Best Practices For Hiring Staff

As the war for talent intensifies, companies that get the hiring process right will come out on top.

An organisation’s talent is widely recognised as its most important resource. As such, its’ success or failure can depend to a large extent on the quality of its hiring process, as every new hire has the potential to contribute to the growth of the company. Conversely, a bad hiring decision can severely impact a company’s operations and affect the congeniality amongst co-workers.

Managers need to ensure that they adopt a structured approach to hiring; one that encompasses industry best practices to minimise the potential of a bad hire. This will not only help you find the best person for the job, but also make the hiring process a more cost-effective and productive one.

As work-from-home (WFH) becomes more prevalent in the aftermath of the pandemic, companies also need to equip themselves with the right tools and skills to hire through remote channels and conduct virtual interviews effectively.

To help you on this journey, here are some hiring best practices that you may wish to consider.

Define the job

To find the right candidate to fill a role, it is important to first know exactly what the job entails. This means conducting an analysis of the role to gather relevant information about the responsibilities, skills, and requirements .

This exercise should involve speaking to human resource professionals and employees in the same, or similar role. The insights gained from these interviews will form the basis of an accurate job description, which will, in turn, help you plan your hiring strategy.

Look within first

Companies looking to fill any positions should look internally first before opening it up to the public. As employees are already part of the organisation, you will need less time to engage with and assess them, as they would already have a track record at the company.

What’s more, internal hires have assimilated to the workplace culture, and would have less issues adjusting to the new role. Promoting from within also sends a positive message to the rest of the employees that management values their contributions and is prepared to invest in their careers.

However, do note that hiring from within will create a gap in another part of the organisation that will eventually need to be filled. Relying too much on internal hires may also lead to less diversity within an organisation.

Get the word out

If you decide to look externally to fill a role, make sure that you tap on all avenues to advertise the position to widen your pool of potential candidates.

Such channels can include print media, industry-specific online portals and job boards, as well as business-oriented social media platforms like LinkedIn.

Do your homework

Conducting thorough background checks on potential hires is an important step when identifying talent. You need to verify all the skills, credentials and experience that are presented in a candidate’s resume. This can involve checking references from former supervisors, as well as educational qualifications and previous jobs held.

Some organisations may also pre-screen candidates by having a short chat with them over the phone before the actual interview. This will help determine early on whether a person is a good fit for the organisation, as well as other relevant information such as salary expectations. Alternatively, a simpler way to pre-screen candidates is to send a few questions via email that are relevant to the position.

A well-executed pre-screening will save time and make the interview more efficient and effective.

Keep the applicant pool manageable

While you do want to cast the net wide to increase your chances of finding the right person for the job, it does take time and money to identify, vet and assess potential employees.

With that in mind, you should try to narrow down the number of applicants for the role, by making clear in job advertisements non-negotiable requirements, as well as specific skills and traits that you are looking for.

Spend time to get to know the candidate

You shouldn’t rush the hiring of a new employee, as this may reduce your chances of finding the right person. Indeed, studies have found that the hiring process takes around 22 to 24 days, as companies spend time getting to know candidates before making a decision.

During this time, you should hold more than one interview and involve department heads and supervisors.

Recruit virtually

While hiring staff through remote channels is not new, many companies have been forced into doing so due to work-from-home restrictions. Employers should treat a video interview as seriously as traditional interviews.

As with in-person interviews , the goal is to facilitate a high-quality, professional experience reflecting your company’s image and culture. Hiring managers may want to record some practice sessions to get a better sense of their own body language and tone of voice when conducting interviews.

View candidates like customers

Most companies only respond to applicants if they want to interview them. However, potential hires should be seen as another stakeholder of your company. Treating them professionally and courteously from the initial stages of the hiring process will reflect well on your company’s culture and values.

This means keeping candidates in the loop during the hiring process, even if they don’t make it to the final stages of the interview. If done in a timely and professional manner, it will help boost your company’s reputation, with potential benefits down the line.