The Hiring Mistake Most Every Company Makes
Forget the old way of doing things; it's time to examine your hiring process through a new lens.
By Alexandre Pachulski
There is a mistake so common in hiring practices that most companies don't even realize they're making it. In many cases, they're simply doing what they've always done.
See if this scenario sounds familiar:
Your company experiences some sort of change in business -- maybe sales increase or someone resigns -- and then management works with the HR team to determine which positions need to be filled. Job descriptions are posted on relevant websites or submitted to recruiters. Perhaps there is an internal announcement and invitation for current employees to apply if they're interested. In other words: Your company sets out lures and waits for potential candidates to bite.
Then they collect CVs, manually sort through them, start to arrange interviews and juggle schedules. The more skill required for the job, the more time the hiring process is likely to take. Your business, however, still demands what's needed, so employees must find ways to adapt until the right person is found. It's often stressful. Sometimes, it takes so long to find the right person that they end up compromising on a "good enough" person -- just to fill the role and be done with it.
This is a story we know all too well. For many, it's simply the way it works.
I'm here to say no, that way doesn't work all that well and yes, there is a better way.
I'll even dare to say that using that traditional approach is a mistake.
It's time for us to evolve hiring practices and use technology to better connect the right people with the right opportunities, at the right time.
It's time for us to let go of the old way -- there is a new sourcing paradigm.
Scout for talent all the time, not just when you think you need it
Be proactive, not reactive. Let go of the mindset that only values recruiting when a position is open. Instead of focusing on skills specific to a role, know what qualities and characteristics are important to you and your organization. For example: At my company, there are three things all new hires must have: (1) a natural fit within our culture, (2) a passion for the work they do, and (3) a willingness to take risks for the sake of growth and innovation. With that in mind, we have an awareness that helps us recognize anyone, at any time, in any context, who has the potential to be a great fit.
Entrust all employees to recommend talent, not just management or HR
Your employees are your best ambassadors; they know your business, your culture and who would be a great fit. They should be at the heart of your recruitment efforts. Encourage them to not only share opportunities with their networks, but also to recommend talented people they think embody your company culture. Data also shows that a strong referral process can save significant money, onboarding time, and better retention.
Have a standing invitation for people to apply, not just when you post a position
Always keep an open invitation for talented people to submit their CV and ideas as to how they'd like to bring value to your company. A truly talented person is always worth talking to and creating a connection with -- you never know what could come of it. So, make sure you're receptive and encouraging to new talent.
Look beyond the CV -- see what prospective talent creates online
If you're just evaluating candidates based on their CV or resume, you're only seeing a fraction of the picture. What are they communicating to the world on their social media channels? What influence might they have built with their followers? What kind of leadership are they demonstrating? What endorsements and recommendations have they received on LinkedIn? Widen your view to get a better understanding of what value they may bring. This is a great indicator of what they can contribute to your company.
Leverage integrated technology to collaborate and nurture a talent database
Stop using disconnected methods such as paper files, Excel spreadsheets, or even standalone software designed for HR use to manage your talent. They aren't conducive to collaboration, nor are they integrated and working from a single database that allows multiple departments to contribute and reference relevant data that's up-to-date.
This evolution of hiring talent will seem like a revolution for many companies. Maybe even for yours! I won't pretend that this process is easy or something that can be done overnight. But the fact remains that you simply can't afford to keep doing what you've been doing. The evolution in hiring practices will move forward, with or without you. So why not embrace how much better your hiring process can be?
Alexandre Pachulski serves as the Chief Product Officer at Talentsoft. Alexandre is an accomplished author of several books on HR themes and has a blog dedicated to Talent Management. He holds a Doctorate in IT with a thesis on the identification of key competencies within a company and a master's degree in artificial intelligence.