As most small business owners will attest, human capital is their most important investment. Other than the solo practitioner, entrepreneurs depend on a competent and ethical–though modest in number–workforce to manage operations; serve clients and customers; and tend to company infrastructure.

Recruiting associates for such an enterprise is not as easy as it looks to the casual observer. Some prospects make good interviewees, but poor employees. Resumes do not always depict a background accurately. A sense of urgency on the part of the owner can also skew the hiring process in favor of expediency. 

However, using reliable sources for finding great employees can offset these hazards:

1. Use Agencies to Find Staff

Tried and true resources for employers to find people in whom they can place confidence are staffing agencies. Also known as search firms, recruiting agencies or hiring services, these organizations vary one to another. Some provide temporary workers whom the employer can bring in on a trial basis. Some specialize in clerical and unskilled labor while others are profession and industry-specific: is an example of a staffing agency servicing a specific sector of the market.

Others concentrate on management and executive recruiting. Whatever the needs of a small business owner, it is likely that a staffing agency can assist because it performs much of the evaluation and vetting that a human resources department of a larger firm would do. Of course, this service is not free. On the other hand, the time it saves entrepreneurs in headhunting and researching can be money well spent. 

2. Use Online Recruitment Tools

With the advent of the internet, job-seekers discovered a way to get resume exposure without mailing out scores of them every week.,, ZipRecruiter and the like allow one resume to be seen by countless employers.

A number of these sites function as basic job boards but others are more sophisticated. Businesses looking for able and honest workers can now post detailed descriptions of their job openings as well as links to their company websites.

Since the prospects essentially fill out applications and attach resumes online, the site administrators install algorithms to verify that each application is complete before the employer can see it. This is another way to maximize efficiency. Search firms, by the way, often use an online presence to bring people aboard.

3. Use Social Media

LinkedIn and other social media outlets allow managers to peruse talent pools in certain jobs without any formal contact. In this venue, prospective hires are not necessarily looking for work yet they may be an excellent fit for the opening. Social media gives searchers a sense of a prospect’s fitness without requiring formal application and interview.

4. Use Blogging and Content Marketing

Regularly updating the business website with new and interesting content attracts others in the business. One may just be the perfect hire. You never know if something you post or publish encourages talent to seek out employment at your place of business.

While the age of automation is seemingly upon us, humans continue to be the most vital part of most business operations. In order to run your business the best way possible, you need the best people.