How many times has the topic of hiring and retaining employees for the portable toilet industry come up? Hundreds? Well ServiceCore is here to help! We did research within the online community, spoke to an industry leader in the portable toilet space, and attended the PSAI’s roundtable on Hiring and Retaining Service Techs.
Staffing can be a struggle in the liquid waste industry. We constantly see pleas for how to hire and keep reliable employees across different platforms. So, we teamed up the PSAI to put our heads together and see if we can help. We scoured the depths of the online communities, interviewed an industry leader, and discussed with the community at-large during the PSAI’s roundtable last week on Hiring and Retaining Service Techs. Without further ado, here’s our handy guide to building the best workforce for your company:
Phase 1: Job posting and interviewing
Step 1: Create a strong job description by writing out the physical duties of the job. This is important so you have candidates that understand what the job entails. Don’t be afraid to include relevant personality characteristics as preferred traits based on previous successful hires.
Step 2: If you don’t have an interview process, create one!
See below for an interview template from an industry leader and the PSAI Roundtable discussion:
- Start with a phone interview. First impressions are important and this will save you time in the long run.
- Do they have a clean driving record so they can be insured on the company’s policy?
- Are they willing to work weekends?
- What do they know about you?
- Run their driver’s license!
- Call their references.
- Are they reliable?
- Are they safety conscious?
- Do they get along with others?
- Are they self motivated?
- Have the candidate come into the office for an in person interview.
- PRO TIP: Hire based on the person’s character and not their skill level. You can’t teach attitude, but you can train someone!
- Give the person a tour of the yard while they are there for the interview.
- Schedule a ride along with the route supervisor. For the ride along, pay them by the hour for their time.
- The candidate can determine if they can deal with the “sites and smells” of the industry before time is invested in hiring and training.
- Talk with them about how the ride along went and what they like about the job opportunity.
- PRO TIP: If you interview more than one person, talk with everyone involved in the interviewing process about how the candidates will fit into the business.
Step 3: Find applicants
- Best online places to post from industry leaders and the PSAI:
- Indeed and ZipRecruiter
- Craigslist (this seems to work the best)
- Job boards
- Set up a referral program for your employees.
- Cash payout when the person they referred gets hired and is with the company for 90 days.
- Contact a local temp agency that will keep an eye out for your company and send over candidates.
Step 4: Go through the interview process that you have already outlined!
Phase 2: Onboarding your new hire
Establish a training process that you use each time you hire a new employee. Spend the time training the person right the first time. This will save you time and money in the long run.
Basic training layout example:
- Week 1: In-office training and introductions to the team!
- Safety training: truck safety, road safety, job site safety, DOT responsibility etc.
- Have the new hire work the phones and cross train so they know what is going on in the office.
- Week 2: The new hire rides with a lead driver to be trained on the correct way to get each job done.
- This should include software training so they can use the software in the field.
- Weeks 3 & 4: The new hire drives and the lead driver rides with them.
- This is also to ensure the new hire knows how to use his own truck as not every truck is built the same.
- New driver is on their own after this!
- PRO TIP: Keep the training schedule between 2-4 weeks.
Phase 3: Hiring is expensive… keeping your employees
We’ve all heard that acquiring a new customer is way more expensive than retaining an existing one. Well, the same can be said for employees. Here are some tips to keep your employees satisfied and on your team for years to come.
- Purchase the right equipment. Working with outdated or unreliable equipment increases frustration and decreases productivity.
- Offer reasonable compensation.
- PRO TIP: Offer a little more than your competitors to help keep employees.
- Health insurance or reimburse for healthcare, 401k, and PTO.
- You want your employees to know you value their health and future.
- Provide honest and supportive feedback.
- Without reviews an employee doesn’t get consistent feedback.
- Provide the opportunity for the employee to share ideas. Reviews shouldn’t be a one-sided conversation and receiving upward feedback can be a great way to show employees that you value their input.
- Positive culture is KEY! Keep an eye on you and your leaders attitudes to help make sure you’re setting the tone.
- Consider implementing incentive programs
- Team lunches
- Take the team out to lunch, order food into the office or even grill in the yard.
- Gift cards
- For new leads, cleanest truck, best attitude, etc.
- Show appreciation
- When you see someone doing a good job.
- When you get a positive review.
- In team meetings highlight someone that is going above and beyond.
- End of the year extras
- Drivers get new boots
- Holiday pay
- Give your drivers raises based on their performance.
- Give them goals in training or CE’s they can take to get a raise in pay.
- Be available
- People respect a boss that is available if they have a problem. Give your drivers your cell phone number. They are in charge of very expensive equipment and need to know you are available for emergencies.
We hope that this blog has helped you with your hiring process. If you’re looking to stay up to date on what is going on in the portable industry the PSAI is a great resource. The PSAI offers education and information exclusively for the portable sanitation industry and is always up to date on the latest and greatest.
If you have any other tips or suggestions please email firstname.lastname@example.org!