The coronavirus outbreak has impacted almost every business. For many, it has meant a complete shutdown. But the quarantines and lockdowns won’t last forever. Eventually, the economy will start to get back to normal, and you need to be ready to restart operations. In other words, you need to prepare to hire again. 

Up-to-date statistics are hard to find due to the fast-moving nature of the coronavirus response. Still, it’s clear that the business impact of the outbreak has been extreme. According to a study released by MetLife and U.S. Chamber of Commerce in early April, almost one in four small businesses (24%) had temporarily closed its doors by that point due to the COVID-19 restrictions. Another 40% were expected to close by the middle of the month. 

Even at the low point in the economic cycle, though, you need to prepare for the upswing. You might be closed now, but you should already be plotting your return to full operations.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you get ready to hire again:

Stay Informed 

The coronavirus crisis is a fast-changing event. The shape of the outbreak and the details of government policy change on seemingly daily basis. Knowing the most recent information is crucial for crafting your post-virus plan.  

Stay up-to-date on the latest COVID-19 information, with an eye toward creating your own estimated timeline. This will help you set realistic goals and let you know when to start making substantial steps toward a return. 

Make a Plan 

Don’t try to improvise your way through a resumption of normal business. There are many factors to keep in mind, and may simultaneous concerns to juggle as you restart your hiring process. It’s in your best interest to make a plan. Put together a step-by-step program to get your recruitment back on track. 

Get Creative 

Of course, you can’t count on your plan to unfold completely as you initially envisioned it would. As we’ve said, conditions are changing fast. The transition back to normal business operations is likely to be choppy. As a result, you have to stay flexible. You’ll need to devise creative responses to a highly volatile situation.  

Launch Your Search Early 

The economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak has left an unusually large number of workers waiting on the sidelines. With unemployment possibly headed to levels over 20%, there are a lot of qualified people looking for a job.  

You don’t want to be the last company to start looking. The lifting lockdowns and quarantines will act like the firing of a starter’s pistol. The race will be on. Every company will scramble to recruit the available talent. Get ahead of this rush by starting your search early. 

Start with People You Know 

Trying to resume your operations in an expedited and orderly way presents a major challenge. You want to bring in people quickly so that you don’t lose any more time than you already have. But, at the same time, the employees you hire need experience in order to ensure that your business can reopen with a minimum of headaches. 

For this reason, start your hiring process with people you know. Contact former employees or people who have been through your recruitment process already. This will shorten timelines and give you confidence about the people you engage. 

Consider Contract/Freelance Work 

You might need a transition period as you get operations back on track. Handling this might require more people than normal, or might call for skills you don’t use in your routine business. You don’t necessarily need full-time employees to fill these roles.  

Consider using part-time contractors or freelancers to aid in the early stages. If they work out, you can consider full-time positions. Otherwise, you minimize your commitments and control your risks during the crucial process of resuming operations. 

Conducting a recruitment operation during crisis conditions requires creativity and a deep knowledge of the hiring process. You can get both by partnering with a top recruiter, like SmartTalent. They can provide the insight you need to weather this difficult situation. 

Contact SmartTalent today to learn more.