Perfecting the Recruitment Process

Posted 28th Sep 2017

Fresh talent is vital for the life of any business; delivering skills, new ideas, injecting specialism and personality into complex and exciting environments. However, it is all too easy to drive talent away, rather than attract it, and so it’s essential to understand the importance of perfecting the process that will ultimately see new team members welcomed into your organisation.

To get these exciting innovators and new personalities into your company, you have to go through the hiring process - the very process that reinforces the desire of an individual to work for you and your company…not the bothersome side project that many perhaps consider it to be. However, and while many of us recruiters are far from perfect we know, many companies get the hiring process somewhat wrong at times and so send waves of frustration throughout the world of recruitment and local hiring market place. A flawed or badly executed recruitment process can often cast a shadow over an organisation, make it significantly less attractive to work for and cause ripples throughout the business that can have dramatic consequences…but worry not, there are ways to greatly enhance and even perfect the recruitment process by remembering the following…

1. Communication

We can all be found lacking in this respect at times, but when it comes to recruiting - where time is so often of the essence – solid, regular communication is the foundation of a successful hire and should never be neglected or down played. For the candidate it’s a high-pressure time of research and consideration, time to be taken off work, preparation, interviews and, hopefully, big decisions to make – the candidate shouldn’t have to factor into their consideration and decision making process unnecessarily poor, or even essentially absent, communication. If you feel you’ll struggle to reach someone regularly throughout the process, it’s worth agreeing on the best way to communicate at the outset and then set clear expectations accordingly. Foresee any ‘regular contact’ issues if possible and put a strategy in place to work around this.

2. Recruitment is a two-way street

This can’t be stressed enough, because too often it is still, seemingly, forgotten. Candidates aren't the only ones ‘making a pitch’ throughout the recruitment process. A ‘job’ now, for so many people, no longer means just that. Work should be an experience with potential, personal and professional development opportunities, sound ethical policies, flexible working, the list goes on… okay, some industries evolve slower than others, but offering an environment, as well as a remuneration package that’s competitive in your industry is essential in recruitment’s two-way street and you have to sell your job opening and indeed yourself / company to every candidate as hard they do to you.

3. Feedback

Some call it good manners, some call it good business practice, either way we feel it’s paramount. Yes, it is good manners and it is good business practice, but it is also essential for the development of that candidate regardless of the outcome following their interview(s). They’ll also thank and respect you for taking the time to supply them with something constructive, even if it’s minimal. Further, third party CV submissions require feedback to allow the recruiter to do the best job they can. Not only will feedback help the recruiter source the best or better candidates, for hiring managers it also helps further clarify the exact nature of the role they are recruiting for and what it is they really seek in a suitable applicant.

4. You have competition

Remain appreciative of the fact that your company is very likely not the only one your candidate is interviewing with...and that other companies may very well be prepared to move quicker than you are. Many recruiters and their hiring clients have been operating in a ‘candidate-driven’ market for some time now…and as a result, generally speaking, the candidate is king i.e. they are the commodity in demand, which leads to choice for them and often plenty of it. Poor communication, little to no feedback and, if successful, a somewhat ‘deflating’ remuneration offer (more on this in a second) will quite possibly drive that good candidate to your competitor.

5. Think carefully about your offer

We’re generally referring to salary here and it is unfortunately still quite common to encounter somewhat ‘lower than expected’ offers; an act that can on occasions devalue, demotivate and even subsequently demolish the hard work of everyone involved. Offering a salary lower than expected (even if just an ‘initial offer’ and so negotiable) very often doesn't save money in the long run. In many instances it can lose you that coveted, hard fought for, new employee or perhaps set you off on a less than ideal beginning to what you both are hoping will be a great partnership.

Recruitment and hiring can in reality be a complicated and lengthy process at times…and with the human element on both sides of the fence, mistakes and even unforeseen circumstances do inevitably occur. However, by heeding suggestions in the above key areas of the process, both you and your candidate (and of course eventual eager new employee) will enjoy a far better all-round experience and increase the chances of getting the result you set out to achieve.

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