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Cast wide net when looking for employees

March 25, 2013

Like me, you may have noticed an increasing number of “Now Hiring” type signs and banners popping up throughout the city, primarily in the retail sector. Here are three tips for finding the right help.

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Like me, you may have noticed an increasing number of “Now Hiring” type signs and banners popping up throughout the city, primarily in the retail sector.

My thought is they are a result of increased sales for these businesses because of the influx of oil field related people, and the fact that some employees are being lured away with higher wages and promises of overtime in the oil field sector. In any case these small businesses need more people, which can pose challenges for them to find the right people. Some local small businesses may have to rethink their methods of recruiting candidates for employment.

First of all take a look at your job postings. Of course there are legal aspects of a job posting you need to watch out for, but more importantly look at the wording. Does it accurately reflect the position and what a person needs to do to be successful? In my opinion there is no room for hype here, but an accurate and interesting description of the position, written in a way that meets all legal requirements.

Second, take a look at different groups of candidates for your positions. If you have not already, consider promoting your open positions to more mature-aged candidates and candidates of high school age. It has been my experience when I ran businesses both of these groups can yield excellent employees.

Keep in mind there are legalities you might face in hiring younger people, some depend on your industry and the jobs they might perform. In addition, you may wish to consider promoting job postings to the disabled. I recently encountered what I would call a very disabled person in a food service business. She performed her duties in an excellent way and with a very pleasant personality. I will have to admit she was an inspiration to me and to her coworkers just to watch her. It made my difficult day seem trivial compared to her challenges.

San Angelo has excellent organizations that can give small businesses assistance in finding the right employees, including from the groups mentioned above. The Concho Valley Workforce Solutions, under the umbrella of the Concho Valley Workforce Development Board, has employer service representatives who can help with this task. One way is getting your job posting on, which is a free service. They can also put you in touch with agencies that help find jobs for the disabled. See Concho Valley Workforce Solutions at

For college candidates, ASU Career Development Office has a website where employers can post their positions. It is viewed by ASU students of all ages who are looking for part time employment. Howard College has a similar service on their website.

In addition to these resources there are local human resource consultants and employment agencies that can assist with your hiring needs. Keep in mind a fee may be involved with these services.

The positive part of more people moving to the area because of oil field activity means increased sales for local small businesses. But with it comes the challenges of finding and retaining employees who are also being sought after by oil field related firms. Consider the above ideas and resources to help.

“Business Tips” was written by Dave Erickson, Director and Certified Business Adviser IV, of Angelo State University’s Small Business Development Center. Contact him


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