambition to work at your company and positively impact your bottom line.

They stay in-the-know.

More than other generations before them, Gen Y employees aim to stay on top of emerging trends and developments, so they can keep their skills fresh and current. This attitude and ethic can serve to positively shape your company’s culture, as well as your bottom line with fresh ideas and creative insights.

If you need to hire top IT talent, follow the tips above so you don’t miss out on the technically skilled and ambitious Gen Y generation. However, if you’re interested in outsourcing the process, call the Houston software recruiters at Murray Resources. Our IT staffing division specializes in in recruiting technology professionals, ranging from software engineers to desktop support. We know where to look to find the most talent tech people, but also how to rigorously screen and evaluate them – all so you find your next great hire. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Why Outsourcing to Technical Recruiters in Houston Can Save You Money

November 10th, 2015

The economy has changed dramatically in recent years, making recruiting the right technical candidates more challenging than ever. From fierce competition due to skills shortages to ever-evolving business conditions, finding and hiring the right people in this new recruiting environment requires a different approach.

However, when you outsource the task to an expert – in other words, technical recruiters in Houston – you can find the best technical candidates, avoid the risk of hiring mistakes, and save time and money in the process. Here’s how:

Less Time-to-Hire

When you work with technical recruiters in Houston, they have a proven process in place based on years of industry experience and insight. So when you need to fill a position – whether on a contract or full-time basis – they immediately know where to look and may even already have relationships with candidates who would be a good fit. Rather than spending your valuable time searching for strong candidates, you can focus on other priorities and leave the task to the technical recruiting experts.

Increased Access to Candidates With Specialized Skill

Finding technical candidates can be a challenge, but sourcing those with a specialized skill set can be downright impossible…unless, of course, you’ve partnered with reputable technical recruiters in Houston. Recruiters are always doing just that…recruiting. So they come across a wide array of technical talent with various competencies across all levels, including those who may suit your unique needs.

A More Efficient Process

Between advertising fees and time to interview candidates, there are many direct and indirect costs to hiring. And they can add up quickly. But when you work with technical recruiters in Houston, you pay one fixed fee, so you know the expenses walking into the partnership. An experienced recruiter is also far more efficient with the process in terms of both cost and time.

Top Technical Candidates

In many cases, a new hire will quit after just a few months on the job, oftentimes due to lack of fit. However, when you work with a technical recruiter who understands the industry, you can gain access to better fit candidates, make a better hiring decision and avoid the costly risk of a hiring mistake.

Finding the right technical talent for your job opening be both challenging and expensive. But when you outsource the task to a technical recruiter, you can lower costs, gain access to top talent, and reduce the hassles of hiring.

If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of working with a technical recruiter in Houston, call Murray Resources. As top Houston technical recruiters, we can give you access to the highest quality talent, whether you need a programmer, project manager, or desktop support personnel. Contact us today to learn more or get started.

Posted in: Blog

Think You Made a Hiring Mistake? Here’s How to Fix It

October 20th, 2015

You’ve screened hundreds of candidates, interviewed dozens and made your final decision. However, now that the employee is on the job, you’re second guessing your choice to hire them. If this sounds familiar, you’re certainly not alone. Every employer has made a hiring mistake at one time or another. The question is – what should you do about it? First, you need to be able to spot a few red flags. They are:

Red flag #1: An inability to learn from mistakes.

Expect new hires to make mistakes. It’s going to happen. However, if your new hire is making the same mistake again and again, there’s a problem. Either they aren’t listening, don’t understand what they’re supposed to be doing, or they simply don’t care.

What to do: When this happens, schedule a casual sit down chat with them. Don’t be harsh or overly critical. Simply state the problem and ask the employee what’s going on. Maybe they’re not clear on their role, or perhaps they need some extra training and support. Whatever the case, it’s important to find out what’s causing the issue so you can properly rectify it.

Red flag #2: There’s an attitude problem.

Your new hire was charming during the hiring process, but now they’re crabby and negative on the job. It could be that you made a hiring mistake, or they simply might be under extreme stress and acting out because of it.

