How much would a lousy employee cost your consignment store?

A few hundred dollars? A few thousand? Think again.

According to Forbes, the average cost of a bad employee is about 30% of their first year’s salary.

How’s that for startling?

It’s especially pronounced in the world of consignment stores. After all, consignment store employees need a particular skill set.  

They need to be organized, high-energy, and great at sales. They also need to possess a thick skin and the ability to deal with the daily chaos inherent in the consignment industry.  

These are just a few of the reasons it’s so important to get the perfect person to work in your store.

Unfortunately, that’s also easier said than done. As a consignment store owner, you know how tempting it can be to hire the employee that works “right now,” rather than the one that’s the best long-term fit. And you’re not alone.

Finding the right employees can be overwhelming. Fortunately, following these simple steps is a great way to get started finding the best employees for your consignment business.

3 Tips to Hire Better Consignment Store Employees

A great employee keeps your store running properly. In fact, your employees may be the only things separating you from negative online reviews! Beyond this, great employees are also your right-hand people, keeping your store open, safe, and customer-friendly. Here are a few tips to find your perfect matches:

1. Hire Outside Your Comfort Zone

Many store owners hire friends or family, friends of employees, or frequent customers just because it’s comfortable. They know these people.

Unfortunately, this is almost guaranteed to lead to disaster.

When you hire a new employee, the budding relationship needs to be a professional one. You’re the boss; they’re the employee – plain and simple.

If you hire someone with whom you have a pre-existing relationship, these lines can get blurry.  With this in mind, stay away from hiring people you already know and extend your applicant pool to people who really want the job.

2. Update Your Hiring Application

Lots of applications fall short of the mark.

In most cases, they only ask about past job experience. Unfortunately, this doesn’t provide a comprehensive picture of a person.

To narrow down your applicant pool and make your interviews more productive, update your applications to ask specific questions, like how a potential employee would deal with certain situations or what they’d do if the store is understaffed on a busy day.

The would-be employee’s answers to these questions answers will not only demonstrate the employee’s critical thinking ability but will also give you an idea of how they’d respond to adverse situations.

Need some ideas about which questions to include in your application? Here are some smart ideas.

3. Change the Interview Process

Once you’ve narrowed down your applications, it’s time to interview your top applicants. This is a critical part of the hiring process, so it’s important to pay close attention to how you do it.

One great tip for consignment store owners is to take them through your daily routine with you.

For an atypical process, interview your applicants as you price and place new inventory.  Have them interact with your employees on the sales floor and give them simple in-store tasks to complete.

While most people can pitch themselves well in a standard interview, a “working interview” will help you get an idea of how the would-be employee will fit with the rest of your organization.

Better Employees Make a More Successful Consignment Store

If your store is the ship, your employees are the deckhands who help it sail along without incident. While hiring is a difficult thing to master, finding the right employees for your consignment store is a worthwhile process and can save you time, energy, and money down the road.

Do you have an employee that stands out from the rest? Did you hire someone who goes above and beyond for your brand? If so, tell us in the comments how you found them!