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Expertise in a Package: A Consulting Blog

What do you do when your business needs input from an expert, but you don't have the funds to hire a full-time employee with that specific expertise? You hire a consultant, of course! You can find consultants who specialize in everything from accounting to efficiency. Hire one for a week, or hire one for a year. They can perform the necessary duties and lend their expertise while they are there, and when they are done, they'll move on to another job. To learn more about consulting and the benefits of hiring a consultant, check out the articles on this website — they discuss a wide range of consulting-related topics.


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Expertise in a Package: A Consulting Blog

Staffing Agencies May Screen For Attitude And Demeanor When Placing Receptionists

by Carmen Fisher

Practical communication skills go a long way in an office environment. Managers hoping to meet company goals should take the lead and communicate speaking and writing needs to a staffing agency. When hiring administrative support staff, put a value on someone's internal and external communications skills. Looking at professional experience from a generalized perspective might not be enough. Ascertaining a prospective hire's communicative ability's skill level increases the chance of making the right selection. Since the process could prove difficult, asking an employment recruiter to screen would-be employees makes sense. And the screening work might be complicated.

A Receptionist and Communicator

After posting a job listing for a receptionist, resumes start flowing into the office. Applicants with one or two years of receptionist experience, combined with some administrative assistant experience, seem to meet the essential criteria for the job. The assessment might be correct, but reading a career bio still leaves some question marks. You may know the applicant spent a lot of time answering phones, but you don't know how they answered the phone. In some offices, the way someone picks up a phone means a lot.

The Tone of Voice and Demeanor

Callers may expect more than a superficial response when placing a call. A receptionist at a children's daycare center should be a bit upbeat and pleasant. Parents inquiring about daycare services probably might not like hearing a stern tone. Other companies may require the opposite approach. An accounting office probably wants someone with a more serious tone picking up incoming calls.

In-person demeanor also counts. As with phone duties, the person's attitude must fit the company. Someone with a stoic disposition may not be the best greeter at a nursing home but could be okay at a lawyer's office. Businesses seeking to hire a receptionist may realize these points. However, management might not be able to effectively screen employees. Outsourcing to a staffing agency potentially provides a solution.

The Screening and Testing Process

Staffing agencies often test an applicant's skills. Requesting a typing test is common, and clients could ask the agency to perform specialized tests, as well. To determine phone skills, a specialist could roleplay several calls with applicants. The specialist may then note attitude, authority, patience, and other traits. While not an entirely perfect process, running applicants through specialized tests reveals people in action. A resume, no matter how impressive, doesn't show someone doing a job.

Contact a staffing agency today to learn more.