It was during a phone call with the COO of a multi-million dollar company that I was consulting with that I could literally hear the pain coming through the phone lines.
“Where in the world do you find these people?”, he said to me in reference to how to find an in-house Infusionsoft consultant to run the back end marketing automation systems of their company.
Over the last few years while primarily rolling up my sleeves and getting back into the trenches in the day to day activities for some top info marketing companies, I have found that the struggle is real.
I remember one client who had hired me to come in to consult with what seemed like a straightforward project.
There were three main areas: Billing Automation, Financial Forecasting, Conversion Tracking.
For the billing automation system, they wanted to have the ability to send out email reminders when a payment failed or a credit card expired – but also wanted to be able to do financial forecasting.
For the financial forecasting, they wanted to be able to actually tell how much money would be collected over the next 12 months.
For the conversion tracking, they wanted to find out what half of their marketing was working.
These were seemingly straightforward requests but they did not have a person in house that could create a system to do any of those three things. They did not have anyone on their staff that had the advanced knowledge and experience with Infusionsoft to know all of the “gotchas”.
So that is where I came in. As an Infusionsoft Certified Partner with years of experience and the ability to envision solutions to problems in my head – they had me come in to help them.
There was one problem though.
As soon as I came in I realized that they were not ready to start at step 1. There was a lot of foundational work that still had to be done – and that foundational work was going to take a lot of time and resources.
I quickly realized that they needed more help and worked with the COO to create a job description so we could start to recruit, hire, and train additional resources.
What we soon found out though, was that this was going to be harder than we thought.
I had the privilege (or responsibility) to be part of the interview process. Their internal team did an initial screening and then passed them to me for the technical screening.
That is where it got rough.
Literally none of the candidates, one after another, would pass even a basic technical test. They all needed a lot of training and what they needed was someone to jump in right away and get started.
So back to the drawing board.
We decided to reverse the process. Instead of wasting the time of the internal team up to 8 different interviews before passing to me for the final technical screening, we decided to start with the technical screening first.
I created a 3 step method to screen the applicants.
Step One: Initial Interview with Scenario Questions
Step Two: Skills Test in Infusionsoft Sandbox App
Step Three: Internal Team Interviews for Cultural Fit
Of course legal and HR did their checks as well and of course never skip the reference check step!
So how can you use this in your company?
Before you can begin screening the applicants, you first have to have applicants to start with!
Contrary to popular belief – the people on your email list are probably not going to be the best candidates for the job – especially if you have an info marketing business with entrepreneurs on your list!
If you are primarily teaching people how to be successful entrepreneurs – the contacts on your email list are probably not going to be the best fit for a full-time employee job. They are on your email list and opening your emails because they want to know how to break out from the 9-5 and launch something on their own!
If you are looking for full-time in house person, the best places to get candidates is on the traditional job board sites, through a recruiter, or by posting the job offer directly on your site.
You can also get a little crafty and start to run some FB ads to employees of other companies that have really good talent. (But shhh don’t tell anyone I said that!) 🙂
Once the applicants start rolling in, be aware of red flags. You want to look for people that have been working as an employee – not someone who has had their own successful business.
Freelancers might be okay if they have previously worked as an employee.
Look for other red flags like anyone that has stayed in the same role without a promotion for more than 3 years. Also look out for anyone that only holds a job for 18-24 months and then has gaps before their next job.
Something that I like to see is someone that stays about 3 years in a role or job and then is promoted or moves on to something new. If you can find that person – that will be gold!
After you have found some qualified candidates you can follow the following three step process to screen and interview them.
Step one is to research and design the right questions for the interview. This is more than just the culture fit but do they have the ability to think strategically. You want to really figure out if they know the software but also if they are willing to say they don’t know something as well. There is nothing wrong with not knowing – there is a lot wrong with pretending you do!
The scenario questions should be based on real life problems that your company had and have recently been solved with Infusionsoft. Something that took you a few hours to figure out the right way to do it.
Always write out the scenario questions and ask them in the exact same way to all the candidates so that you are giving an even playing field to the candidates.
Depending on what they answer, dig deeper. Then dig some more. Why did they choose the solution they did? Would they consider a different way? Have they built something like that before? What are some of the “gotchas” that should be considered?
If they pass the initial interview tell them that you will be sending them a follow-up email with a skill test with a login to a sandbox app of Infusionsoft. Be sure to ask them if they will have time to finish the test and get a verbal commitment as to when it will be done. This also helps you see their own time management!
Step two is to send the skills test. The skills test can be three scenarios that they need to build in a sandbox app of Infusionsoft. Be sure to give the exact same instructions to all the candidates even if you discover in the process that your instructions were wrong somehow. If you really want to test them, leave a piece of critical information out and see how they adapt for that scenario!
Give them a few days to build the scenarios and tell them to email you when done. After that, check their work! It is best if you have 3 or more candidates doing the building test so you can see if it is a candidate issue or a test issue if they are not building the campaigns correctly.
Finally, it is time to check if a cultural fit. I can’t stress enough how important it is to find out if you are going to like working with this person! Especially in a small company – you are not hiring them to do a job – but to become part of your small family. Make sure your team LIKES the person and is excited about them joining the team as well.
After legal and HR sign-off and the references are checked – you will be much more likely to have recruited a winner!
Onboarding / Training
To make sure that all your hard work was not in vain, make sure you have a very smooth onboarding process. Meet with your new hire the first day and welcome them to the team. If you have an all company meeting, prepare an intro and introduce your new team member with sincere and lavish praise. Show how excited YOU are that they are there joining the team.
Have at least 2 weeks of written down activities of exactly what they need to be trained on. You can have other employees help you with this! Some examples might be:
Digital Set-Up with Email, Slack, Trello, LastPass
Legal Forms signed and filled out
Who is who in the company and who they can go to for help
Scheduled 1:1s with all stakeholders ie the copywriter, the developer, the graphic designer, etc. Even if it is a quick 15 min call – make sure your new recruit meets as many people as possible during the first week! Most of their success will depend on the relationships that they build with others. And finally technical training. If you have documentation about how to do things, make sure they have access and have the time to read up on all of the processes.
And there you have it. How to recruit, hire, and train a full-time Infusionsoft consultant for your business!
Was this helpful? Let me know! I would love to hear how you used these tips to recruit, hire, and train your next team member!