12 tips to hiring right

Thursday 13th of October 2016

In its 2007 study of over three hundred companies, IQ Leadership, a leading US Human Resource consulting firm, discovered that nearly 50% of new employees failed within the first 18 months on the job. And interpersonal skills – not technical skills – were to blame.

Here are 12 tips from Paul Croteau that will help you avoid common hiring mistakes. For more, you can read Paul’s full article: Best Hiring Practices: Minimize Mistakes.

12 tips to hiring right

  • Create accurate job specifications – some companies refuse to have job descriptions, thinking they will restrict what employees can do. A good job description is the basic requirement to creating accurate job specifications. You can’t hire the right person for a task if you aren’t sure what those tasks are or what skills and personal attributes are required. As well, be sure to include organizational culture attributes that are important.
  • Involve the right people – sometimes a job search is confidential, but, in most cases, you need to consult with the managers who will be directly working with the new employee. Seek their input on the selection criteria and specifically focus on the interpersonal skills versus the technical skills.
  • Apply an appropriate search strategy – targeting and conducting your candidate search requires multiple avenues of advertising. Use a combination of newspaper, online job boards, social networking, and employee referral processes so that you get the widest circulation of your message.
  • Match resumes to skills criteria – make yourself a checklist and compare each resume to this list. Determine whether an 80% match would work and/or if you truly need a 100% match of skills and abilities. Arrange to interview only those individuals who strongly meet your criteria.
  • Train your interviewers – most managers do not regularly conduct employment interviews on a regular basis, so their candidate search and interview skills are typically quite rusty if they did indeed have them at all. Interviewers need to be trained in interview skills and must develop questions that are directly related to the knowledge and skills required for the job. Ask for specific examples or problems, challenges, and accomplishments. Know the questions that are deemed illegal and avoid them at all costs.
  • Prepare your candidates – share with your candidates as much information ahead of time as possible. Send them brochures, your strategic plan, or any other document that will help them to assess your company and the job. The more prepared the candidates are, the better they will be able to respond to your questions.
  • Limit your talk – if you are doing all the talking, then you aren’t learning enough about your candidate. Give as many details as possible but avoid the “run-at-the-mouth” syndrome. If you are doing all the talking, you are wasting time.
  • Create a multi-level assessment process – one interview will not do it. You need to create a multi-level process such as a plant tour, interviews with other employees, or engagement in a business simulation that will help you to see the practical skills candidates offer.
  • Manage the time lines – there is nothing worse than taking too much time to conduct your search. If this happens, you will lose candidates. They don’t want to wait; they want a new job. Prepare yourself for a process that takes approximately 6-to-8 weeks. Anything longer than this will create unnecessary problems.
  • Conduct broad reference checks – involve people who will work with the new candidate. Ask for references from a boss, a peer, and a subordinate to make sure you get a well-rounded response.
  • Plan for effective orientation – under any circumstances, it takes a new employee at least one year to become accustomed to a new job. At the same time, keep in mind that within the first 30 days, the individual will be making his/her mind up about whether the job was a good choice.
  • Hire an executive recruiter – Not only are these professionals highly skilled in their work, but they also have a broad network of candidates from which they can help locate an individual who will fit into your company.

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