Hiring Mastery (Continued)

Posted by on Nov 17, 2016 in Scott's Notes | 0 comments

Making Hiring Better

In our last newsletter, I posted that despite all the technological advances we’ve achieved, the ability to identify, attract, and hire great candidates has become more challenging rather than simpler.  Part of the reason is that we’ve either forgotten or abandoned some basic human principles as a result of our misplaced overreliance on that technology.  By keeping in mind the human element and being purposeful and well-intended on the ultimate goal, we can collectively find and hire the right person for the role.

In order to assist with that, I suggested there are some fundamental ways to improve the internal talent acquisition and improve results even when “life happens,” which include:

1)    Recruit your interview team: Ensure that only the people you need, who can add value or are organizationally necessary, are part of the interview team.  Gain their commitment to the process by investing time with them on the requirements of the position, explaining your priorities and what you need from them as participants.  Have back-ups for when there are scheduling conflicts.  Set expectations that any candidates they see will have been well-screened and are serious contenders.  Avoid wasting days after interviews by letting them know up front that their written feedback is important and required immediately after the interview.

2)    Schedules:  These are VERY fluid when dealing with the daily demands on executives (both clients and candidates). If you recruit a committed team of interviewers (and back-ups), this will ensure they prioritize your interviews.

  • The more people on the interview team, the more schedules to manage, so start with a MVP approach (minimally viable participants).
  • Set the number of interview rounds and the type (Skype, phone, in-person) at the start of the search (and stick to it as the candidates’ expectations will be based on this information).
  • Be conscious that you will be recruiting passive candidates that have a job and balance the number of rounds and locations to a minimum. Use technology like Skype, employ an interview day, and schedule on-site interviews on Fridays or Mondays.  Design your interview process to be effective and candidate-friendly.
  • Recognize the negative correlation between large numbers of interviewers and rounds of interviews, and the ability to identify and hire the best talent.

3)    Assessment:  How well your team interviews leaves an impression on the candidate.  Passive candidates are equally interested in a good interview process that helps ensure a good fit for both parties.

  • Set a tenor of “Qualifying Candidates IN” rather than “Screening Them OUT.”  Give each of the interview team members a role.  This ensures that you get pertinent questions answered and minimizes the candidate repeatedly answering the same questions.
  • When your interviewers are reading from the same playbook (consistent understanding of the position and requirements), it reflects well on the company and increases the candidate’s interest.

4)    The Perfect Candidate: DOES NOT EXIST.  Knowing your top three priorities will enable you to rank the pool and make a decision confidently on a final candidate.  Remember, you are likely hiring someone who has 80%+ of your desired requirements but all three of the top priorities.

  • Have confidence in the process, from the extensive research, engagement and screening on the front end, to the interview team assessment on the backend.  Utilizing this process, a pool of 2-4 highly qualified and interested candidates is an excellent result and should result in a successful hire.

5)    Selling:  It is a two-way street (that is why they call it “recruiting!”).  If a candidate appears to be a good fit based on the responses to your questions, leave them time to ask their questions and remember to start selling in the interview.

6)    Make the offer:  Make sure your HR partner is engaged early in the process and knows when you are entering the final round of interviews.  They should be poised to act quickly if a final candidate is identified.

  • After the interview, the momentum on the candidate side is at the highest level and every day that passes allows more variability to enter, diminishing the big “M.”
  • Leverage TGR to know what is required to make your best offer first.

This is the approach employed by our clients who run highly effective search processes.  This has been proven to work in companies as large as General Motors and as small as private equity firms investing in startups.  Like any business process – everyone can do it if they are committed to a successful outcome as part of a team effort.  We are happy to consult with you on mastering your hiring process or answer any questions you have.