What to do: If this is happening at your company, you need to fix the situation as soon as possible. As leading Houston recruiters, Murray Resources knows that a toxic attitude can quickly spread like a virus to other employees, negatively impacting morale and your company as a whole. Schedule some time with your new hire to find out what’s going on. Be prepared with specific examples of their attitude and explain the impact it’s having on the team. In many cases, the person may not even realize they are being overly negative.

Red flag #3: They’re acting like a lone wolf.

Some positions require people who can act more independently. However, they still need to collaborate and be a part of the team. If your new hire isn’t making any effort to get to know others or join forces on projects, it could be a sign of a poor cultural fit.

What to do: When this happens, make an effort to get the new hire more involved in activities at the company and with their co-workers. They may simply need a little nudge, as well as more time to adjust. Another option is to pair them up with a company veteran who can act as a buddy and make them feel more comfortable and welcome.

Just because a new hire isn’t producing within the first few weeks on the job doesn’t mean you made a bad hiring decision. However, if you spot the red flags above, it’s a sign that the situation could deteriorate – and it’s up to you to act.

Do you need help replacing a bad hire? If you do, call Murray Resources. As leading Houston recruiters, we can take the hassle out of hiring  – all so you can focus on other priorities while still gaining access to top quality talent. Contact us today if you’d like to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

How to Improve Your Technical Staffing Strategy

August 11th, 2015

As one of Houston’s top technical staffing agencies, Murray Resources knows recruiting IT talent is no easy task. The supply of tech talent simply cannot keep up with demand – and it’s only going to get worse.

In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:

“Employment and output in computer systems design and related services are projected to grow rapidly over the next decade, outpacing similar professional, scientific, and technical industries and the economy as a whole. Between 2010 and 2020, output in computer systems design and related services is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 6.1 percent, compared with 3.6 percent for the broad industry category – professional, scientific, and technical services – and 2.9 percent for all industries.”

So if your company needs access to technology stars, how can you find and hire them?

Make technical staffing a top priority.

Technical staffing shouldn’t be something you’re doing only when you have a position open. When you wait to recruit, you’re only putting your company in a position of desperation. Rather, it should be an ongoing effort that takes precedence in your organization. After all, where would your company be without great talent?

One way to find and hire top talent is to build a strong employer brand that people want to work for. Use social channels to post about your company, your culture, and why employees love working there.

Move quickly.

One of the benefits of focusing on technical staffing – and developing a robust network of talent – is that when you do need an app developer, programmer, or IT project manager, you already have relationships built. All you need to do is reach out to your network. As a result, your hiring process will move more quickly, enabling you to make offers faster. This is critically important considering IT professionals typically have multiple job offers from which to choose.

That being said, don’t try to move so fast that you don’t properly vet candidates. Still follow a process of interviewing, testing, and verifying credentials to ensure you identify the right people for your positions.

Pay more for tech skills in high demand.

If you need to hire for a position that’s calls for a high-demand skill set, be prepared to pay more for it. If you don’t, your competitors will – and they’ll wind up with the best tech people as a result.

Measure your efforts.

Dig dip into your technical staffing strategy so you can measure its effectiveness. For instance, find out how many interviews it takes to close a candidate and how long it typically takes to make an offer. When you have data like this in hand, you can use it to improve the technical staffing process.

Would you like to outsource your technical staffing function to the experts? Call Murray Resources. As one of Houston’s top technical staffing agencies, we are highly experienced at identifying and placing world-class technical talent. Our in-depth technical knowledge allows us to pinpoint even the most highly-specialized IT professionals for a wide range of companies and projects throughout Houston. Whether your needs are full-time / direct hire or temporary / contract, we can help. Contact us today.

 

Posted in: Blog

Is Your Underperformer Worth Saving?

May 5th, 2015
As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that most companies have at least one: An employee who’s hard working and intelligent, but simply not cutting it in their role. While everyone has a bad week or bad month, if your employee is consistently under-producing, it’s time to take action. The question is:
Do you try to save your staff member or simply let them go?

