Three Mistakes You’re Making With Your Hiring Process

  • By Mike M
  • February 2022
hiring process - interview

Every company wants to avoid mistakes, especially when they’re hiring. If they don’t get it right, it’s costly.

We know, hiring is not a simple process. Besides the several steps involved (posting, screening, interviews, reference checks, and final selection), there are multiple factors to consider about the applicants like skills, education, experience and  fit. And if you are in a rush, or don’t hire that often, it’s easy to take shortcuts – that you will pay for later.

But even with a well-honed recruitment process, it’s possible to make some mistakes – either because you haven’t considered the implications, or you didn’t think it would make a difference.

Here are a few such mistakes you can address in your process.  

1. Failing to market the role

When your company is looking to hire someone, recruitment should be looked at as marketing. The same way you market your products and services, you should market your jobs. We see it too often where companies take a buying approach to recruitment: sitting back and waiting for applicants to come to them. Here are a few things to consider to properly market your role: 

    1. Write a job posting, not a job description. A job description is an internal company document that lists roles and responsibilities. A job ad should be about the candidate. It should be written in a way that as candidates read it, they think to themselves “wow that sounds like me”. It should talk about the company, what they can expect in the role and most importantly, tell a story. You want a candidate to be able to picture themselves in the role and working for your company. 
    2. Use your employees and social networks to advertise your positions. Your employees already know what it is like to work for your organization, they are your best source to find other employees who would fit your company culture. Make it easy for your employees to be able to share your open positions through their social networks. 
    3. Consider your company reviews on sites such as Glassdoor and Indeed. We live in a review-based society and over 80% of candidates now read reviews before deciding whether or not to apply for a position. It is important that as you market your positions you are aware of your online presence and your company brand. 

When you go to post your next job, put on your marketing hat and think about how to make the position compelling for applicants. 

2. Relying only on resumes for screening

We know many applicants aren’t transparent in resumes or cover letters. And we realize there are gaps that must be filled through interviews, but we need a way to make some quick decisions to determine top candidates during the interview selection process. So many take a chance on skimming; a few use “keyword” search (a game that resume writers know all too well). We propose another way: filtering candidates  by personality traits. We’ll tell you how. But first, here’s why. 

A resume reports education and experience: what someone has learned and done in the past. What it doesn’t tell us is who they are or how they are naturally motivated. Without that information, we don’t know if what they have done is what they enjoy. And there are far too many people in the workplace doing what they don’t enjoy. In fact, author and global researcher Marcus Buckingham reports that around  70% employees don’t enjoy the work they do. 

By learning someone’s personality traits, not only do we learn how they think, decide and relate to others, but we also gain valuable insight into their natural abilities. This is priceless information if companies want naturally motivated and productive employees every day.

For example; a qualified candidate  for a sales position may show a history of great sales numbers. But was it because of a natural ability, or was it simply due to a great opportunity – everyone wanted what they had to offer? The difference is crucial.

 If someone doesn’t have the natural ability, no amount of skill will motivate top performance. The best motivation comes from within, by those with the innate ability and the right personality for the job. 

But how do you possibly learn all this by reading a resume?  It’s virtually impossible! 

But there is an answer: trait-based assessments, like Concord’s industry-leading TRAITS Assessment, that has been proven by science to accurately measure core characteristics. Note: there are many common personality tools in the marketplace useful for personal development or team building, but look further for those with the reliability required for selection, promotion and succession planning.

3. Lack of clarity about job requirements 

In our experience, this is a step in the hiring process too many overlook. 

The greatest failing in recruiting high performers
(at any level, in any organization)
is the lack of clarity in defining job behavioral requirements

for the position you’re recruiting for.

Fully understanding – and agreeing on what’s expected in the position benefits everyone: those who interview, the hiring manager and the applicant.  It begins with a closer look at the job description. Is it current? Is it clear? Does everyone agree on the key responsibilities and which are most important?

This kind of review helps to:

  1. Inform marketing efforts (as in #1, above).
  2. Provide a background for the interview process. This will help you ask relevant questions and ensure that every interviewer is consistent  in the evaluation process.
  3. Paint an accurate picture for candidates – who can use this information to gain clarity about expectations.

And we would add one note: part of the job evaluation should include the behavioural traits required for top performance in every position. To put it another way, what is the ideal personality for the position? Do you need someone who is outgoing or reserved? Do they need to be detail-oriented or “big picture” thinkers? Are there strong decisions they are required to make on their own, or is it about providing helpful support? Simple questions, but the answers help to set a benchmark of expected behaviours – and find people who are motivated to do them!

These are mistakes even seasoned recruiters can make – but you can avoid.

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