With top talent at a premium in sectors from cybersecurity to AV/IT, hiring great employees is more challenging than ever. And the last thing any company wants to face is hiring someone who doesn't work out. After all, replacing an employee can cost as much as 6 to 9 months of that employee's annual salary.
Here are 5 hiring mistakes to make certain you avoid.
1. Chasing Perfection
All too often we see hiring managers clinging too tightly to their checklists. Of course, there are certain prerequisites of any position, but if you are too set on an ideal you run the very real risk of missing out on a truly great candidate.
Or perhaps you are set on the idea of what your team should look like, the hiring equivalent of choosing from a take-out menu: one from column A, two from column B, etc... But if you let go of pre-set ideals and consider candidates with diverse backgrounds and unexpected skills, you will enhance the team as a whole. An outsider's perspective can be refreshing and add the kind of new energy and boost your need to move the needle higher.
Remember: working with people who are different from us makes us more creative, more diligent and harder-working.
2. Not Truly Knowing The Job
It's one thing to know what function you're hiring someone for, but it's another thing to really understanding how the role functions on a day-to-day basis.
One of the best tools at your disposal to understand any given role on your team is the exit interview. And while that might sound counterintuitive, it makes perfect sense. After all, what better way to understand what works and what doesn't than to hear from people who are on their way out?
Yes, certainly there will be those employees whose opinion you will have to take with a grain of salt, but if you take care to ask the right questions and really listen to the answers you receive, you stand to learn an awful lot about the job you are now faced with filling.
So before you go into interviews to fill a role, take the time to talk to the people who have done the job. If you do, you'll not only be able to represent the position accurately, but it will also help you look for the candidate best suited to do the job.
3. Forgetting That Time Truly Is Of The Essence
Every search has its own parameters. Some jobs demand to cast a wide net due to location, skillset or competition for talent. Others need to be filled as quickly as possible in order to ensure that critical concerns are handled. But no matter the extenuating circumstances your company needs to have an established hiring protocol.
While it may seem an obvious system to have in place, too many companies do not have clear hiring policies in place. But taking the time to build a set of protocols not only makes it easier for your hiring managers, but it also sends a stronger message to candidates that you are a desirable company to work for.
In terms of how long you should spend on a search, that will depend on the job you're filling. But take care to never allow the process to go on for too long, otherwise, candidates will either lose interest, continue to take meetings at other companies, or decide you are not interested in them and take themselves out of the running.
4. Trying To Get Away With Less
Trying to undercut the competition might look good on paper, but it will not help you to attract top talent. If you're offering compensation that is not in line with your sector you are not only going to be less appealing to candidates but you're also selling yourself short.
The best guideline to follow is a candidate's current compensation package. If you are not able to meet what they are currently making or beat it, adjust the candidates you are considering. Otherwise, you'll just be wasting your time as well as the candidates.
5. Forgetting You're Also Selling
It's easy to forget that while you're vetting a candidate, they too are interviewing you. They're looking to see if your company supports a culture where they'll feel at ease, supported and can foresee an upward path for themselves. Since more of our time is spent at work than at home with friends and family, the contemporary worker wants to know that they'll be spending their time somewhere they'll feel valued.
Just as college recruiters have become marketing machines, pitching students why they're the best choice for their education, you too have to sell candidates on why your position is the one that they should take.