Payments Leader

SMB Recruiting and Onboarding…for Profit! – by David Johnson

March 22, 2018

David Johnson, Senior Vice President, Emerging Commerce Products

Hiring the right people may be the single most important thing a small business owner can do. Good employees can make a business successful. But many small businesses have neither the size nor the resources to afford human resource (HR) departments, recruiters and sophisticated software that tracks employees and expenses. Even the process of finding new employees can be taxing for small and midsized business (SMB) owners – particularly if they rely on temporary staff or otherwise experience high natural turnover.

Fortunately, modern employee management tools may be just what your business requires.

Recreating Recruiting for SMBs

Over the last few years, there has been a growth in the availability and affordability of recruitment solutions for smaller businesses. These recruiting management solutions typically offer an online portal that automates the hiring process – from finding and screening potential employees to interviewing, hiring and onboarding them.

If that wasn’t good enough, these solutions are becoming revenue-generators as they automatically identify candidates that would qualify for available tax credits, something many SMB owners are unaware of or lack the resources to track because of how labor-intensive the application process is.

The software also allows companies to post an open position on multiple job boards and social media sites with just a single click. Applicants then apply through these sites, which are customized to draw the information necessary to quickly identify candidates based on custom filters, such as experience and eligibility for tax credits. The applicants can be prescreened before interviews are scheduled without any need for human intervention – until the face-to-face or phone interview.

Once candidates have been selected, modern recruitment management solutions automate much of the laborious onboarding process – running background checks, verifying work authorization and confirming employment eligibility. The employees simply input their basic information and complete all federal and state required documents (Form I-9, W-4, etc.) securely through mobile or desktop applications. Employees can be automatically added to payroll processes – demand deposit accounts (DDA)/Automated Clearing House payments (ACH) or prepaid payroll card solutions, for instance – so that the employee gets reimbursed quickly without the use and expense of checks.

Even applications for tax credits can be automated. Since all data is securely and centrally stored online in the recruitment portal, businesses can easily stay compliant with local and national HR laws.

SMB Portal to Success

Existing HR solutions are often simply not applicable to smaller businesses. The good news is that modern recruitment management solutions are increasingly gearing up for SMBs. Run on hosted, cloud environments, and accessible through the internet and mobile portals, these solutions will help employers hire employees in less time, for less cost.

But most interestingly, a modern SMB-targeted recruitment management tool can operate as a real profit center as they can now easily identify, highlight and apply for tax credits, bringing money directly back into a business.

Improving the bottom-line and increasing business efficiency has never been more affordable.

Hire Employees. Get Paid?

Hiring staff is a relatively difficult and time-consuming task with many labor-intensive, paper-based steps, including finding candidates, pre-screening, interviewing, onboarding, etc.

Lack of automation in the process can lengthen the time it takes to find employees as well as the cost to get them in the door. Typically, these smaller businesses are also unaware or do not have the resources, to identify and apply for tax credits via the U.S. Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program or the newest empowerment zone credit. These programs are designed to encourage employers to hire applicants that are considered disadvantaged and perhaps live and work in an empowerment zone as defined by the Federal Government. Employers receive cash incentives through each unique program – up to $12,000 in individual tax credits per qualified employee. That’s right, you not only hire the right person to help your business but even get a significant financial benefit from the government! To take advantage of this program, an employer must first be able to identify those individuals from the pool of potential applicants and then go through an exhaustive paper-based process to apply for the tax credit itself. The result is that many businesses are losing out financially either through a lack of knowledge or simply not having the time to follow-through on the process.


David Johnson

Senior Vice President, Emerging Commerce Products

DJ is the Product Division Lead over Loyalty, Prepaid, EBT – Government and Merchant Products. DJ joined FIS in 2007 and has over 20 years of payment industry experience with roles in product development, strategy, consulting and business development. Before FIS, DJ managed Online Banking and Bill Pay for a Top 15 US bank. DJ earned his MBA from Emory University and a degree in Finance from the University of Florida.