Hiring managers in the food industry have a lot on their plates, especially at the start of a new year. In addition to your regular responsibilities, you may find yourself going through resumes to fill positions that became open during the holidays or to fill new jobs created to help manage growth expected this year. Kinsa Group knows that food and beverage industry executives have a to-do list a mile long when the calendar flips to January.

 

As you navigate the hiring process, be sure to consider legal changes from the past year that can have a significant impact on how to conduct your interviews. Ensure you’re up-to-date on new laws in your area, and explore other pieces of advice below from Kinsa in order to start the year off right!

 

Know what you can and can’t ask about salary history 

Some states have laws prohibiting what you may ask a candidate about their previous salary. There are restrictions in place in three counties near New York City, in addition to the city itself, for example, while 11 other states and Puerto Rico have outright bans in place now, and Colorado’s state law will go into effect in 2021.

On the other hand, if you’re looking to hire someone in Michigan or Wisconsin, state governments have gone in the opposite direction, changing the law so no local government can enact a ban on questions regarding salary history.

Kinsa Group has some advice on how to determine an appropriate salary offer, based on experience, position, and market rate, and can provide additional information upon requestYou can always consult the Kinsa Group Food and Beverage Salary Guide as a resource as well!  

 

Tune-up your interview skills 

It’s not just candidates who can use a little practice and polish before an interview. There’s a lot of pressure on hiring managers to hire only the best possible people, but are you asking the right questions to find them?

Remember, younger job applicants that are new to the food and beverage industry might not be looking for the same things as older, more established workers. Here are a few sample questions to keep in mind for each candidate as the interview process carries on:  

  • What type of work environment appeals to you?  
  • What are your career goals?  
  • What experiences have shaped your life in meaningful ways?  

It’s also an excellent time to discuss your company values and priorities with job candidates and confirm your potential new hire is an extension of your mission and brandYour brand identity sets you apart from the competition. Discuss your corporate culture. Do you value volunteerism? What benefits do you offer employees that might be unexpected, unorthodox, or unusual?

Remember, too, that this is a highly competitive time in the job market. Do your part to make the candidate feel welcome and to help persuade them to join your team — it’s not just candidates reaching out with follow-up notes anymore!

 

Expand and modernize your toolbox 

Could your HR department pick up any new software to help find candidates?

The biggest buzz in technology these days is artificial intelligence. Did you know there are AI tools that can help you with sourcing candidates and studying their work history before an initial phone call is even made? Other AI options also include texting engagement and candidate matching platforms to help identify whether a potential new hire would make a good fit.

Many of these tools don’t require the purchase of specialized equipment but instead, may work in conjunction with programs your HR department might already be using.

  • WhoKnows is software designed to compile a worker’s experience and skill profile based on websites that person visits, their activity on other message boards, and how others in the industry discuss the person. The best part is, it plugs right into open software you might already be using.
  • Entelo is another option that helps you set up specific parameters for a potential candidate, including location, job titles, a field of study, and even which university they attended.
  • There are even tools to help start the vetting process before the interview invitation is made! Interview Mocha offers its clients a skills evaluation that can help you identify qualified candidates.

Use the web to your advantage

Consider your social media presence, as this is where many candidates get their news and look for future employers. Use LinkedIn Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to talk about your company. It could entice passive candidates to take a closer look.

 

Now is the best time to take stock of your food industry recruiting and hiring practices and see where improvements can be made.  

With a long, successful track record of placing talented executives and professionals in the food and beverage industry, Kinsa Group has the tools to source, recruit and assess the best candidates in your category. Our Account Managers are always ready to help with advice to keep your hiring skills sharp. Contact us today, and let’s make 2020 your company’s most successful hiring year yet.

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