It’s certainly a decision you need to make. But, keep in mind, sometimes it’s not worth firing an underperformer. In fact, according to the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM), it costs an average of two and half times an employee’s salary to replace them. For someone in a specialized field, it can be up to four times their salary. That’s what makes firing so expensive.

With that said, if you’d like to give your employee a second chance, there are some steps you can take to improve their odds of getting back on track. For instance:

Talk to your employee.

Most managers don’t like having awkward discussions with their employees, especially about poor performance. But if you want them to improve, it’s an absolute must-take first step in the process.

Make goals and expectations clear.

Too many times, an employee’s poor performance is, at least in part, due to a manager not defining goals and expectations. But if an employee doesn’t know what you expect from them, how can they deliver? The simple answer is: They can’t. And to anticipate them to isn’t fair to your employee. That’s why it’s so important to make sure your goals and expectations for all of your team members are crystal clear.

Provide support.

What support does the employee need to improve? Training seminars? Coaching and mentoring? Online courses? Whatever it is, make sure they gain access to the right resources to boost their performance.

Monitor progress and hold your employee accountable.

It’s important that you regularly check in with your employee to monitor their progress and make sure they are improving. If not, then it’s your job to hold them accountable.

That being said, sometimes it’s not worth giving an employee a second chance. In some cases, a person who was the right fit three years ago isn’t so today. It’s up to you to evaluate the situation and make the best decision.

Do you need help adding high performance employees to your team? Call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Houston, TX, we can assist you with the entire search process – from sourcing and screening to hiring and retaining top talent. Contact us today to get started.

 

Posted in: Blog

Can I Be Friends With My Employees?

April 21st, 2015

It can be difficult when you have a group of co-workers that you’re friends with. Then, when you’re promoted to manager, they stop inviting you to lunches, after hours drinks and other social events. But as one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows it’s not you; it’s your new job. And as a manager, you shouldn’t be aiming to be friends with your staff. Why? Here are a few good reasons:

You’ll lose some credibility.

You need your staff to take you seriously. But when you’re friends with them, they won’t. For instance, rather than implementing an idea of yours they don’t like, they’ll just roll their eyes at you.

You’ll favor those you’re friends with.

It’s only normal to develop friendships with those you like and like to be around the most. But that’s not going to include every member of your staff. And those left out will view you as favoring the people you’re friends with. And, it’s more than likely you will end up favoring your friends / employees even if you have every intention not to. This could especially become an issue when you’re doling out promotions or raises. Without meaning to, you could offer better opportunities to those you’re friends with.

You might say something you shouldn’t.

When you’re the manager, you have a lot of difficult and sometimes painful decisions to make. And it can be a lonely job. As a result, it might be tempting to share some of these details with one of your friends / employees. But doing so could land you in trouble, especially if you’re talking about issues with other employees.

You’ll have a harder time dealing with performance issues.

It’s hard to tell a friend that their work isn’t up to par, or worse, fire them. If it was another staff member you weren’t friends with, you might not have any issues replacing them. But if they’re your friend, it will be much harder to do.

All that said, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be warm and friendly with your staff. But you should avoid stepping into “best friend” territory and sharing too much personal information with any one staff member.

You might think being friends with your employees makes your job easier; but in the long run, you’re asking for trouble. There are simply too many complications that can arise when you get too close to your staff.

Do you need help staffing your team? If you do, call the experts at Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

 

Posted in: Blog

Advice for Managing Houston Oil & Gas Layoffs

February 3rd, 2015

Houston’s energy industry has been facing big layoffs and spending cuts due to plunging crude oil prices. While paying less at the pump is good for the consumer, it’s costly for companies and employees. Consider these statistics:

  • Schlumberger – 9,000 employees cut
  • Apache – 5% of workforce cut
  • Halliburton – 1,000 employees cut

In addition, as a top staffing and recruiting firm in the energy industry, Murray Resources knows the situation may actually get worse before it gets better. How can you manage well during layoffs – and keep your remaining staff productive and on task?

Start by following these tips:

Communicate often.

During difficult times it’s critical for your staff to know where they stand, even if the news isn’t good. Now is not the time to shut down the lines of communication. In fact, you should be communicating with your employees more than ever. You may not be able to offer any guarantees, but at least you can explain to them why you are making the decisions you are. Even if you don’t know what the future will bring, lay out a few possible scenarios so your staff can prepare.

