Master the Art of Hiring in 8 Steps
Holly DePalma |
You and leaders of your hiring team have worked hard to develop, improve, and refine the talent acquisition process, yet bad hires continue to plague your company and its growth. Sound familiar? You’re not alone. Per recent data, two thirds of U.S. employers reported that bad hires negatively impacted business.
Few missteps hurt an organization more than a poor hiring decision. The collateral damage caused by a bad hire extends far beyond frustration to include lost productivity, low employee morale, and exorbitant recruiting costs. With your company’s bottom line and organizational culture at stake, you simply can’t afford to make a bad hire. It’s time to be proactive. Outlined below are eight steps designed to help your organization adopt a more strategic and effective hiring process. If executed consistently, this approach will yield increased retention, greater output, and financial gains.
Additionally, because this topic resonates with so many of our Members, on November 17th I will be facilitating a free webinar, 7 Mistakes that Lead to a Bad Hire, centered on effective hiring practices, and you are invited and encouraged to attend.
1. Define the specs
When it comes to the hiring process, haste makes waste. Too often, companies rush to post a job, whether it be a matter of urgency or convenience, in hopes of filling the position quickly. However, the hiring process should not be treated as a swift transaction. Instead, it’s critical that you approach it in a holistic manner. First it is necessary to develop a time line, identify specifically what the open role will entail, what the key requirements will be, what type of candidate will be best suited, and decide how the hiring process will be specifically managed and executed.
2. Analyze and Compromise
Many companies falter by haphazardly drafting and posting a job description without carefully analyzing the role. Most times, in-depth analysis requires the involvement of not only management and human resources, but also key individuals with whom the new hire will be working in some capacity. It’s important to solicit the input of workforce members who can speak to the behaviors, personality, and work styles that are best suited to the role. Collaborate to decide and agree on what responsibilities should be highlighted and what core competencies are needed to be successful in the role. Consider using a job analytic tool to provide objectivity.
3. Craft an Effective Job Description
Capitalize on your team’s analysis by producing a targeted job description that is updated and accurately conveys the position’s requirements and critical responsibilities. Incorporate interpersonal and behavioral components by including key interactions that the new hire may have with other departments. Also, present the description in a tone and manner that best represents the culture of your company. Giving the description a ‘personality’ will increase the likelihood of attracting compatible candidates.
4. Follow the Rules of Attraction
At this stage, it’s crucial that your recruiting practices are effective and sound to ensure that you’re attracting the right profile of applicants to the position. Examine the applicants’ behavioral profiles and review your analysis to see if the two align. Be mindful of the source of the applicant as well and consider where they discovered the job. If the candidates are not matching your data from the first stage, you may need to re-evaluate if you are accurately depicting the role and targeting the appropriate population of job seekers.
5. Building a Screening Toolbox
Once the job description goes live, you can expect an influx of candidates. But are you equipped to quickly vet the candidates and determine the relative fit between each one and the requirements of the job? At this stage in the hiring process, it’s imperative that you don’t inadvertently eliminate a viable candidate. Start by administering behavioral assessments to narrow down individuals to whom you want to grant an interview. You can utilize technology to manage the volume of candidates, but it should be used synergistically with the behavioral data as to not risk overlooking a suitable candidate for one who perhaps fits the mold on paper.
6. Conduct Purposeful Interviews
With a pipeline of qualified candidates lined up, the hard part is over. Now you can sit back, relax, and recite a list of prescribed interview questions and compare the quality of responses, right? Wrong. An oft-overlooked step in the hiring process is developing pointed and customized questions. Use assessment data to formulate relevant behavioral based questions designed to display the candidate’s motivational and reactive behavior. A one-size fits all approach to interviewing is ineffective and fails to help the hiring team delineate between candidates’ viability.
7. Make an Offer They Can’t Refuse
You have concluded the interview stage, worked with your hiring team to identify a top candidate, and conducted necessary background checks. Now it’s time to present an offer and seal the deal. But are you equipped to make an offer that is aligned with your candidate’s needs to ensure that he or she accepts? At this stage in the process, it’s imperative that you review the data you’ve captured which expressly demonstrates the candidate’s motivating needs, values, and other factors that he or she will likely consider in addition to salary and benefits. A careful review of the candidate profile will also influence the way you frame the offer presentation and help you anticipate how the candidate might approach the negotiation process.
8. Pave the Way for Success
Entering the final stage of the hiring process, it’s important to remember that you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. In other words, it’s paramount that your new employee enjoys a positive and impactful onboarding experience. This is the first opportunity to spark engagement and productivity, both crucial to fostering retention. How do you create a meaningful onboarding phase? First, apply the behavioral data to this phase to accommodate the employee’s motivating needs and preferred learning style. Next, hone in on your new hire’s strengths and skill set, and assign initial tasks designed to ignite interest and accelerate his or her success from the get-go.
As you can see, an effective hiring process involves much more than merely posting a job description and pouring over an endless pile of resumes in fruitless search of the right candidate. Instead, commit to investing in the entire lifecycle of the hiring process. By implementing strategy, job analytic tools, behavioral profiles, and effective communication with key members of your workforce, you will insulate your company from the negative effects of a bad hire, and instead, acquire talent that is best suited to contribute to your company’s continued success and growth. If you are interested in learning more about how MEA can help your organization advance and improve its hiring practices, contact us today for immediate assistance.