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Recruiting and Staffing EPIDEMIC

small business staffing systems Oct 26, 2021

Staffing is an incredible burden to the restoration industry as a whole. But we can take solace in the fact that it's an epidemic and it is not sparing anyone, especially blue collar industries.

We actually did a podcast on this subject. It is definitely one of the most popular episodes to date. It is titled “I got 99 problems, and staffing is one”. 

We have also created a template for a recruiting and hiring process that you will be able to download for FREE at the end of this post. 

We talk with restoration companies every single day, and we hear the same thing from everyone in every corner of the country:

We can’t find help.

No one even applies.

If they apply, they are no call no show to the interview.

Its the same story!

What do we do?

Everyone is tired of hearing culture and money is the solution. 

But the truth is, these are big factors. The companies that we see thriving in this tumultuous time are companies that are paying well, and have great culture. 

Are they still impacted? Of course they are… they are operating at a fraction of their potential if they were fully staffed. 

They are maximizing their opportunities though. They are able to cherry pick the best customers and jobs. They are providing excellent service because they have excellent people. Excellent people help promote excellent culture. 

On the flip side of that conversation are the companies that are hiring any John or Jane Doe off the street that can make a mirror fog up. They are hiring machines that will let someone go as fast as they come in the door. They are always hiring because they get a couple of weeks out of sub par employees and they move on.

We can learn from both ends of the spectrum. Is there a middle ground? Of course. All the great companies are trying to find that balance. 



Here are 3 tips for recruiting:

  1. Focus on who the person is, and less on the skills that they have.
    • Always remember that the drying can be taught. Attitude, passion, and drive cannot be taught. 
    • Think outside the box. Try to find good people looking for a new opportunity
  2. Instead of having referral partners like plumbers for new business, consider who might be a good referral partner for talen
    • Look around a Chic Fil A next time. Notice the great service, but look at who the majority is that is working there. Its been said that Chic Fil A owners are often leaders in their churches and have connections with (or lead) youth groups. They have a constant stream of young, respectful talent. This is a great example of a referral network for talent. 
    • Would sponsoring a local high school football, baseball, softball team be a good referral source for your organization? Could you provide coolers or cups with your logo? Maybe your name on jerseys, and the opportunity to come to practices and talk about leadership and hard work, and become a mentor?
  3. Be willing to raise your prices so you can afford better employees that will provide the excellent service you demand for your clients. 
    • I know. Carriers and Adjusters will fight your wage rates. Let's be real though. If its not wage rates, they will fight you on another line item. Lol. That's just what they do.  By the way… you have permission to stop talking to carriers and tpas. Did you know that? We wrote a blog on this recently. You can find it here.
    • We help our clients learn a new way of on boarding clients that gets them on your side, and educates the client on how to push back on the carriers and TPAs on your behalf. (Hint: you have no legal or contractual obligation to speak to the carriers or TPAs… unless you are on a program, and thats a different conversation).
    • Chic Fil A and other companies with attractive jobs are paying up to $19/hour in some markets. In some cases there are fat sign on bonuses too. Yet the industry still wants to pay techs $12/hr to be on call to answer phones in the middle of the night, on weekends, and holidays to clean $h!t out of a crawlspace. 



Recruiting and hiring are a system just like every other part of your business.

Here at Restoration Advisers we have been urging our clients for quite some time to reduce their marketing spend for new business and reinvest those funds into a marketing campaign for new employees.
There is plenty of business. There is not enough help to perform all the work. You have to attract talent to your business to maximize your opportunities.

Here are a few tips for creating a sound recruiting and hiring system.

  1. Take the time to create a high impact job description. Think of it as an advertisement for the job. Don’t just include the necessary skills required for the job, but also what the role is accountable for. Knowing how an employee in this role will be measured is incredibly important to the recruiting process.  Be sure to verbiage that explains the overall employee experience is described throughout the job description.
  2. Create a job posting that showcases the opportunity a candidate has when coming on board with your company above and beyond just the role they are applying for. Be sure to include skills that they might acquire, or experiences that they might get. Also show them how they can advance with a clear career path laid out. 
  3. Have a plan for multiple leaders within your company to interview the candidates. Its important for the direct supervisor to have buy-in to the selection process. This promotes a culture of communication and openness. 
  4. One of the most underutilized portions of the hiring process is actually following up with references. Be sure to talk to every reference provided by the candidate. If you only get “yes candidate X worked for us” and nothing else… ask for other references. Try to get a good sense of who the person is from people in their circles. Family is ok… but there should be diversity in the relationships represented in the references. 
  5. Test the candidates knowledge that might pertain to the role they are applying for. Use a system like Trainual to have the quiz be automatically graded and scored. Speaking of Trainual, they have some other great hiring best practices.


We have developed a template for your recruiting and hiring process. You can download it here. Feel free to modify it to fit your needs. Let us know how it worked out, or if you’d like help figuring out a process that works for you.

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