5 Steps to recovery after COVID
March 4, 2021

Ontario's manufacturing businesses were not ready for the pandemic despite the world giving us a sneak peek for months preceding it. 2020 will be the year that we endured a global crisis, which unleashed an economic devastation, with closures and a recession looming. The scars of the pandemic are visible in business closures everywhere.


It is challenging to imagine how our manufacturing industries can transition back to a pivoting, thriving, and prosperous Ontario.


The truth is that a recession is an opportunity. But it takes effort and care to reshape manufacturing following this unprecedented year, with fear of a looming recession still far from over. Now it is the time to take action with tread carefully on spending but slowly and steadily return to the operations to support Ontario's economy. The most significant expenditure for most manufacturing businesses is the people, so you need them to work smart, automate, and delegate as much as possible.


The resilience needed by all Canadians to help our economy recover and pivot is more critical than ever. Manufacturing may be the pandemic rescue.


One thing is for sure: Every business is making choices now that will have a lasting impact on all of Canada; employment, strategic planning and goal setting for survival as thing find their footing in the new normal after this year. Businesses that have manufacturing taking place in other countries have been paralyzed by the global and international restrictions and will be treading carefully to build a contained Canadian operation.


So how can our manufacturing businesses reshape their work processes to recover from this?

  1. Be a provider of relief programs to support workplace wellbeing.

Employee wellbeing has been rattled and life is still very unsettled. Making this a vital priority will not only retain your employees but will help your business succeed. Communicate what services are provided through your Employee program to support mental health and all other aspects of health and wellbeing.

  1. Set up new economic strategies -

Work has always been and is more evident than ever, a critical component in peoples lives. Restoring businesses with optimistic but realistic strategies will help others feel a part of the restoration plan. That offers employees a purpose and is a game-changer in terms of outlook and performance.

  1. Invest in programs to safely get people back to work - Providing signage to mark social distancing clearly and directional visuals help avoid confusion. Situate chairs and provide clear divider barriers to reinforce social distancing requirements. Offering the PPE needed are intentional measures to keep people safe while at work will go a long way to corporate social responsibility.

  2. Recognize the critical role of culture - In manufacturing, this is often undervalued to support interactions leaders, management, employees and all stakeholders have. COVID 19 has been a culture-changing event and with job-security being at the top of everyone's mind, has become a sensitive topic. Employee recognition, open communication and offering performance feedback in a kind and constructive manner are vital to rebuilding culture.

  3. Run Lean for a while - It is more important to get and keep great people then go through future cutbacks and risk again. Sharing partnerships to help you with the hiring process can help streamline processes on your behalf and ultimately save you from re-inventing the wheel.


First Hire can save you time and resources and allow you to work on the reshaping and recovery of your business. With contract options and all the policies, procedures and safety training available, you can focus on your product and protocols to help get the job done. Curious how to boost your recovery process? Let's chat.

Hire them and Keep them 
October 10, 2020

Hire them and Keep them


So you have seen the applications, done the hiring process, found your talent.

Whew! Now you can move on and focus on your business!


Sadly, not exactly.


While getting the employees is one thing, another massive issue in this industry is an employer nightmare.


Keeping them.


The process of finding talent to get the job done is time-consuming and at times, frustrating and daunting. To go to all that trouble, you want to know there is a strategy in place to keep them.


Even beyond the hiring process, there are processes and training needed to get an employee comfortable and equipped to work independently and perform effectively. New employees need to learn your business, learn your policies and procedures, follow through on required training and safety measures, meet colleagues, and settle into their new role with ongoing support.


That feels like a big waste of time when they don’t stick around. There are many reasons that employees don’t stay; they range from the pay, logistics and convenience, relationship problems with managers or peers, and corporate culture. But the most common reason employees leave their jobs is because they didn’t learn new skills and were not challenged.


It turns out that we crave employment that requires us to learn and grow. It fuels our motivation. It is an inherent need.


Here are our top 5 tips for investing in your employees need for growth and learning, inevitably optimizing your ability to retain them for the long haul.


  1. Begin the investment in the interview process

During the interview, probe with open-ended questions that ignite the potential passion in your potential employee. Ask about a time they learned a valuable lesson in a workplace environment, when they had to teach someone else or what their learning preferences are. Find out what their long term career goals are, and if they don’t have those mapped out, commit to supporting them to do so.


  1. Provide mentoring opportunities

Investing in the learning and growth opportunities goes far beyond watching training videos. Partner up or delegate a one-on-one person to be the go-to person to create a sense of belonging and seek out the development opportunities for new employees. Good employees need to be identified and then nurtured in mentoring ways to retain them.


  1. Advocate for them

There is nothing more rewarding than having someone advocate on your behalf. Believing in your employee’s development and then seeking opportunities to develop, gain skills, and be part of a collaborative initiative will help a new employee feel valued and part of the organization’s mission.


       4. Challenge them

Employees who feel underutilized and not being challenged will digress into behaviours that manifest as boredom and unmotivated. Purpose is part of life, and ideally part of every person’s livelihood at work in terms of feeling committed to their company long-term. Ensure that you are continually providing opportunities to grow their skills, grow personally and learn new things that they are actually interested in.


       5. Value their Voice

Checking in with your employees regularly is vital to retention. Creating an environment that values opinions and suggestions is always a great way to help new employees feel listened to and heard. Get to know your employee’s experience, encourage them to share, and find out what knowledge they could bring to your workplace. Include and invite them to be part of business decisions, operations and to enhance their workplace culture.



The challenge of retention won’t be going away. Still, forward-thinking companies who are people-focused more than business-focused will save time and money by investing in intentional retention efforts.


