Trial periods working well

MYOB report:

The 90-day work trial appears to be creating more employment opportunities in the SME sector, according to the latest nationwide MYOB Business Monitor survey of business owners and operators from around the country.

Almost two thirds (63%) of small businesses (6-19 employees) and 16 per cent of micro businesses (1-5 employees) have employed a new staff member on a 90-day trial in the last year. Meanwhile, just 13 per cent of small businesses and 5 per cent of micro businesses have dismissed a staff member within their trial period over the 12 months to August 2015.

So four out of five employed on a 90 day trial get kept on, but around one in five are not.

I’m not surprised so many SMEs are using the trial period. It is simply impossible to determine in advance how well some employees will do. CVs and job interviews can only cover so much. And if you are a small business and end up with an employee who simply is unable to do the job, or causes turbulence in the office, then previously the cost would be great- it could even put you under.

Another story shows employers are reasonable about the length of time:

“The 90-day trial periods have been very successful – not just for employers, but also employees,” Food and Grocery Council chief executive Katherine Rich said. “I think 120 days is unreasonable, mainly because I would ask the question ‘if you don’t know after 90 days, what more information are you getting after 120?”

SME Business Network founder Tenby Powell shared Rich’s sentiments over the programme’s success, as did Wellington Chamber of Commerce chief executive John Milford, saying management and staff should be engaged throughout the entire trial period, and that the outcome “should never come as a surprise.”

I agree there is no need for more than 90 days. That is enough time to establish if someone is up to the job.

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