When Is It Time To Hire?

How do you determine when it is time to hire? It’s not always clear, but there are ways to tell if it’s the correct time to bring new staff on-board.


First of all, when is it time to NOT hire? Is everyone saying they’re too busy and wanting to hand off things that they dislike, without having overloaded calendars? If your only indicator is staff coming to you and saying, “We’re too busy – can you hire someone?” then it is not time to hire.

We need to look at all your staff calendars, staff efficiency, staff Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), your company strategic plan and goals, your company budget, and your business plan forecast to make this decision.


  • When it fits in the budget. Use a duplicate version of your company budget named “New Hire Scenario” or something similar to see how your revenue, expenses, and profit will be affected. Obviously we don’t want to add an expense – we want a Return On Investment (ROI) at least four times the cost of the new hire.
  • When you (or other needle movers) cannot do your regular Most Valuable Activities (MVA) tasks because you’re doing tasks that other people should be doing (administrative tasks, for example).
  • When it fits with your strategic goals and plan.
  • If staff are legitimately overloaded (make sure they’re actually being effective and on task, using their calendars).
  • You NEVER want to have to find work for the new hire to do, so you must make sure that you are hiring someone to do tasks that will make you four times what they cost you, OR allow them to relieve someone else’s hours to do so.

PRO TIP: Review everyone’s job descriptions and calendars. Make sure that all your staff have clear roles and goals. Make sure all of your staff are focusing on MVAs and needle movers, things that have them hit their KPIs. Many times when we look in my clients’ business and current teams’ job descriptions, we discover there are redundancies of tasks or things that need to be fixed. Revamping your staff tasks can eliminate the need for a new hire! Check out this blog for a more in-depth look at this!

Watch your office/leadership team to producers ratio – you don’t want to be too admin heavy! This eats up your profit, and can be because of under-producers, so make sure everyone is using their calendars AND hitting their KPIs. You also need to be sure you are hitting your strategic plan and budget (or WILL be once you have this new hire).

Consult your strategic plan – are you moving towards your goal with this hire? Remember, if you’re not moving towards your goals, you’re moving away from them.


Have a very clear roles and goals for your new hire. Posting an ad is a huge waste of time if you haven’t done the work and know the activities, skills and experience required (which you’ll get from the very complete and accurate job description with KPIs). If you decided to hire, here’s a video on an important question to ask any new hire.

Don’t forget to make the onboarding, training and “indoctrination – culture statements” awesome! Calendarize each step and which team is involved in supporting them.

PRO TIP: Using a checklist for onboarding is really helpful – check off each task as they master it.

Hiring staff can be challenging and stressful, so you want to make sure you do it right to minimize the stress and maximize the profitability for everyone concerned. Remember that you may not need to hire at all if you follow the steps above. Your existing staff, your new hire, your overall business – everyone will benefit if you proceed carefully with every new person you bring on board.

Business can be better™ and it should be!

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Kelli-Rae Tamaki

Kelli-Rae is truly passionate about successful business, and believes it can always be better, which is why she has spent 22 years studying, running, coaching and consulting with businesses, just like yours.