Typical Roles at a Hydroponic Farm Business


A typical hydroponics store is a retail environment, staffing a manager (who can be the owner) and several retail employees to assist customers and process sales. A key distinction between hydroponics stores and other retail businesses is that all of your employees should be knowledgeable enough to educate customers about hydroponics and enable them to make smart purchasing decisions.

General Manager

A general manager runs the daily operations of the business. This role is frequently filled by the owner.

Typical Salary: $45,000

What Does This Role Entail?

  • Hiring/scheduling staff
  • Ordering supplies
  • Serving as the point of contact for the company
  • Marketing the business

What to look for:

  • Prior management experience
  • Knowledge of hydroponics

Retail Associate

A retail associate helps customers purchase equipment, answers questions, and makes recommendations. Knowledge of hydroponics is essential.

Typical Salary: $10/hr

What Does This Role Entail?

  • Greeting and assisting customers
  • Processing sales
  • Answering questions about hydroponics

What to look for:

  • Good customer service skills
  • Retail experience
  • Knowledge of hydroponics

Hydroponic Farm Business Hiring Tips


Hiring employees can seem like a nerve-wracking process, but it doesn't have to be. We break the process down into four basic steps: (1) Planning; (2) Recruiting; (3) Interviewing; and (4) Completing the Hire. Here are some tips for each phase of the process

Plan to Staff Your Business

Few of the customers coming in to your store will be hydroponics experts, so it is important your staff encourages questions and is knowledgeable enough to answer them. More so than other retail environments, a part of your employee’s jobs will be spent educating customers. While it’s probably not possible to only hire hydroponics experts, hiring people who are at least interested in hydroponics, or know the basics, is strongly recommended.

A hydroponics store is primarily a retail environment, so the staffing needs are very similar to any retail store. You’ll want a general manager of sorts (who could be the owner) to run the daily operations of the business, hire staff, and order/manage inventory.

Your retail associates will need to be knowledgeable about hydroponics and easy to approach and ask questions. Any prior retail experience is useful in this role. Hire several retail employees so that you can keep the store open during evenings and weekends, as well as cover unexpected absences and scheduling complications.

Develop a Recruiting Strategy

You can recruit candidates any way you would recruit other retail employees: online job boards or community flyers are a good start. Consider also recruiting at local colleges to get access to young workers with flexible schedules.

While prior hydroponics experience is not a requirement to be hired, it’s important to ultimately staff employees who are knowledgeable about hydroponics. When hiring retail associates who don’t have prior hydroponics experience, look for related experience or interest as an indicator that they will be open to learning more about it on the job. People who enjoy gardening or farming could be good choices to hire.

Interview with Confidence

If you take your time during the planning and recruiting phases of the process, you will likely end up with many qualified candidates.

Nonetheless, it is natural for a new business owner to be a bit anxious the first time hiring employees. Don’t forget that the interview is just a chance to get to know an applicant and to give them an opportunity to learn more about the role and the business. Also, it might help to remember that they are probably even more nervous than you are!

Throughout the interview process, it may help to keep in mind that most hydroponics stores look for employees who are:

 

  • Friendly
  • Customer-focused
  • Interested in hydroponics

 

Here are some sample interview questions that will help you learn more about the character of your interviewees:

  • How do you handle working under stress?
  • What does good customer service mean to you?
  • Describe a time you were at your best helping a customer.

 

 

 

Be Familiar with Hiring Laws

After selecting a job candidate, there are certain steps you will need to follow to complete the hiring process. Check out our Hiring Compliance Checklist for a step-by-step guide to the legal aspects of hiring employees.

One of the most important steps is to classify your new hire as an employee or an independent contractor. Become familiar with IRS guidelines on this matter, as there are serious consequences for misclassifying an employee as an independent contractor.

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For more details, please refer to our guide on the topic, Contractors vs. Employees: What You Need to Know. We also provide templates for the essential hiring forms you will need.

Set Up Payroll


Once you have a growing team of employees, it's time to set up your payroll. Using a payroll service provider saves you time for running your business, and also helps ensure that you comply with important federal requirements such as employee tax withholding.

To help our readers save money and grow their business, we negotiated a 20% discount for you with payroll provider ADP, the most popular small business provider in the country.

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Try ADP and get 20% off payroll services for your business.

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