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The most important thing we have to do at Leverage after assisting our clients is hiring as many, highly talented people that we can find. It drives our business, enables us to serve the needs of our clients, and it’s how we grow and learn. Most businesses have to deal with hiring, and most have parts of their process that need improvement. We currently have a team of 60 people in 14 different time zones. We’ve tried a dozen different recruiting platforms, applicant tracking systems, and hiring apps and none of them ever completely met our needs. So we did what we always do in those situations, we built it ourselves with Trello, Zapier, and Wufoo, for free.
Interested candidates visit our application page where they can learn a bit about the job and apply. The main thing we ask if that they give a response to a real task we’ve had where the client needs help mailing some envelopes. It’s what we call a “one and done” task, meaning a VA can pick it up, provide a single and complete answer, and the task is done. This particular question doesn’t seem tricky but it’s very telling when we see how people respond. In addition we ask them to submit a Youtube video of themselves, with very little direction, to get a sense of how they present themselves.
When they submit the Wufoo form, Zapier automates the process of creating a new “card” in our Personnel Trello board for the candidate.
The same automation also posts the persons name, task response, and their youtube video to a special Slack channel so we can review easily.
If we think the candidate looks good, we simply drag the card from the New Applicant list on the Trello Board to the HireSelect Offered list. Another Zapier automation will then email them from our company email address with a link to take our personality profiling and skills assessment test, provided by HireSelect.
We really like HireSelect because it does a specific assessment for the type of work and mindset we want to hire for. It tests candidates problem solving ability, willingness to work in a team and take direction from others, even their level of competitiveness. Here’s what a report looks like:
If they meet our baseline of 60% or better on both batteries than they move forward to a live, 10 minute interview. By dragging their card to the Interview Offered list, Zapier generates an email to them with a Calendly link allowing them to schedule the interview at their convenience with one of our three team members that does interviews.
Our interviews are 10 minutes, we conduct them using our favorite video conference software, Zoom. All calls are recorded and shared with our team for approval and improvement. We ask only four questions, two softballs, and two hardballs.
- How did you hear about Leverage and what interested you in working for the company?
- Tell me about your past relevant experience?
- Tell me about a time you messed up at work, and how you handled it?
- If we don’t hire you, why do you think that will be?
That last one knocks out the most confident interviewer and I have no problem sharing it with everyone hear because no amount of prep will help you answer that question, in the moment, under pressure, with clarity. I love that question. My favorite answer so far… “because I’m pretty weird and maybe that threw you off.” We hired that person.
The Background Check
The people who work for us may end up handling sensitive information for a multi-national corporation so thorough background checks are a must. For this we use a service called Onfido which can automate background checks in any country in the world. Once again, dragging a candidates card to the Background Check list calls on the API for Onfido to generate the request for a check.
Everyone who works for us is an independant contractor. So once they pass their background check, their card is moved to the Documents Sent list. Zapier sends an email to the candidate with a link to sign documents on RightSignature. With RightSignature we can take our Contractor Agreement, Non-Disclosure Agreement, and Tax Forms and create form whereby the user HAS to sign all required parts otherwise they can’t complete the form.
Once they sign that, Zapier saves the file to Dropbox for our bookeeper to keep as a record. It also moves their card to the next list on the Trello board, Documents Sent — Onboarded. At this point they are hired and can begin their training.
This generates an email with instructions on how to get setup on all of our software platforms and directs them to another Trello Board with all of our training material. They are placed in a training channel on Slack where they get to work on real tasks and interact with them team. The goal is that after two weeks in training we’ll know if the candidate is ready to be a full team member of if it’s not a good fit for them. The whole process results in a team that works cohesively, at a very high level, and accomplishes unprecedented results.
If at any point in the process we decide not to move forward with the applicant we can archive their Trello card, which triggers an email to them through Zapier, informing them that it’s not a good fit and we wish them luck. In addition, if at some point a VA decides to leave the company or they get fired, we simply move their card to the Former Worker list, which generates a card for a manager to remove them from our systems, then a day later it emails the candidate to inform them of the decision.
I built what I needed to solve my own problem, the whole process took me about 3 hours and this system is completely flexible and applicable to any business. You can add, remove, or even shift around any phase of the hiring process and you’ll be able to take candidate through a hiring, onboarding, and training process in a way that is congruent with your team values, efficient for the candidate, and effective for your needs.
We’re Here To Help
Since I started talking about this process with our mastermind and bootcamp programs, as well as our podcasts, there’s been significant interest in having this setup for various clients. I believe I’ve given you enough information in this article to set this up for yourself, but if you need a little help, the Leverage team can do it for you.
Sponsored posts do not reflect the opinion of EBB.