Your company has a job to be filled and you really want to find that professional whose skills and personality complement the business. Many companies, however, forget that the hiring process goes both ways: the candidate evaluates the organization as much as the company evaluates him or her. That evaluation begins long before the interview. Will your selection process alienate that practically perfect prospect?
Prospects for hire spend considerable time and energy researching companies for which they’d like to work. They go online to review company reputations and come to interviews armed with more information than ever. In his article “11 Recruiting Practices that Alienate Potential Talent and Damage Your Brand,” Organizational change and HR transformation consultant Dr. Bruce Pereira emphasizes that the old “take or leave it” attitude simply won’t fly anymore. Just because open positions get filled doesn’t mean the company’s hiring practices found the best people to fill them.
Actions and attitudes that practically guarantee a candidate’s voluntary withdrawal from the process include disrespect, rudeness, ignorance (on the part of the person conducting the interview), excessive (and pointless) testing, panel interviews, and wasted time (the candidate’s). If your interview process focuses on checking off list items or otherwise treats the candidate who has invested time and perhaps invested in travel as lacking in value, then you’ve lost someone who could have been a great employee.
Other turn-offs, says Mary Lorenz in her article “How to Lose Candidates and Alienate Prospective Employees,” run the gamut of a poor online reputation, job descriptions littered with grammatical and typographical errors, an arduous and seemingly pointless application process, lack of a social media presence, and “bizarre interview questions” that have nothing to do with the job. Outsourced recruitment, typically driven by finances, also jeopardizes the hiring process. Significant risks of outsourcing include loss of ownership, lost branding, and reduced morale of the company’s employees. Keep an eye on online reviews. In her article “9 Ways to Improve Your Hiring Process,” Marci Martin reported, “69 percent of job seekers said they would not take a job with a company that had a bad reputation, even if they were currently unemployed.”
If your company seems to have difficulty finding good talent to fill those open positions, then perhaps it’s past time to establish a process that will position the organization for success in finding great people. That process begins with the job description. Be specific about what the position entails and what the company is offering. A poorly written job description can deter qualified candidates.
Social media is here to stay. Even if you’re not the guru of Facebook and LinkedIn and whatever other social media platforms are in vogue, that doesn’t mean you can’t use them to good effect. By making your application process user-friendly with mobile devices, you’re increasing the available talent pool.
Ditch the checklist. Skills are important; however, potential can yield tremendous dividends in employee loyalty and performance. You need someone with the right personality and attitude more than someone with the perfect skill set. Using social media profiles to screen candidates can provide useful insight; it can also appear intrusive and may open the company up to litigation.
Improve interviews by training hiring personnel and asking the right sort of questions. Remember, just because a candidate was terminated from his or her last position does not necessarily mean that he or she would not be a good fit for your company. Dig a little deeper for real insight. Asking a candidate what kind of tree he’d like to be bears no pertinence to the job.
Be honest about the job. Anyone who is ready to commit a third of his or her life to the organization has the right to know the kind of environment in which he or she may be working. Candidates will appreciate a realistic view of the working conditions.
Assess your hiring process to ensure that you’re drawing the right candidates. Admit when something isn’t working well, or at all, and change what’s wrong.
Process affects every aspect of business, including how to get the employees you need to perform the work your company does. The Heggen Group can assist in analyzing your company’s processes to make the best use of talent, whether already employed or prospective.