June 29, 2021

A Neat Program To Hire An Experienced Glazier

By Paul Bieber

The other day, I ran into a gentleman who worked in a large machine shop, making high-tech metal equipment and he told me this story. A month ago, his company had an open house for all of their past employees and they invited each one personally via a letter and a follow-up phone call.

The purpose of the open house was to try and rehire those folks who had left the company looking for greener pastures. They spiffed up the place and had a few carefully selected, current forepersons join the team at the Saturday afternoon event. They had about 10 people show up and talked with each one individually about rejoining the company. Son-of-a-gun if they didn’t rehire five people who thought the world was better outside the company but realized it was better at their original job.

So what does this mean to you in your glass business? Do the same thing! Invite only the past employees you would want to rehire. Depending on the size of your company, you may have three or four people visiting, or you might have 10. It doesn’t matter. Have food and soft drinks and enough of your current folks to talk with each person in depth. How do they like their current job? Was it everything that was promised when they left?

In the past year or two, I am betting you have increased your wages quite a bit and probably improved your benefits package. In a not-so-subtle way, explain these changes to each person and determine if they would reconsider coming home. If they accepted your invitation to revisit, the basic premise in my mind is that they are curious enough to see how the place is running now and would be open to considering a rehire.

This will only work if your wage scale and benefits have improved in the past couple of years. I am not saying you have to pay the highest wages, but you have to be competitive—the same with your benefits. Also, you might want to consider a rehire bonus. If they return to your company, after 90 days, they would receive a serious bonus, in the ballpark of $1,000. This is a lot less expensive than paying a recruiter to bring you a rookie.

So, this is one simple idea that will cost you some O/T for your foremen and the cost of a nice spread for food. You may just get an experienced glazier or two to come back home. And don’t forget to invite your office folks and estimators as well. Good hunting.