An agency of the Ministry of Industry, Investment & Commerce, the JBDC is Jamaica’s premier business development organisation working collaboratively with government, private sector, as well as, academic, research and international communities.



Mobile (Digicel)


14 Camp Road, Kingston

Having the right staff complement to undertake the operations of any organisation is critical to its growth and the level of success it can deliver, for these reasons employers are being urged to have a well-thought-out hiring strategy in place.

Since it is almost impossible to retain the same staff members for the entire life of a business, replenishing the workforce becomes mandatory as people quit or retire, and in some other instances, may have their services disengaged.

According to global human resource (HR) experts, “making the wrong decision in the hiring process can lead to a lot of extra stress, hindering the prospects for growth and development of the business”. They opine that only in hiring the right person can a business be able to build its brand and develop a unique customer experience. As such managers and business owners are urged to seriously examine the impact a potential employee will have on their operation and consider this very carefully during the hiring process.

Joni-Gaye Cawley, consultant at the Human Resource Management Association of Jamaica (HRMAJ), speaking at a recent business forum hosted by the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC), said that a strategic plan of action is very useful in properly fulfilling the staffing needs and desires of any business, especially those focused on securing growth.

“You need a strong hiring strategy to build an engaged workforce and one that will give your business a competitive advantage. A strong part of a successful hiring strategy lies within understanding your specific hiring challenges,” she told entrepreneurs.

In crafting useful hiring strategies, Cawley said there were several things to consider by employers, particularly in relation to their needs, mission and vision, financial position, among other factors specific to the business’ outlook. 

“In identifying your hiring needs, ask yourself what are the long-term plans for expansion and what skills and experiences you may need. This, as you also consider how quickly you need to expand and the number of employees you need to accomplish this,” she advised.

President of the Jamaica Employers Federation David Wan agreed that having a hiring strategy was definitely important to businesses and must also be driven by the company’s strategic plans.

“If it’s a young company trying to establish market share then that staff should be very business development- and marketing-focused. However, if it’s a mature company with established presence then maybe the focus should be more on productivity and efficiency which are needed to drive profits,” he told Sunday Finance.

As the local job market rebounds and unemployment levels trend down, employers across various industry groups, especially those having high labour demands, may now need to begin an assessment of how their hires are being done.

Wan, in noting a correlation between the type of industry and the worker it requires, said that this could also help to shape the hiring strategy different employers may seek to have in place.

“If you’re in manufacturing where there’s minimal interface with the public, the type of strategy needed in this case may be different than if you’re selling high-end sports cars. For the latter, the employer may want to recruit staff who can relate well with customers who are often demanding about quality, service, etc, vis-a-vis the more hands-on and technically skilled worker needed for manufacturing,” he stated.



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