September 11, 2019
Are you thinking about when to hire your first employee? Maybe you’re drowning in busy work, or you’re working 12-14 hour days, 7 days a week (like I was). You undoubtedly need someone to help take some of the pressure off but you’re uncertain what their job description should be, or how many hours they should work. It’s easier than you think to pinpoint the details so let’s take a closer look.
The easiest (and most eye-opening) way you can determine when to hire your first employee is to keep a time log. I touched on this in a previous post around establishing an order minimum and it’s pretty simple.
Using a basic time log (such as this log via Google Docs), keep track of the time you spend on every task within your business for an entire month. You can also use any other sort of time tracking program such as Toggl, just make sure you’re diligent!
Tasks may include:
I wouldn’t estimate the time you spend on each task as it likely takes longer than you may realize. When you sit down and accurately log your minutes and hours, you’ll gain a better understanding of how long things take. This is especially helpful when onboarding a new employee as you’ll know exactly how much time responsibilities take, which will help determine how many hours a week they should work.
Once you’ve logged your time, you’ll want to assign buckets or categories to each such as business operations, marketing, sales, administrative, and finance. Using the time log calculator below, total up your hours for each category.
Looking over the total time for each category, ask yourself these questions:
After you’ve gone through the process of tracking, logging and reviewing your time, you’ll have a much better understanding of your hiring needs. Looking over your hours and business needs, you’ll start to see a trend in tasks.
When I went through this activity, I first made a guess that I was working 50-60 hours a week. After two weeks of tracking my time, I was shocked to learn I was working closer to 80 hours a week! The bulk of my time was taken up in sales (handling rental inquiries, design consultations, proposal follow-ups, etc.) and marketing (social media posting, image prep, etc.).
Once I saw the numbers, I immediately reached out to a social media strategist to outsource all of my Instagram (talk about a weight off my shoulders!) and hired a “Jill of all trades”. It wasn’t a glamorous title, but her main focus was working directly with clients and helping with order prep so she knew the ins and outs of both operations and sales.
Yes, hiring your first employee can be scary! But knowing your numbers and having a plan in place knowing exactly the work you want to offload will help take the stress away.
I work with specialty and vintage rental businesses large and small, helping you build and scale your business and be more productive. Owning an award-winning rental business for over 7 years and managing a team of over 30 employees in the corporate sector for a Fortune 100 company, I know the ins and outs of HR.
If you need help creating your own human resources strategy such as hiring, handling disciplinary actions, crafting your job description, or interview questions, schedule a coaching call with me, or contact me via email or call 619.577.3117 to inquire about customized services for you.