Homeowners who need air conditioning or furnace repair would be wise to consider what those in the industry have to say on the topic. The Manpower Group conducted a 2014 survey on talent shortage within all industries, and found that skilled trades were the most difficult to fill. HVAC repair and installation falls into that category, which is not good news for homeowners looking for a skilled, local professional to take care of their heating and cooling needs. In order to find out exactly what the best practices are, or should be, for hiring HVAC contractors, a Michigan news organization undertook a survey of professionals to learn ways to find the cream of the crop.
At the top of the list came word-of-mouth referrals, networking and internal job boards. With the help of Lee Hecht Harrison, a worldwide talent development company, online interviews were conducted with over 200 human resources managers and recruiters. The goal was to pinpoint the most effective hiring practices. However, even with job boards still taking up space, the trend is to use social media to find candidates.
A Return to the Good Old Days
Word-of-mouth referrals are nothing new, and for decades have persisted as the best means of finding top talent. However, in today’s digital world, it’s often done via email and networking sites. These referrals usually come from established contractors who may know another candidate from trade school, previous jobs and the like. They know what their employers want and have an in when they find it.
Looking directly at local and national trade schools is another way to lure in top talent. These candidates are equipped with the latest knowledge, are hungry for a good job and are dedicated in a way only new professionals can be. The great find in this survey was that the vast majority of HVAC companies require comprehensive background checks, screens and interviews. They want to make sure their skill sets, background and personality are the right fit for the company as well as the clients. Written and oral exams as well as team interviews are common.
What’s in Demand
Beyond technical skills, the No. 1, in-demand trait is being a team player with great communication skills. The major qualities that would lead to immediate disqualification include unprofessional attitudes, lack of ability to explain circumstances in laymen’s terms, the inability to say “I don’t know” and dishonesty. As part of the interview, some require final candidates to put in a day on the job to see how they really perform.
HVAC companies and managers are looking for good people, and they understand that they get what they pay for. This solid approach benefits everyone, including the customer. Find out what superior repair technicians can do today by calling your local Sandy Heating & Air Conditioning team.