And you will likely see the domino effect of a more positive work environment in the process!


Curious about how to get started with radical retention processes? Let’s connect!

is virtual the new face-to-face?
August 18 2020

One thing that we have learned from the pandemic of 2020 is the need for people to feel connected. With months of isolation, a shutdown of community and loss of jobs, we have learned what is truly essential in life.


Now, as we begin returning to work and for the unforeseeable future, attempting to rebuild our economy, Establishing meaningful connections and relationships has prevailed but with new challenges.


Welcome to the business world of Virtual Sales teams!


Due to one of the most significant and historic pandemics in history, business and professional sales teams, customized to being face to face, entirely ceased. The need to get back to work and the awareness that all business owners will need to get creative with ways to keep themselves and others safe at the same time does require intentional processes to support the human need for connection.


Sales teams typically used to travel, networking events and face to face meetings have flipped into a world of Virtual. Being virtual and working remotely from home presents new challenges for sales teams, usually characterized as extraverted, outgoing, driven, highly motivated by social events and networking opportunities. Remote work and virtual sales teams may help everyone stay safe and healthy, but are they an effective way to help you execute a professional presence to meet your sales quota?


Encouraging your sales team forward to virtual will be great for them and great for your business. Your organization may be able to leverage a cost-effective way to save the company money in the long hall. It is easier to make financial targets with a virtual workforce design.


Offering the opportunity to cut the expenses report significantly (limiting travel costs, expense cards, wining and dining clients, etc.) and spread sales territories geographically more expansively, enables teams to reach new targets. This new virtual workforce design increase productivity. Salesforce productivity can also increase from a work remotely or work from home arrangement.

Safety in the Workplace COVID style 

July 9th 2020

Who knew that PPE (personal protective equipment) would be one of the most sought after items in 2020? Most people had never heard of or used this acronym in a conversation before. But we are used to this. Trained and equipped to keep ourselves safe with safety equipment and when necessary, PPE,  throughout our careers is a well-known part of our lingo. 


Due to the pandemic of COVID19, policies and procedures have taken the protocols of safety in the workplace to unmatched levels of expectancy and consistency. 


Throughout my leadership coaching and mentorship, the underlying core value that guides my practice and my development working with employers and employees has been the integrity and relationships that you bring to your practice. 


So while we recognize the importance of staying safe, managing infectious disease and minimizing the transmission of germs, the idea of PPE being a mandated necessity for our entire workday does present some challenges and may be a tough pill to swallow.



I don’t think the world knew or realized how much the majority of us do rely on some level of lip-reading when we are listening to relevant information. PPE does cause voices to sound more muffled and especially when I am describing the information that is new knowledge to them, so they may not understand. The best way to address this is in the development of written information that can be handed to them before their task and signed off on that they have read it. 



If an employee asks you to remove your PPE to explain something, it is much easier to refer them to a policy they have signed off on that states you will not be removing your PPE for any reason during their interview, orientation or on the job, and that they may not either. The regulations are in place for everyone’s safety. The amount of sharing experiences and reporting to public health about individual situations is crazy, so to avoid that discomfort and risk to you and your business, follow the rules. 



Your client relationship is so meaningful to your work! If it is difficult to talk with each other wearing PPE, it will be equally challenging to enjoy the typical comradery that comes from a trusted employee-employer relationship. Foregoing touch, smiling, and conversation positively impacts relationship building. Get creative with your employees! Make an employee sign or greet, be more intentional with blogs, social media and email as platforms to connect, NOT to sell or market your services.


PPE is here to stay so overcoming the challenges with creative solutions will help you and your employees adjust to our new normal. If you need further information or tips on how to do this effectively and safely, reach out.

First Hire gives back 
May 20th, 2020

First Hire’s recruitment mandate is to support companies in their hiring process by matching great candidates with great companies.  We support companies and candidates in a wide range of industries, all of which have been seriously affected by this pandemic. These industries include Oil & Gas, Nuclear, Power Generation, Automotive, Aerospace, manufacturing and Logistics. 


We are struggling along with you. We are in it together. 


In times where work and the economy have taken a monumental dive due to COVID19, we seek out focused ways to deliver to our Communities the support they need.


The most authentic example of this during these unprecedented times is through the donation of N95 medical masks. 


In our role as recruitment coordinators for businesses and job seekers, we have offered N95 protection masks as needed in our own business. We are staying true to our goal to be continually responsive in supporting business. First Hire had a resourceful supply of masks intended for our partners, so when the pandemic hit, we chose to donate them. These much-needed masks we have for our partners and gave them as we hear of needs to others, including to a nurse to share at Cambridge Hospital. 


In a world where stock and supply are feared to be in demand for such things, it could be argued that we could have kept these masks for our own uses once business returns to the new normal. First Hire Inc. wants our employers back in business and cannot wait to help candidates see opportunities for jobs. 


It all starts with us doing our part. For us, that includes keeping our healthcare workers fighting this battle safely. 


Delivering help and compassion is the foundation of our business vision. And that is essential too. 


Knowing business will never ultimately return to normal calls for ongoing vigilance to equip and support every industry. Going forward, we will launch and implement the policies and protection for every employee going forward. 


Our business Delivers talent so you can focus on your business. 


Our business also delivers help, so front line workers can continue to keep us safe.


And that is essential. 


Partner up with a business that accomplishes both. 

If you have questions about how to work with us, reach out!


289 309 4200 



Tel: 289 309 4200

Fax: 289 768 2200

Email: info@firsthire.ca

761 Brant St, Suite 105

Burlington, Ontario, L7R 2H7

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