Show compassion.

Whether an employee has been laid off, or left behind, the situation is difficult and both need time to let the news sink in. In addition, don’t think that your staff is simply “happy to still have jobs”; they’re likely mourning the loss of co-workers and friends and wondering what the future holds for them. So show some compassion and offer as much re-assurance as possible.

Cut the perks.

Nothing will upset and frustrate employees more than dealing with potential layoffs, only to see management going out for expensive lunches. Now’s the time to “walk the walk” and cut the unnecessary and expensive perks.

Thank employees.

Those left behind may have to take on more work to keep the company running. Make sure you show them appreciation for doing so, whether it’s bringing in lunch every once in a while or simply saying “thanks.” You want your team to understand that you’re all in this together and that you recognize and appreciate their contributions.

Prioritize work.

With fewer employees doing more work, it’s important to prioritize to ensure no one gets burned out. Meet with your team members and go over responsibilities to determine what isn’t mission critical. Create a list of priorities and make sure the most important tasks are focused on first.

Stay calm.

Your team is going to be taking cues from you. So it’s important to stay calm on the surface even if you’re stressed.

Layoffs are never easy. But if you manage them right, you can minimize damages and ensure your people survive and stay focused on the future of the company.

If you need additional human resources help for your company, call Murray Resources. As a top staffing and recruiting firm in the energy industry, we can help take the hassle out of HR. Contact us today to learn more.

Posted in: Blog

Get Off to a Great Start With Your Team in 2015

January 20th, 2015

What do your employees think about you? If you’re not sure, or if you suspect their impression isn’t a good one, then the New Year is an ideal time to take a step back, evaluate your performance and make improvements that will deliver great results. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Set clear expectations.

As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, Murray Resources knows that more often than not, frustration and underperformance ensue when there are murky expectations. When employees don’t know what you want them to do – in terms of tasks, timelines, deliverables and goals – they’re going to flounder. They can’t read your mind. It’s therefore imperative that you work with each of your team members to set expectations and how you plan to measure their performance.

Don’t pay lip service.

If you tell an employee you’re going to do something, do it. If there’s a reason you couldn’t deliver, explain why. But when you consistently keep your word, even if the results or feedback aren’t what an employee hoped for, you’re going to create a high level of trust among your team members.

Ask for feedback.

Ask your staff to let you know when they have questions, concerns, or challenges they’re facing. When they do offer input, don’t get defensive. Remember, you’re all on the same team. And the information they offer can be invaluable in improving company performance. So strive to create an environment that promotes communication – one in which employees aren’t scared to come to you with ideas or issues.

Offer feedback.

Let your employees know where they stand. Give input – both positive and constructive – on a regular basis. Make sure employees know about areas that need improvement before they get too far off track. Don’t wait until year end performance reviews to assess the past year.

Make sure employees have access to the resources they need.

This goes hand-in-hand with offering feedback. If an employee isn’t meeting expectations, don’t simply tell them that. Make sure they have the resources they need to improve, whether it’s enrolling in a training seminar, shadowing a veteran staff member, or investing in newer equipment.

Concentrate on results.

Rules are in place for a reason. But if they’re hindering positive results and productivity, then they deserve a second look. Don’t be so committed to following the rules just for the sake of it. Look for faster, better, more agile ways to get things done.

Treat your people with respect.

Don’t yell, berate, insult, or embarrass your employees when you’re upset. There are far more productive ways to get the results you’re after. Instead, treat people with dignity and respect at all times.

If your people aren’t happy, they will eventually leave in search of a better opportunity. So follow the tips above to improve your management skills and create a healthier work environment in 2015 and beyond.

Has your company recently experienced turnover? If it has, and you need help with the hiring process, call Murray Resources. As one of the leading staffing agencies in Houston, TX, organizations all over the city rely on our expertise to source and retain top talent for hard-to-fill, key positions across a broad range of business disciplines. Contact us today to find out more.

Posted in: Blog
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