Hiring: Get it right the first time... and the implications if you don't

‘Hiring is similar to travelling, we must have a destination, a plan and a course to follow in finding and selecting quality candidates.’

Time to read: 5 mins

So why, in many cases do we fail to get it right?

What might seem like an arduous process on the front end will likely save you time and money later. Hiring the wrong person is the costliest mistake you can make.


Before you start the process, ask yourself the following questions:


Have I gone through enough planning at the onset of the recruit and identified what skills, experience and person 'fit' is really needed for the role?

On average, most jobs are just replacing the current incumbent who is leaving. A job analysis is always a good start as it will allow an employer to gather and analyse information about the content and human requirements of the job as well as the context in which the job is performed.


Do my ads attract the right candidates for my company?

Most employers do not like writing ads. They often end up very task focused, too wordy and full of generic words such as ‘good communication skills’. In a nutshell they can be quite boring to read. Think about putting yourself in your readers shoes as if you are talking to them. One of the reasons that ads can attract large numbers of unsuitable candidates is that most people do not read the full ad. They look at job title, company information and details such as salary. Maybe if we wrote jobs in a human way then the truth might come out about attracting the right candidates.


What type of screening processes do I need to do put in place for hiring the right people?

This is a crucial part of the recruitment process. Whilst good interviewing is important it can be very subjective and biased depending on who is interviewing. The more pieces of the pie you put together to assess a candidate the greater chance of success. This can come in the form of adding relevant questions to the online application form, pre -screening interviews to assist in the final shortlist, robust reference checks, skills testing, occupational assessments and a good candidate rating grid at the end of the process.


Have I got a position description for this job and does this include how the job fits into the organisation?

Most people assume that job descriptions are written primarily for employees but don’t underestimate the importance for employers. They support you in hiring the best candidates, help ensure your expectations are established and met, support greater employee accountability and can mitigate risk and limit liability. They also give a clear understanding to candidates of what their duties and responsibilities will be.


Am I asking interview questions that are relevant to hiring the right person?

In some ways a typical job interview is a little more than a social call with some predictable choreography. Take the time to plan the questions you are going to ask and strike a balance between assessing the candidates’ skills and experience and getting to know their personality and how they think. Throw in some situational questions of how they dealt with a particular issue at work so you can assess how they handled various work situations.


Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Overall, the pre- planning will prepare you with an objective and measurable mindset to rate candidates against the key criteria you are seeking. If all else fails get you could take advice or utilise the services of a company who recruits for a living.

After checking the points above, what other things can you check to ensure this candidate is right for your organisation and this role? How can you evaluate whether they will stay with your organisation and be a happy and productive team member who truly contributes to your organisation?

Evaluating how candidate will fit with your organisation culture and the team is critical to the success of any recruitment process. Every team member adds a different dynamic to a team so it’s important to find out what motivates them and drives them to try their best and deliver what you need them to.

There are two key things you can focus on in the recruitment process to better evaluate whether a candidate will fit with your organisation culture.

  1. Help your candidates understand what your organisation values and vision are. A lot of organisations discuss this during their induction programmes however by including it in the recruitment process, it allows your candidates to decide how your vision and values fit with their own. Natalie Baumgartner (Chief Workforce Scientist at Achievers, an employee-engagement platform) talks about how ‘candidates are now seeking workplaces where they can intertwine their own beliefs with those of the company and work together on a common vision and purpose and success’.
  2. Spend time talking with your candidates about what aspects of their professions or role they truly value and enjoy the most and evaluate how that fits the role you are recruiting. Natalie also discusses how ‘Employees should be encouraged to focus on the work they are most passionate about and where they feel they can provide the most value’. Spending a few minutes in your interview exploring the detail of what motivates and energises your candidates will help you decide if your role will be engaging and interesting for them.


Confucius believed that if you “Choose a job you love, you will never work a day in your life.” So, spending time in the recruitment process exploring these details with your candidates and helping them understand these things will help them find a job they love and be engaged, happy and productive team members.

DISCLAIMER No liability is assumed by Baker Tilly Staples Rodway for any losses suffered by any person relying directly or indirectly upon any article within this website. It is recommended that you consult your advisor before acting on this information.

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