Hiring the best talent is one of the most difficult and costly areas for any business. It’s not just about offering the highest salary, the process has to be perfect in order to increase the chances of success.
A lot of time and effort is often spent trying to hire candidates, so it is in everyone’s best interest to get it right the first time, as often as possible.
1. Understand the job you are hiring for
One key mistake businesses can often make is not giving the person who is hiring for the job a proper understanding of the job they’re hiring for. An all too common mistake is firing a quick email over to HR and asking them to hire another recruit for the marketing or sales team, and perhaps providing a job description from a similar previous role.
This approach will inevitably lead to a generic job description going out with multiple candidates applying who aren’t actually suited to the role. It can also make the job advert generic and less engaging.
Understanding the role in full will also give the hiring manager an opportunity to field any questions from potential candidates. There’s nothing worse than getting a reply saying ‘I don’t know, I’ll check with the team’. It doesn’t scream professionalism.
2. Get the job description right
One of the key drains on a busy day is high staff turnover. It leads to lost time, effort and money, as well as vacant positions across the business, which ultimately leads to lost revenue.
One of the main reasons for high staff turnover is inaccurate job descriptions, resulting in candidates starting a role and quickly finding that the role isn’t what they thought it would be, and leaving within a matter of months or even weeks.
A job description should not be generic, and definitely should not be rushed, as it will cost much more time and money in the long run.
3. Pre-screen potential candidates
Another drain on time and resources when looking at hiring candidates interviews. A typical interview will last anywhere from 1 to 3 hours, depending on the role. There’s also the time spent arranging and preparing for the interview.
A solution to this is to pre-screen candidates over the phone to get a sense of whether they will be a good fit for the role and indeed the business.
If it transpires that the candidate is seeking a salary higher than what is available, or whether they’re actual experience does not live up to that listed in their CV, then time and money can be saved by taking them off the interview list.
4. Avoid a standardized interview process
It can be tempting to use a standardized interview process in order to keep things simple and save time having to plan further. However, it can be beneficial to develop separate interview processes for different roles, allowing for the interviewer to test the candidate in different areas.
For example, for someone applying for a sales role, the interviewer will likely need to understand much more about their personality and communication skills compared with someone who is interviewing for an admin role with little or zero interaction with customers.
5. Be the company you would want to work for
One key thing many businesses forget when interviewing is that the candidate is also interviewing the business to see whether it is somewhere they would want to work. This is particularly true for more senior or specialist roles where the pool of talent is smaller.
Before conducting the interview, try to put yourself in the candidates shoes as they walk into the building, sit in the waiting area, and as they go through the interview process.
A candidate who is kept waiting too long over the interview start time might think the business is unorganised. Similarly, a candidate who walks into a dull quiet office may not think the working environment is particularly engaging.
6. Don’t be afraid to request a second interview or followup
It can be tempting to try to be as efficient as possible with time spent on interviews, and if something was missed in the initial interview or if you’re not 100% sure of the candidate, just take a chance and hope for the best in order to get it done. However this approach can result in issues later down the line, and it is recommended to at least follow up.
If a candidate truly wants to work for you, they will be happy to do a second interview to finalise the last few points. It can even be done over the phone for the convenience of both parties.
7. Have a solid onboarding process
Once you have made the hire, having a solid onboarding process is crucial, not only for the new employee but also for the business. This can be managed via specialist tools, such as CIPHR HR solutions.
Some businesses like to throw new hires in at the deep end, thinking it will be good for them to get straight into things. This is likely to be problematic without sufficient training and understanding of how things work in the company.
In addition, it doesn’t look good from the new hire’s perspective. If a company isn’t willing to spend the required time to onboard a new member of the team, they might start to think about what sort of company is it they’re working for, and what else might they be cutting back on.
8. Don’t forget to check-in
There’s nothing more frustrating than spending time, effort and money on hiring a new employee only for them to leave within a matter of months.
As a hiring manager, it is highly recommended to have some form of communication with the new hire over the initial period of their employment, to check that they are settling in and that everything has been in line with their expectations.