How to Recruit for Improved Client Service

As a veterinary practice owner or practice manager, you already know that one of the most essential skills you need from everyone on your team is service. Simply put, if you’re not consistently delivering a positive client experience with each and every interaction, you will not be able to achieve sustainable success. The best way to ensure this level of consistency is to start by recruiting the right individuals to join your team.

To follow are few tips for how can you deliberately attract and hire the candidates who will help maximize your client service levels.

Be upfront and crystal clear in your job descriptions.

Ideally, anyone applying for a job in the veterinary industry will already know the importance of good service. Unfortunately, as you’ve probably already discovered, this isn’t always the case. To avoid wasting your time with candidates who aren’t on the same page as you, set the stage by being as specific as possible about the expectations you have. Make it crystal clear that you are only interested in working with top-notch, service-focused individuals.

Look for candidates that believe in a customer service philosophy.

In other words, don’t just look for people who list “customer service” as a skill or prior job title. Look for someone who embodies a customer-focused mentality. You will see evidence of this on resumes wherever a candidate lists ways that he or she has helped others. It doesn’t have to be external, either, as long as it’s work they’ve done in service of others, including their colleagues.

Incorporate your core values into your hiring process.

What does your practice stand for? If you want to be successful with your recruiting and build a team of service-minded individuals, you must look for candidates who have core values that align with yours. And the best way to do this is to incorporate your practice’s core values into the hiring process. Don’t just cross your fingers and hope your new employees will adapt to your values. Make sure they have them already.

Use behavioral-style assessments to find candidates with the right qualities and soft skills.

If you want to elevate your service levels, poor bedside manner isn’t an option. That’s why it’s important to dig deeper and assess more than just clinical skills during the recruiting process. Start by using assessments that are designed to help you find candidates whose personalities and behaviors match your service-centered culture. If you really want to find a good match, have your best employee take the assessment and use his or her results as a baseline to compare your candidates against.

Ask your candidates to define client service.

If you are hiring to improve service, it’s absolutely imperative that you ask each candidate to describe how they define that service. While there may be no right or perfect answer to this question, there most certainly are wrong answers, and when you get one, you’ll know it. If an interviewee can’t provide a suitable answer, it’s probably time to scratch them off the list and move on to the next.

Hire for personality.

Chances are you’ve heard the old expression: “Hire for attitude, train for skill,” but the truth is, when it comes to recruiting for improved service, it’s not just about attitude. It’s about the actual personality of your candidates that matters most, because that will determine whether or not the new employee will fit in with your team and your culture. As you’re evaluating applicants, ask yourself whether they have a personality that will meld with your existing staff.

Ask about the future.

Another insightful question to ask during an interview is where a candidate sees him or herself in the next three years. It may seem cliché, but the answer to this question can provide a glimpse into the applicant’s goals and ambitions. Again, look for answers that demonstrate the key characteristics you are seeking, such as empathy and attention. This will help you narrow down those candidates that most closely align with the service-focused culture you are looking to build.

If you are trying to improve your client service levels, it starts with the hiring process. The seven tips above should help you hone in on the individuals who will help drive your practice forward in the right direction.

Still struggling to locate the right service-minded individuals to complete your team? We can help! Contact us today and let’s discuss how we can find the perfect fit for your staff and your practice goals.