Trying to find the right hire


SO, I seem to be in a endless battle of finding qualified crew that WANT TO WORK. So many futile efforts have been put forth with interviews and guys I have brought on that either dont show up to work after two days or genuinely don’t want to work to get paid. Tired of my generation work ethic.

How has everyone overcome the hiring obstacle? Where are you advertising for hires (or are you)? What questions have you found the most beneficial to ask during interviews? Im stuck in the rut of working myself to death and not feeling like I am able to trust any hires.


This may sound nominal but what are your pay scales per position? Lead tech, asst tech?

We start are leads at 18 and go up to 22. Asst start at 15 and up to 17.

Unfortunately money is a motivating factor. I know within 2 hrs if the guy will work out or not. I’ve been thru 7 employees in the last yr. I also have an employee who has been with me for 11 yrs. Currently I have 4 guys. 3 leads and 1 who is an asst. But working on being a lead.


Currently I have been starting at 16 and have been telling them there is opportunity to move up to 17 within a month if I can see effort and how much the would like to take the reigns. I would have no issue paying someone up to $20-21 hr if there would be a interest in staying! I have hired many guys 1099 for larger jobs but have never been in a position to bring someone on 8 hrs a day 5 days a week. Still not even really looking for someone fulltime but have been reaching out to some fire dept and to my military friends to see if anyones interested as both fields have dedicated individuals and a good work ethic


The hardest part for me too is letting go of not being there on every job. Want to keep a high reputation and trust is hard to come by apparently with many guys


I feel you man… I have the trucks, equipment, and the jobs…but finding employees is harder then all of those. Well finding good ones. Going to start working on in next week for new hires in late April. If you find the secret let me know lol


Part of the problem might be that your not hiring for a full time position. Most people want a job they can depend on.

As far as letting go, you will find this to be the hardest part but the most rewarding part. Once you gain confidence in your crew you will let go and realize that you should have done this yrs ago. You will have more freedom and ability to grow your business and also have more time to do the things you wanna do. Yes there will still be times when you still have to run around and help them but it become less frequent over time.

The key to having employees is making sure they are trained and trained to think like you. If their training is bad then how do you think their work will be?

Also most customers dont look for perfection. They just want a good job done at a good price. Your customer service before,during and after the job are the biggest key.


Very helpful info, thank you. Problem is I just dont have the jobs lined up for a fulltime position currently. I am seeking to grow the business but it is very hard to do until I get someone working. Training is the thing that I know is essential, its just extremely frustrating when you keep training people who quit on you two-five days later.


As time goes on you will be able to tell after a few hrs if they will work out or not.
I actually stopped training my new employees. I let my main guy train them. He has our system down packed.


What systems do you use, if any to manage your crew? Ive been using Housecall Pro @squidskc sold me on it but what works for your system with 4 guys? What part do you play in the day to day?


I remember someone mentioned they hire older guys on a PT basis and it works out really well for them.


I use the customer factor. It works great. All my leads have it as well on their phones.
My role in day to day ops is to sell and take care of any issues that may arise. I also do inventory and order what we need. But my main job is being the salesman and face for my company.


That’s me. I have 4 retirees that are over the moon to have 20 hours a week to get out of the house and stay active. In over a year they’ve called in sick or not showed up to a job exactly ZERO times.

Millennial hires have been ding dongs. One I caught asleep under a tree when I left a concrete cleaning job for a couple hours and another didn’t even show up for his first day.

You want veterans, retirees, or Hispanics homie. These are the guys I’m recruiting. MOST other 18-35 males if worth much at all are already running their own businesses. Lol


And women. Women tend to be more reliable than men it would seem plus there are likely many who would love to be in the service industry, but they’ve been told their whole lives are supposed to be teachers and secretaries. I bet some jump at the chance to work with you.


I had my cousin’s son (18yrs old 6’3" and 240lbs football player) work for me all last summer. He was getting ready to go to basic training in the Army this fall and needed a job for the summer. He showed up most of the time, but was weak and slow with everything he did. I ended up calling him Private Pyle and told him a line similar to one in Full Metal Jacket that he moves like old people make sweet, sweet love. In September I hired a 54 retiree that shows up everyday and works his butt off. He has his limitations, but I get that. I have him lined up for this next season and I told him that I will be looking for another retiree so they can split the hours (15-20hrs each per week)


I think some of it’s luck. I had a college kid work for me over the summer who was great. He was studying architecture so he couldn’t work for me during the year so I tried hiring some other college kids and they were all awful. Always had some frat thing to do. No motivation.

My most recent (and best) hire is married with a child and he absolutely busts his ■■■ for me. It’s great. Not sure how I lucked out but glad I did.


They’re the best. A dying generation with work ethic. The two guys, Bill and Bill, I kid you not, retired from GM, have been best friends for 40+ years, and will work 20 hours a week on something until the day they die. They’d probably work 60 hours a week as long as they could work together and mess with each other.

Those two are a goldmine. The other guy, Interstate battery retiree, has a little hispanic helper who he pays to mow his lawn and do stuff around the house, but they became buddies and work together on odd stuff even outside of the 10-20 hours I give them. I just have convince his wife that working in retirement is good for him. Lol

They’re all awesome though. Couldn’t be happier.


That’s what I need! They just passed a bill here in IL that will move minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next few years. So paying someone $16-20 an hour may not work out here before long. Why go work “hard” when you can stock shelves in the AC for about the same.


That’s the kind of work that’ll slowly kill a union retiree. They need dirt and grime and sweat and would probably do it for free before they would take $15 to stock shelves. $15 to get dirty, joke around, a close out a day in reverse of how they started it is just bonus for Union guys.


I will hold my tongue on this one lol

Lets just say not all union workers are created equal and that sometimes the union likes to protect guys who do nothing / sleep on the job…

Unions definitely have their place and I grew up in a union worker family.


Me too. There are a couple of those in our area too, but by in large… union guys and gals thrive on grease, dirt, and structure.