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When it comes to building a successful business, one of the most crucial decisions you can make is hiring the right employees. As we’ve seen in tech over the past few years, bringing in the wrong candidate can be a costly mistake, impacting productivity, morale, and ultimately your bottom line.
To illustrate the importance of hiring the right employee, consider this scenario:
Imagine you're a small business owner who's looking to hire a new AE (Account Executive). You've narrowed the pool down to two candidates with great past performance, similar work experience, and qualifications, but one stands out as having a better fit with your company culture.
You decide to go with the other candidate based on their experience alone, and after a few months on the job, it becomes clear that they're struggling to meet their targets. They're also resistant to feedback, and coaching, and are showing evidence that they're not a team player. You're now faced with the difficult decision to let them go and start the hiring process all over again. This is going to cost a lot of money upfront, and sales will lag for another quarter while the new team member gets up to speed.
This is an example that all too many business owners have faced, and shows the importance of hiring the right employee. This situation could've easily been avoided if the small business owner had created criteria that matched the performance expectations of the role and showcases the importance of selecting the right candidate for the job.
So how can you improve your hiring process to increase the likelihood of hiring the right employee? Here are a few hiring process example tips:
- Clearly define the job requirements, the scope of work, and expectations - this is one of the biggest mistakes we see hiring managers make. If you're looking to hire an AE who can generate $180K per quarter in new deals, have your sales manager reverse engineer the actual activity level it takes to achieve that goal, and then create the job description.
- Use semi-structured interviews to ensure consistency and fairness - instead of relying on gut feeling and intuition, create an interview process that asks the same questions to all candidates. This way you’re getting a more accurate picture of their skillset and personality.
- Include assessments and tests to evaluate candidates' skills and knowledge.
- Check references and conduct background checks - I always ask for specific metrics in interviews so that I can verify them with references. This is hugely important when discussing hiring someone who contributes to revenues.
- Consider using technology, such as interview intelligence software, to assist in the process - This should be a no-brainer in the high-tech world we work in, but it's something that most of the companies with the best hiring track record have in common.
By following these steps, you can ensure that you're selecting the right candidate for the job and minimizing the risk of a bad hire who could do damage to your company, culture, or reputation long term.
An effective hiring process is vital for finding and selecting the best candidates for your organization. It involves a series of steps, from identifying the need to fill a position to onboarding the new hire.
We outline this entire process in, "The Ultimate Hiring Checklist," which you can use as an example of our effective hiring process.
The importance of an effective hiring process cannot be overstated, as we saw earlier in this article, the downside of a bad hire can be costly.
Conversely, the same could be said of a great hire as they can save you not only time, but make a quick ROI so they're a net positive to your business - not to mention saving time and money, reduce turnover, and improve overall team productivity and performance, and many other factors.
To create an effective hiring process, consider the following:
- What does this person actually need to do effectively to be considered a net positive for the business? This is how you will create your job description.
- Advertise the job in the right places to attract the right candidates. We like diversity, industry, and role-specific job boards as well as employees' social media networks.
- Never skip the screening. There's no replacement for a conversation, even if it's only 15- 30 minutes. Asking the necessary questions upfront will allow you to eliminate bad hires from the pool and focus your efforts on those who are the best fit for the role.
- Conduct background checks and reference checks.
- Provide feedback to unsuccessful candidates. Quite often your ATS (applicant tracking system) or Interview intelligence software can automate this step since it's never fun to tell someone they didn't get the job, but they need this feedback to close the loop and move on.
These are not always comfortable steps. But the hiring process is never an easy one - people's income is on the line and that means there's a large emotional component.
Go back to the first scenario we talked about in section one. What if the small business owner had made a different decision and hired the other AE candidate? What would have changed?
The honest answer is, we don't know. But, we can learn from our hiring mistakes and create a better recruitment and selection process moving forward.
This is why Pillar was created. Our video interview platform that's powered by Ai learns from the employee hiring and selection process and uses that data to help you make better hires. This is why our customers have lowered employee turnover by more than 50% in the last 12 months.
Our suite of tools including processes, candidate scoring tools, and interviewer coaching solutions creates an ecosystem that allows companies to create a more effective recruitment and selection process. The insights gleaned from each interview also encourage employers to think critically about their hiring decisions and consider the unique needs of each role so they can make better hires long-term.
Wondering how to hire the right person? Look for someone who's actually done it.
I know this is an oversimplified view, but past performance is huge, and your recruitment and selection process should be tailored to find the people who can actually prove that they've already done what you're hiring them to do.
Make no mistake, hiring the right person for the job requires careful consideration of more than just past performance. It must take into account the candidate's skills, experience, and fit with the organization.
This is why hiring has become even more of a challenge as technology reached levels of adoption we've never seen in history. It's not just about finding someone who meets the job requirements, but also someone who will thrive in the role and contribute to the company culture.
Hiring the right person for the job means hiring someone who will thrive and then creating a culture in which they can thrive.
I can't even count how many times I've talked to business owners and CEOs who want to hire young, hip, high-tech talent - but they're unwilling to allow remote or hybrid work environments or won't approve platforms to make them more effective in their role.
In late 2022, I interviewed a CEO who said he still required his people to be in the office at least 40 hours per week, only offered two weeks of vacation time, and wondered why his company averaged 80% turnover every year.
This is why you need not only the right people but also the right environment. I still stress the importance of hiring the right person for the job, but if you can't create a thriving culture, you'll experience high turnover which could cost the company millions.
A well-designed recruitment and selection process should take both factors into account and weigh each on its own merit.
Which leads us to, retention. Why is retention important in business? Retention is like the thermometer of your business. It tells you how well your recruitment and selection process is working in addition to the overall health of your organization.
Employees who are engaged in their work and feel valued by their employers will stay much longer than those who don't, which helps build a culture of attrition-proofing within the company.
Retention also saves money. The cost of replacing an employee can be 2-3 times the salary of that employee, so it's essential to build a culture and recruitment process which encourages employees to stay.
Finally, retention leads to better overall business performance. Employees who have been with the company for a few years or more are often much more familiar with their role and are far better suited to fill new positions in the organization as they open up. Employees with a long tenure have a depth of knowledge that's hard to find and almost impossible to transfer to new hires as they join the company.
For these reasons and many more, creating an incredible work culture will benefit your organization.
In conclusion, hiring the right person for the job is a complex process - understanding why retention is important and incorporating it into your recruitment and selection strategy will go a long way in making sure you get the most out of each hire, now and in the future.
If you're currently struggling with retention or have a hiring process that isn't generating the results you'd like it to, schedule a demo to chat with someone from our team. At Pillar, we've helped dozens of companies make better hires decrease turnover and lower hiring costs, and we'd love to help you do the same.