HIRING A NEW EMPLOYEE
Selecting the right person for the job, one who is fully qualified and one who is a good fit with your team, is critical. To assist you in reaching this goal, we are providing a step-by-step hiring guide for you to follow.
The best first step in this process would be to carefully consider your staffing needs to determine which position(s) you wish to fill.
Filling an Existing Vacancy
Before you can fill a position that is currently vacant, you will first need to consult with your financial analyst/manager to ensure that the position is appropriately budgeted. Additionally, you may need to submit a Request for Freeze Exemption Form, based on the status of the District’s hiring freeze.
Requesting to Create and Fill a New Position or Reclassify an Existing Vacancy
You will need to complete a Position Information Form identifying the duties of the position along with your department’s organization chart to be studied by our Classification and Compensation Department. You will most likely have to complete a Request for Freeze Exemption Form as well.
Once you have submitted the required forms and have gotten appropriate approvals, you can move on in the hiring process.
Once the position is approved, you will be able to fill your position. To fill most positions, you will work directly with our Classified Employment Services Branch (CESB). CESB will forward the names of candidates eligible to fill the vacancy. As the Hiring Department, you will set up and conduct interviews, and ultimately choose a well-qualified candidate to fill your vacancy. If there are no candidates who are eligible for hire for the vacant position, you will work with the Talent Acquisition and Selection Branch to recruit candidates to fill the vacancy. Note: In some cases, there may be a re-employment list for the job classification within which the vacant position exists. In this case, CESB will automatically place the top person on the re-employment list into the vacant position.
For some school-based positions such as Campus Aide, School Supervision Aide, Community Representative, Education Aide, and Instructional Aide, the site will directly recruit candidates to fill their vacancies. Often times you will be able to identify individuals who may be interested in working at your school site by reaching out to the local community, placing ads using sources that target individuals in the local community, or consulting with current school-based personnel to find recommendations. The local Personnel Commission Employment Office may be able to assist you as well.
The interview process is a critical one as this is when you will identify the individual to whom a job offer will be made.
Tips on Preparing for the Interview
- Review the job description for the job vacancy that you intend to fill.
- List the specific duties of the vacant position and determine the skill set necessary to perform these duties.
- Draft a set of standard job-related questions you will ask each candidate during the interview. These questions should cover important aspects related to the job and be written to allow you to assess each candidate’s set of job-related skills. Additionally, they should be designed to obtain examples of what an individual did in similar situations in the past. Remember that there must be a legitimate business reason to ask each of the questions.
- Determine factors that will differentiate between successful and unsuccessful job performance. These will be used as benchmarks against which you will compare each candidate.
- Gather candidate background information such as their resume and application. You can obtain these documents from the Employment Services Branch.
Tips on Conducting the Interview
The hiring manger may conduct the interview alone or as part of an interview panel. (The panel should contain no more than three interviewers.)
- From the beginning of the interview, be sure to build rapport with the candidate.
- Keep the tone of the interview to be more like a conversation, not an interrogation.
- Be sure to avoid asking any illegal questions. The best way to ensure this is to ask only questions that relate to the job for which you are interviewing.
- Make sure that you are always in control of the interview.
- During the interview, focus on comparing the background and skills of the candidates you interview with the benchmarks of successful job performance you defined prior to the interview.
Reaching a Hiring Decision
- Once you have considered the job-related qualifications of all of the candidates you have interviewed, compare and contrast candidates. Evaluate candidates against the benchmarks that were deemed most important prior to the interviews and reach a decision to hire the candidate who can best fulfill the needs of your specific vacancy.
It is strongly recommended that the hiring department conduct reference checks prior to extending an offer of employment. The purpose of reference checks is to verify facts stated by a candidate during the interview, to clarify any concerns you have about a candidate’s background or qualifications, and to validate your assessment. The objective of a reference check is to obtain information on the individual's work performance and on personal characteristics that affect (positively or negatively) the individual's suitability for the particular position sought.
External Candidate Reference Checks: While the Talent Acquisition and Selection Branch does solicit references for external candidates, the information obtained is generic in nature. It is therefore recommended that the hiring department contact references as well.
Who should be contacted to provide a reference? Contact individuals that were provided by the candidate as well as current or former supervisors/managers. Typically, the candidate’s current supervisor/manager will be able to provide the most reliable information. Be sure you have the candidate’s permission to contact his or her current supervisor so that you don't jeopardize their current position.
What information should be requested? Prior to contacting the references, make a list of questions that you would like to ask. The questions must be job-related and specific to the requirements of the job.
How should the reference check be conducted? Make sure to identify yourself and the purpose of the call; also, assure your contact that all information that is discussed will remain confidential. Occasionally, the individual that you contact for a reference may be hesitant to provide information. If this happens, you may offer to send a signed form showing that the candidate indicated his or her permission to obtain references on his or her behalf.
Continue by describing the position for which the candidate is being considered, including the specific responsibilities of the job and the skill set necessary to be successful in this position. Be sure to ask if your contact believes that the candidate would be effective in the target position and ask follow-up questions to obtain specific information/examples in support of the recommendation (or lack of recommendation). Always include in your reference check the question, "Would you re-employ this individual?". Often this question brings forth information that you were unable to get with other questions. Of course, at the conclusion of the communication, be sure to thank your contact.
Internal Candidate Reference Checks: When considering a current LAUSD employee as a final candidate for a position, you should contact the candidate’s current supervisor to obtain information about the employee’s present work performance. Be sure to advise the candidate that you will be speaking with his or her supervisor, before contacting that individual for a reference.
Job Offer: Once you are comfortable that the selection that you have made is a good one, re-connect with the Assignment Technician in the Employment Services Branch to let them know that you would like them to make an offer. The Assignment Technician will then contact the candidate and make arrangements for any new-hire processing or paperwork that must be completed. The Assignment Technician will advise you as to when the candidate will be able to start in his or her new position.
ON-BOARDING A NEW EMPLOYEE
On-boarding your new employee is an important step in the hiring process. It is the process through which new hires are welcomed and integrated into their new work environment. This includes introducing new employees to both the performance and the social aspects of the job.