hiring process


To ensure your company’s hiring process is helping recruiting efforts, regularly evaluate and update your process, using a high-tech high-touch approach. Technology can identify qualified candidates quickly, but you also need human interaction. This combination will create a hiring process that attracts top talent needed to achieve company goals, assist recruiters in attracting candidates, aligns job requirements with internal stakeholder needs and ensure candidates have a positive experience.


Throughout my career in recruiting, I have observed the companies waste the most time, energy, and money on five aspects of the hiring process including: job requisitions, hiring parameters, performance objectives, interview process and candidate appraisal.


The Job Requisition which should be the roadmap for the recruiting process. Unfortunately, too often the roadmap is outdated, boring and repetitive. Most requisitions are simply a list of required skills, credentials, experience, and education. Your job requisition should be part of your company’s marketing collateral. It should identify what your company requires as well as provide candidates with a sense of the company culture, opportunities for professional development and growth.


Millennials who now make up the largest percentage of the workforce want to know much more than merely what they will be expected to do each day. They want to know the challenges they will face, the kind of development they will receive and how their work matters. They want to understand how the work they do contributes to the company goals and mission.


Think of your first day in your current job and think of your current responsibilities. When you hire someone, you will always use their additional talents that may not have been part of the credentials requested. As a result, it is necessary to update job requisitions each time someone is replaced, to reflect the new requirements of the position.


Start with your job title knowing that candidates are not attracted to confining or standard job titles. We once worked with a company who wanted to attract female candidates for their two “Salesman” positions. The first think I discussed with their VP of Sales was the job title of “Salesman” which could sabotage their objective to hire women. Once we discussed the performance objectives of the job, the titles was changed to “Business Development Manager” company-wide.


The title of Business Development Manager is not as creative a title as “Master Hand shaker”, but it was far more effective than “Salesman” in attracting the right candidates. If you want to recruit future hires who are creative and outside-the-box-thinkers, why should they have an in-the-box title? Like a compelling brand, a compelling job title is one that promises the fulfillment of an expectation.


Next, lets address your hiring parameters which are those aspects of a role that are aligned with company policy and are essentially non-negotiables. Examples would be working hours, location, systems utilized or company benefits. The two parameters that affect recruiting efforts are location (or if there is an option of working remote) and salary and benefits. To attract top talent, consider innovative rewards which would attract top talent. This could involve offerings like tuition reimbursement, assistance with student loans or daycare reimbursement. Many companies are creating a hybrid working environment which is a combination of in-office and remote.


Third and I think most important is the need to identify performance objectives so the hiring manager, recruiter and prospective hire all understand how this person will be evaluated. Too often, we obtain a long list of requirements and then when we ask how the candidate will be evaluated there is a major disconnect. My suggestion is to begin with one important question “How will this person be evaluated at the end of 6 or 12 months?” and keep the answer in the forefront when updating job requisitions. The performance objections are also the foundation for the candidate’s annual performance review and compensation increase considerations.


Next is the interview process which must be comprehensive to be effective, but in the current candidate-driven job market, it is imperative that prospective hires move through the process quickly and efficiently. Google established the Rule of Four which proved four interviews were enough to predict whether someone should be hired. Establish the objective of each round of interviews and inform the prospective hire. Whenever possible, suggest the second round be a panel interview with no more than four people who will directly or indirectly interact with the candidate if they are hired. The panel interview also helps eliminate bias or emotion from the hiring process.


Finally, we should address the candidate appraisal which must be consistent. Each person is given a candidate appraisal score card and instructed on the grading process. If done properly the candidate appraisal process will not only help you identify and hire the BEST candidates, but it will also provide the candidate’s future supervisor with great insight into the candidate after they are hired.


The scorecard should grade the candidate against the specific performance objectives for each job as well as their technical ability and soft skills required. The scorecard accomplishes two things pre-hire. It rates each candidate during interviews and helps you hire talent that has the best chance of success. The scorecard also accomplishes three things post-hire. It helps rate performance after the hire, identifies gaps in the interviewing or hiring process and helps identify additional actions or training that is needed.


You now understand how your hiring process can either enhance of hinder your recruiting efforts. There is always pressure, to fill open requisitions, but you now realize how important it is to initiate actions needed to update the hiring process. Take time to review the five aspects that waste the most time, energy, and money and start with the area you feel will have the greatest impact on improving your recruiting efforts.



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