Office Services positions are the backbone of businesses across North America. From administrative and customer service to office managers and bookkeepers, having talented professionals in these important positions is imperative to maintaining productivity, ensuring continued success, and creating a well-rounded environment for all your staff members. And while there has been a push for AI and automation in customer relations, consumers continually maintain that they have a better experience when they have access to actual employees. A study found that 69% of customers prefer speaking to a live agent, while 95% say customer service is crucial when deciding brand loyalty.
However, finding the right candidates to fit your culture and meet the needs of your organization takes more than posting on job boards and asking for referrals. It takes a team of highly skilled individuals screening for specific qualities needed to perform well in these critical roles. Maintaining a focus on the skills needed to have a successful office services team is the first step toward finding and hiring the best people for your organization.
Soft Skills Essential for Successful Teams
According to a survey by The Harris Poll commissioned by Express Employment Professionals, hiring for soft skills is essential in building a successful team. Among the top skills deemed essential or very important are dependability (90%), communication skills (89%), and a willingness to learn (88%). Other important skills companies look for include problem-solving skills (85%), adaptability (85%), critical thinking (84%), and initiative (84%). More than 7 in 10 feel fitting in with the company culture (79%), creativity (72%), and/or leadership skills (71%) are also of high importance.
Another study found that soft skills are the most important qualities hiring managers are looking for, as well. According to the Global Hiring Outlook, that while 80% of hiring managers say they plan to hire more workers, 40% of businesses anticipate difficulty finding workers with the right skills, and one-third of survey respondents say the skills gap is worse today than it was a year ago. This makes hiring for the right skills the most important challenge for hiring. The right combination of hard skills (technical skills, job-specific, training, etc.) and soft skills (personality traits, experience, communication skills, etc.) is needed for a qualified candidate.
Finding Candidates with the Right Soft Skills
The top three most desirable soft skills for employees that the Harris survey discovered, (dependability, strong communication skills, and a willingness to learn), all focus on specific traits that not only help the individual but also the organization as a whole run more effectively and efficiently. While the movement seen during the Great Resignation has slowed, and more companies are trying to do more with a smaller staff, having specific experience and training may not necessarily be as important as being flexible, moldable, and adaptable. Candidates who show up, are ready to hit the ground running, and are eager to learn new skills have a higher chance of succeeding in new roles than those who tend to be stuck in their ways. Other traits that the survey found that companies look in an ideal candidate is individuals who are willing to be reskilled and make a difference at an organization regardless of their role. These traits, such as problem-solving skills, adaptability, critical thinking, and initiative, are all crucial characteristics hiring managers look for in ideal candidates. Simply put, finding workers who possess the right soft skills are more desirable than those who may have more experience and training but who don’t fit this mold.
Know What You Want in a Candidate, Train for Experience
One of the best ways to ensure your organization recruits top office services employees is to team up with staffing agencies like Express Employment Professionals. By using an ISO-approved process, Express’ employment experts find candidates in Office Services roles who not only fit your requirements but also your company’s culture. Whether you need a contract worker or a new full-time member for your team, Express is your local hiring solution.
Your local Express team will manage the recruiting and selection process for you and present you with only the best people for your business needs. Each applicant goes through a multi-step, ISO 9001:2000 certified selection process, including: Application Information Verification, Interview, Skills Evaluation, Employment Verification, Hiring Decision, and Matching and Assignment to Meet each Client’s Needs.
Each of these steps is crucial in helping you find skilled, qualified employees. But the most important part of our process is finding the right person who not only fits the job, but your unique company culture, as well.
What traits do you look for when hiring for Office Services jobs? How has using a staffing company helped you recruit and retain qualified staff? Let us know in the comments section below!