Recently there have been a number of media stories promoting the Tampa Bay area as a great place to find a new job in 2019!  This all sounds fabulous until you look at our current unemployment rate of 3.0%. If you are a hiring manager or business owner the fundamental question you are likely asking yourself is this: “Hiring was tough in 2018, what can I do this year to make it better for me?” Here are some suggestions to consider.


My son plays basketball and the message he hears routinely while shooting the ball is that he needs to shoot quickly, but in rhythm. Don’t rush the shot, don’t over think the shot, just trust your form.  The same is also true for hiring.  You don’t want to rush and you don’t want to delay. You want to be efficient in your efforts and trust your instincts. If adding staff is a high priority for you, and the job market continues to be as tight as it is, here are 3 things I would highly recommend:

  1. Streamline your hiring process – When you get the person to your facility for a face to face interview, get them in front of the right people then. Do not think you can wait or delay the hiring process. Candidates have too many options to wait for you.
  2. Sell the candidate – In a normal market when there is a balance between candidates and open positions, you have the flexibility to structure an interview to determine how a specific candidate can help your business. Today, however, that dynamic has flipped. You need to sell your candidates on how their career objectives can be improved by moving to your business. Why should they join you over the other companies who wish to interview them?
  3. Don’t go cheap – This is a classic supply vs. demand discussion. When supply is low, demand is high. When demand is high, so is cost. Do your research into what the market rates are for the positions you need to fill. We all need to follow our budgets, but we also need to make sure we are realistic in our expectations.


It has become normal for recruiters like us to look at the personal brand of the candidates that we are interviewing. What type of presence, if any, do they have on social media? Does that presence match the type of employee you are looking for?  What many employers aren’t realizing yet is that candidates are doing the exact same thing to them.  They are looking at Glassdoor, Google Reviews, websites, social media, etc. What is being said there about your company matters. While you may not agree with everything that is being said about your business, you still need to pay attention to it because it matters to candidates.  Work to put your brand in the best possible light.


My business primarily deals with smaller businesses. More often than not the owners/hiring managers will tell us they don’t have time to train a new person. Ideally speaking then, they want a person who can walk into the position and be productive.  In a perfect world, we all want that. But is it realistic? The fundamental question you will have now is what hurts you worse? Having the position open or training a quality individual to do the role?  Both have tangible and intangible costs to you. From our perspective, the #1 issue we hear from employers is that they want people who are dependable, reliable and trustworthy.  So it stands to reason if you find a quality person and they require some training in this market, hire them yesterday. The long-term benefit to your company is likely better than the short-term pain of training.

At PrideStaff St. Pete/Clearwater we routinely work in the Tampa Bay area with clients, and are happy to meet with any business to discuss hiring objectives to see if we can be a benefit to you. To learn more about us, please go to

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