The most important asset in any organization is its people. Exceptional employees are the reason that companies thrive. But how do you ensure that each new team member you hire is the right one for your business? By having a strong hiring process in place, you can significantly increase the effectiveness of your recruitment efforts and the “quality of hire”.
As recruiters, we rely on well-thought-out hiring processes to ensure that we secure top talent in an efficient manner for our clients. Whether you work with a recruitment agency or conduct your own candidate searches, a strong hiring process will most certainly yield the best results.
What is the hiring process?
Typically, the hiring or recruitment process entails the following steps or phases:
- Identifying the need and viability for hiring a new employee;
- Creating the job description including deciding on the role and responsibilities as well as the skills and experience required;
- Recruiting for the position, targeting active and passive candidates;
- Screening, interviewing, and selecting a candidate;
- Onboarding and training the new employee.
Here’s how a strong recruitment process can benefit your business:
The hiring process is often not given much thought until it’s actually needed. Investing the time and effort to have formalized practices at the ready will pay off because:
- recruiting and training new employees can be costly and time-consuming so you want to make sure you hire right the first time. According to Recruiterbox, a bad hire can cost a business 30 percent of its first-year potential earnings.
- an established hiring process will allow you to recruit more efficiently, which increases your chances of acquiring cream-of-the-crop candidates, who are typically off the job market within 10 days, according to Officevibe.
- a solid recruitment process allows you to thoroughly vet applicants, ensuring that the one you hire is the most qualified for the job and can hit the ground running without needing additional training.
- a high-quality hire not only gets the job done but contributes to greater productivity, more satisfied customers, higher morale, and a more positive work environment.
Tips to Make Your Hiring or Recruitment Process Better
Overall, a more effective recruitment process begins from a strategic vantage point, where you have considered how every new hire will fit into the bigger picture of your business. For example, is the new position filling a short-term gap or does it address any long-term needs that may come up? Have you planned for future growth and advancement of the new employee within the organization? While this kind of strategic planning requires a greater investment of your time upfront, it will save you valuable resources in the end.
Here are some tips to help you optimize each phase of the hiring process:
Identifying the need to hire a new employee
- Conduct a cost-benefit analysis to ensure that it makes financial sense to hire a full-time employee. If it doesn’t, you may consider creating a part-time position or using a freelancer instead.
- If it does make sense to hire, establish a hiring committee comprised of key people from HR and other relevant departments to help you plan and carry out the hiring strategy. This collaborative approach to hiring has many benefits including diverse perspectives on the skills and character traits required for the position, more thorough evaluation of the applicants, and increased engagement amongst your team. Candidates also prefer interviews by committee; according to Officevibe, 66 percent believe that interacting with employees is the most effective way to get to know a company.
Creating the job description
- If you have thought about how the new hire fits into the long-term strategy of the company as mentioned above, be sure to focus on that in the job description or posting. The best candidates will be drawn to opportunities that show promise of future growth and development.
- In addition to including what you are looking for in a successful candidate, be sure to feature what your company has to offer potential employees. A research study reported in the Wall Street Journal found that job postings that were focused on what the company could do for applicants rated higher than ads that only talked about what was expected of the candidate. Be sure to highlight company benefits like flexible schedules, medical and dental plans, professional development, a team-oriented culture, or any other perks that will make your posting more attractive to applicants.
Recruiting for the position
- When promoting the position, look beyond online job posting sites. Ask current employees for referrals, share the posting through your company’s social media accounts like LinkedIn and Twitter, get out to job fairs, and advertise in industry publications. Recruitment agencies are an excellent avenue for reaching quality, pre-screened candidates.
- Maintain a strong employer brand even when you are not actively recruiting. A survey conducted by Glassdoor.com found that 69 percent of respondents were more likely to apply for a job at a company with an established employer brand. Respond to any reviews about your company on job sites and keep your company profiles active with updates on company news, employees, and culture. This will keep you top-of-mind with both active and passive candidates.
Screening, Interviewing, and Selecting a Candidate
- Conducting telephone interviews is an effective way to screen applicants and save time during the hiring process. Keep the interviews simple with the objective of determining if the applicant understands the job, meets the requirements, what they expect in terms of salary, and when they would be available to start.
- When interviewing and selecting a candidate, remember to consider how well that person suits the company and its culture, not just how qualified they are for the job itself. An employee who can complete the work but does not get along well with others, is unable to accept feedback, or does not believe in company’s values is more of a detriment than an asset. A study conducted by Leadership IQ found that 46 percent of new hires failed within 18 months and the vast majority of those cases (89 percent) were due to poor interpersonal skills. Many of the hiring managers (82 percent) admitted that they noticed character flaws during the interview but they were too pressed for time, focused on other issues, or lacked confidence in their interviewing skills to raise any red flags. Hiring committees are an effective way to avoid these alarmingly common pitfalls.
Onboarding and Training
- The hiring process doesn’t end when a candidate accepts the offer so it’s important to give your onboarding and training efforts the attention they deserve. According to Glassdoor, a strong onboarding process improves new hire retention by 82 percent and productivity by over 70 percent.
- Some onboarding best practices include creating an agenda for the new employee’s first week, sharing helpful and important information such as an employee handbook as soon as they arrive, dedicating time for an orientation and meeting with his or her manager, encouraging job shadowing, and soliciting feedback from the new employee within their first few months on the job.
Keep working on your hiring process
Make your hiring process even stronger by continuing to evaluate it and adjust if necessary. Ask new employees for their feedback on what worked and what could be improved. Engage the expertise of a recruiter to help you fine-tune or fill in gaps.
If finding the time to create or revamp your hiring process is proving difficult, it may be beneficial to work with a recruitment agency to ensure you have access to the best candidates. Contact Marberg and one of our dedicated HR consultants can help you find your next great employee.