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Managing the Hiring Process

Posted about 4 years ago by Rob Markwell

n our previous mailer, we discussed the often thorny subject of how you select the best recruitment partners to work with. Once you’ve identified potential candidates for interview, how you then manage the recruitment process can have a large bearing on whether you secure their services, or whether they opt to join one of your competitors.

In a market where the very best talent is in short supply, your ‘employer brand’ plays an extremely important part of the hiring process, even for those candidates you reject. Why is this?

Quite simply, the hiring experience can have a big impact on how candidates subsequently feel about your company and what they say to their peers... leave a good impression and you’re likely to have more options when you next hire, leave a bad impression and a former interviewee might be warning off your next superstar employee.

This may sound dramatic but it happens far more often than you might appreciate. When thinking about becoming an employer of choice, companies tend to consider pay, benefits, environment, etc.  There’s no question these are all important factors, however, when done well, we’ve seen the interview process alone make candidates want the job (even when they weren’t previously aware of the company). We’ve also witnessed candidates who didn’t ultimately get the job, refer others to clients as they’d had such a good experience during the interview process.  

Now, we’re not suggesting the power is entirely with the candidate in the hiring process – you’re still the employer who will be giving them a job – but it’s essential to remember that interviews and the hiring process are a two-way street and that, in a candidate driven sector, the good ones generally have choice.

Points to consider during the interview process are:

  • Why do people enjoy working for you? / Why should they want to work for you?
  • How do you define your culture?
  • What are your ambitions & what does this mean for people joining?

Do also bear in mind that after the interview, actions often speak louder than words:

  • Do you give feedback? Even if candidates aren’t suitable, you must ensure they receive feedback asap (either directly or via your recruiter). Slow/non-existent feedback has a damaging effect on your employer brand and you’d be surprised how quickly word gets around.
  • Do you keep momentum going throughout the process? Everyone is busy, we understand that. But one of the worst mistakes companies make is dragging the hiring process out and leaving weeks between meetings. This sends out a negative message to candidates, either about your seriousness (in them or in hiring per se), or your internal processes, or both. Plus you run the distinct risk of losing them to other offers.
  • Found someone you like? Move quickly to secure their services – don’t let it stall at this point.

Post offer – do you do anything to engage with your new hire before they join? We’ve seen some great examples of comms during this period that really get the new hire fired up about starting their new role. This inevitably filters through to others and heightens positive perceptions of your business.

Do you have any other thoughts/experiences on how to manage the hiring process to best effect? We’d love to hear them