Recruitment can be a long and expensive process which makes it all the more important that you hire the right person for the job the first time around. At times hiring can seem a bit like a lucky dip, especially if you haven’t got a good set of recruitment steps in place to help you find your needle in the haystack. So if you’re consistently finding that you’re hiring the wrong person for the job, then check out this ultimate guide to getting it right.
Start by writing a good job description
Hiring the right person for the job starts with properly describing the job itself. Companies have a tendency to sugar coat job descriptions or give flat generic explanations of the roles and responsibilities they entail, neither of which help potential candidates to work out if it is really the role for them.
When writing a job description your number one rule should be to be honest, if the role involves out of hours work, then mention it, if the position requires the person to use a specific software then put that in the job description too. It’s far better to receive fewer applicants, but know that they have applied for the job warts and all, rather than lose them in the first week or two of their position when they realise what it really entails.
Include a salary range
Whether to include a salary range or not in a job description is a hot topic of conversation in the recruitment world but in general, by not including one a potential candidate will assume that it has been omitted because you are paying below the average price and trying to rip them off. Pretending that money isn’t important to people making career choices is kin to sticking your head in the sand.
It’s not difficult these days to look up the average physical therapist salary using services such as Glass Door, so do yourself and your candidates, a favour and be transparent about money from the get-go. It’s perfectly acceptable to give a fairly broad salary range and to specify that the salary awarded will be dependant on experience but by not giving one at all the first question on any applicants lips will be ‘what’s the salary’ instead of ‘am I right for this job’ and ‘do I want to work here?’
Advertise in the right places
If you’ve gone through the hard work of creating a rounded and honest job description, now you want to make sure that you are advertising for the position in the right places. Large recruitment sites such as Indeed, Monster and Total Jobs are a good place to start but can provide quantity over quality of candidates.
To make sure you’re putting your advert in front of the right people for your industry also try to advertise on smaller platforms, such as Work In Startups if you are a start-up business or sector-specific niche job boards like Charity Jobs for not-for-profit positions. Niche job boards are one of the best tools at your recruitment disposal allowing you to target your search, saving you time and energy weeding out unsuitable candidates.
Perform a preliminary screening but don’t be too strict at this stage
With your advert in the right places, you will now likely be seeing some results and it’s time to start a preliminary screening process to filter out candidates that you wish to speak to or invite to an interview. The preliminary screening process is perhaps one of the most overlooked parts of the recruitment process and is the point at which you risk screening out the perfect candidate.
Trawling through tens if not hundreds of CV’s can be mind-numbing but it’s important to try and give them all the attention they deserve. Don’t be fooled by pretty images and graphics, (unless it’s a graphic design position you are trying to fill), and try to be impartial to flashy designed CV’s as these can often be style over substance.
Start by writing down a list of must-have things that you want to screen based on, this could be years of experience, proficiency with certain software, or a required skill such as being able to drive. Next, work methodically through your CV’s checking for these components, and if a candidate does not have one or more of your must-have things then you will need to discard them.
That being said there may be certain must-haves on your list that can be learnt and if a person’s CV is standing out to you for all the right reasons but they have not used your specific software before, then consider whether this is something that could be learnt and whether sacrificing their ability to hit the ground running could be worth it in order to take advantage of the other skills that they bring to the table.
Conduct two interviews
Having screened your candidates down to an interview ready pile, it’s time to start the interview process. The most effective way to thoroughly interview candidates is by performing a two-stage interview, this can be performed as two-separate interviews or as one interview split into two halves. The first interview you conduct will want to be a structured interview.
A structured interview involves asking the same set of questions to every candidate which is helpful for drawing comparisons and comparing answers. By asking each candidate the same questions you can be sure that this stage of the interview is fair. The next interview can then be an unstructured interview, which is more fluid and allows you to delve deeper into a candidates personal life and personality.
Unstructured interview questions are often open-ended, which allows them to be answered in a number of different ways, giving the candidate more power to create an emotive and personal response. Because unstructured interview questions are not prepared in advance the data they collect is referred to as qualitative. By using a combination of both interview techniques you can be sure to have gained a rounded set of data from which to make your decision.
Get the opinion of a member of their future team
If your position will involve the person working closely as the manager of or within a team then it can also be beneficial to bring one of their future team members into the unstructured part of the interview so that they can give you their honest opinion as to whether the person is someone they can see themselves working with.
A surprising number of interviews are conducted by people with no connection to the role in which the person will end up in which can lead to them not being accepted or liked by their future team. By having a team member in the interview process you allow your employees to feel as though their own opinions matter and may dodge a bullet if it turns out that a person is not a good personality fit.
Give a decision promptly
Once you have conducted your interviews give your decision to the unsuccessful candidates and the successful candidate promptly. Quality candidates are often not on the market for long and you can’t expect them to wait around forever waiting for your decision.
Have a trial period
Finally, although by following the above steps you should have found someone who understands the role and is a good technical and cultural fit for your company, you should always give them a trial period in case you decide that they are not right for you or they decide that you are not the right fit for them.