Franchisee April Williams Tells Her CareerPlug Story

by April Williams on January 2, 2019

The growing season was in full swing for a small, newly-established lawn care company. After one employee walked off the job site, already being short on staff, the business owner quickly realized additional people were needed and needed fast.

After placing a help needed ad in the local newspaper, this business owner quickly realized that the 80+ people that had responded didn’t even meet the minimum requirements listed on the ad. However, desperate times calls for desperate measures, right?

Going against her better judgement, the person she hired turned out to be unreliable, notoriously late and damaged thousands of dollars in equipment. What a costly mistake! She found herself back to square one to start the vicious cycle over again.

That business owner was me back in 2012. I was so frustrated with the results of my hiring process. I found myself surrounded by people with that little voice inside my head telling me “good people are so hard to find.”

Being part of the service industry, I am sure we all have said those same words and have experienced the painful and costly results of choosing the wrong person for a specific job. I truly believed that I was to remain forever in that vicious cycle, continuing to pay for my inexperience and lack of hiring skills.

So, what happened? I’m so glad you asked! I went from saying “Good people are hard to find” to “WOW! Great people are everywhere!” But how did I get there?

Thanks to The Grounds Guys’ Home Office team and Neighborly’s Chief Operating Officer Mary Thompson, we have been provided with a great recruiting, hiring and on-boarding program called (drum roll please) CareerPlug!

CareerPlug makes us look and sound as if we have truly mastered the art of recruiting, hiring and onboarding. Great people are attracted to this Great program linking them to a Great company. Are you beginning to see the big picture? I know. I’m having too much fun! Ok, I’ll keep moving along.

You see, hiring through CareerPlug has so many Great benefits (Oh, come on. It’s fun!).

To even complete an application, the candidate must have basic computer skills. This is very important to us as business owners since our employees now use electronic routes, electronic schedules, electronic work orders and time cards. Well, let’s hope you do since all of these are time savers for us. But you say, April, I just need a team member. Yes, I understand but you also need someone you can teach, train and advance for your company to grow and allow you to work “ON” your business not “IN” your business.

Once they submit the application, you can view their responses based on your pre-selected, position focused, questions. If the applicant has the perfect score, CareerPlug “Fast Tracks” this applicant to you for immediate review. This is available for management, sales and production positions. Each position has unique questions using key words to pull out specific details needed to analyze if this applicant is a good fit.  This allows us to hunt for Great people by spear fishing, making our time and energy count, not throwing out our nets and hoping for the best.

If you choose to move forward with the applicant, you simply click a button for the applicant to receive the personality assessment test that has been pre-set by you for the specific positions. Don’t worry, all the great questions are pre-loaded in there for you to select. But if you are one of those people, you know who you are, you can create your own questions too. The assessment test will grade each applicant on personal qualities such as integrity, reliability, team work and much more. It’s all the things we look for that we, as business owners, live by every day of our life, our Code of Care and Code of Values!

I also greatly appreciate all the pre-loaded scripts that are provided for us to use. Oh yes, these make me look really good! Scripts such as the phone interview script, the script to follow when calling references and the face to face interview script. These are even more great areas: we look like we really know what we are doing. That is the part I love the most, looking like I have all my stuff together and I know what I’m doing. Only my fellow business owners will understand me on that one. And guess what GUYS? That’s only the hiring part!

Once you decide to hire them, they are moved over to the on-boarding section and all that hiring information is stored in their file. Yes, on-boarding through CareerPlug has made this process paperless. I was always really bad at waiting for the day of payroll and then looking for the new hire W4 only to find it was still blank. Problem solved!

An e-mail is sent to them with their own personal login instructions. They log on at home to fill out all required documents, sign and upload in their file. There is no more holding up production because the new guy hasn’t filled out important paperwork or forgot to sign somewhere. Once documents have been uploaded, an e-mail notification is sent to you. All activity is logged in the history section. Isn’t that amazing? The new hire completes all required paperwork that you need at their home, on their time and stored in their electronic file. WOW!

Of course, hiring is a skill that must be learned and sharpened through use. CareerPlug helps us to bypass some of the rookie mistakes that bring the most common painful and costly consequences. But it is still up to us to continue to sharpen our hiring skills with the assistance of CareerPlug. We are still the drivers!

So, what is the point to all of this? If you are struggling with employee issues, Careerplug can be a great investment! With CareerPlug, we can go from “Good people are so hard to find” to Great people waiting for a position to open at a Great company, your company! We can go from a desperate situation, where you must hire anyone who has a heartbeat to hiring quality people that bring the passion you once had back to life. The kind of people that reminds us why we started our own business, the kind of people that build our own desire to be a better person!

Our growth depends on our efforts. To multiply and grow we must attract and retain the ones who are multipliers themselves. Believe it or not, these multipliers are desperately seeking great people and great companies that are driven, motivated and genuinely care like we do. CareerPlug is that link that connects us with those multipliers. If you want to go from “Good people are hard to find” to “Great people are everywhere” take advantage of CareerPlug.

Through CareerPlug, you will build that champion team that will consistently exceed your customer’s expectations, allowing each team member to achieve their personal goals and, in turn, provide you with a growing business where you love the people you work for and work with. CareerPlug helps you own a business that allows you to work “ON” the business and not “IN” the business, enjoying a pipeline that is full of Great people waiting to team up with Great people!

Update to CareerPlug's Pro Plan

Visit today and claim your account by entering your name and e-mail then upgrade to the ProPlan version for $495/year. You can activate the free HR Onboarding module once you go Pro. The Home Office team would love to hear your recruiting experiences or questions, so please send them to

Topics: CareerPlug

April Williams

Franchise Owner of The Grounds Guys Of Cedar Creek Lake



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