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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, I have a business question regarding hiring my first employee.

Unfortunately, my truck was wrecked by a drunk driver on St. Patricks Day and I am having major issues with insurance and don't currently have the credit built up to lease anything (due to age and lack of credit history). I'm also overworked due to too many jobs coming in at once and rather than stress about everything too much, I'm taking this as an opportunity to investigate the possibility of bringing on my first employee. I've been doing 60-100 hour weeks for nearly 8 months so I believe I can support a worker now and actually get on top of my paperwork some once I get them into a steady work pace. Also, I can have them drive me around the first few weeks while I resolve my truck issue so I can see first hand how they handle their driving to see if I'd trust them driving a company vehicle at some point.

My question is what do you look for? The obvious is good work ethic, good appearance, and clean driving record. I'm personally one that would rather hire someone with a tech savvy personality but not necessarily experienced so that I can train them the way I would want them to work rather them coming in with a notion of knowing how they want to do things. I hold my work to high standards and have always made everything I can neat so that if they service an install, they see my pride when they walk into the service call. Aside from these, what do you recommend looking for? I only do LV and am not a licensed electrician so please keep that in mind. Our work varies from home systems to commercial fire, burg, access, VoIP, and IP surveillance. Obviously I'll be looking for someone who knows their way around TCP/IP and network troubleshooting.
 

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I would run a background check, dmv too. Being that they will be entering homes you want to make sure you can trust them. Not saying someone with a record isnt trustworthy. Another point would be looking for someone that is willing to hunker down when the work load becomes a lot for two and is willing to bust his rearend to make it happen. Not just a guy looking for a 40hr wk paycheck. Its hard finding the right guy, doubt it will be found on the first round. Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I plan to start whoever is it on a week of 1099 and if they pass the first week, bring them on for a 90 day trial period. KY allows for termination without reason up to 90 days.
 

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Too bad about your truck.
Don't think that having an employee will make you life any easier in regards to having more time for paperwork. Chances are you will still put in the long hours.
I do think that your thoughts of him driving you around in his personal vehicle are a bit presumptuous, unless you are paying mileage.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Too bad about your truck.
Don't think that having an employee will make you life any easier in regards to having more time for paperwork. Chances are you will still put in the long hours.
I do think that your thoughts of him driving you around in his personal vehicle are a bit presumptuous, unless you are paying mileage.
I plan to work the same as my former employer when I was a lead tech for a security company. We used our own vehicles for our 90 day trial period, then upgraded to a company truck and we were paid mileage until then.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I would never hire on to a company that wanted me to use my own truck.
And that is your choice but it would also be in their employment contract that they would receive one once their trial period was up. I need to see that they drive well on their own before I put them behind the wheel of a company vehicle since they would be taking their company vehicle home with them. I don't currently have a shop so that is the only option.
 

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Check references!!!
The best employees we have found had at least one long term employer. If they have had a lot of different jobs there is usually a reason
 

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Your looking way too far into it! It's a trial and fire system, yes background check, criminal record check and you can lay the person off and hire another if it's not working out. Don't forget your a company owner and you better get a vehicle if you wanna be a successful business. Don't worry about the small stuff, as a small contractor your going to get the crap employees anyways until you establish a name for yourself. Your name won't mean much if all you do is get driven around in employee's vehicles from job to job!
 

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I have used my own work truck when working for employers, but I was compensated for gas and insurance. Also I didn't drive my boss around, I did pick up my helper because his license was out.

Look for someone that has invested in school; shows they have put money into this career, and most likely take it more seriously then others. Also they have a basic knowledge.

The tools they have will speak volumes. And I don't mean just quantity; what brand they are, the shape they are in, and how organized. A serious person will have the tools to get the job done. I know you said you are looking for a fresh guy, but when I was fresh I still had more then basic hand tools. You can tell him to leave his extra tools (other then hand) at home after the first day, but check out what he has. Even Joe blow has basic hand tools at home.

Work background is another big one. Are they mechanically incline, do they know what a hard days work is, and etc.

Talk to him, if money, breaks, or work hours are brought up by him, probably not the guy you want.

Trust your gut, good luck.
 

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Congrats on getting your first employee, and sorry about your loss of your truck. We have business auto insurance, which rents us a truck till ours is fixed etc. this is just a forum, and I am sure there is more to your situation then posted, but sounds like you might think an employee will help more than it will. If you can not afford a $2000.00 truck and make it work, how you going to make payroll, taxes, work comp? Also new hires do not free up as much time as you think they will. Having to watch them, answer questions, get material, etc....I am not trying to be pompous or a jerk. Really trying to help....

That being said, don't be afraid to fire...we are union and have access to the best (that up for debt though), and we have been through five guys in the last 18 months...background checks, etc are great, but like @kunolop said, until you have a name for yourself you will get bottom feeders....
 

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My first hire was JM I knew and I had worked with saw he had a decent work ethic and some skills for what I needed at the time.We did all the back grounds and other checks.

We agreed that he would drive his personal vehicle for 2 weeks or so and I would pay all expenses.
Two weeks came and I had purchased a used POCO van for $ 1500.00 and off we go.

About a year later he was MIA for a week,van was dropped off middle of the night and he never showed back up.

The biggest hassle for me in this bus-dealing with employees.
Gotta love it.
 

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I need to see that they drive well on their own before I put them behind the wheel of a company vehicle since they would be taking their company vehicle home with them.
So let me see if I have this right:
1. Your truck was wrecked
2. Only vehicle you have (seeing how you want him to drive you around)
3. Your credit is not good enough to get a rental?

In 90 days is your credit all of a sudden going to change so you will be able to buy another company vehicle so the new guy will have company truck?
 

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Buy yourself an old beater truck. We have an old beater truck that cost $1850.00 to buy and has cost $350.00 in repairs in two years. If I interviewed for a job and the guy told me we had to drive my truck because he didn't have one, I would think he was nuts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
BDB said:
So let me see if I have this right: 1. Your truck was wrecked 2. Only vehicle you have (seeing how you want him to drive you around) 3. Your credit is not good enough to get a rental? In 90 days is your credit all of a sudden going to change so you will be able to buy another company vehicle so the new guy will have company truck?
No. My truck is only not drivable due to a busted rim and a quarter panel that was damaged so badly it comes down and touched the tire. I've got a new rim on order but it won't be here for 3 weeks and I've got a quarter panel from the local scrap yard that matches my truck perfectly. I should have the truck drivable in 21-28 days but looking for a guy immediately.
 

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You better understand the taxes laws, there are five things that make
an employee a 1099'n! You didn't make the boat...

"... if the position requires the employee to be directed as to how, when, where and with what to do the job, then get quacking… he is a W2 employee. If however, the job will be done independently, then a 1099 may be the way to go."

It's none of my business and I could care less... about your hiring practices
but if they know the law, it might be upsetting all around.

Things to know about a 1099
 
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