Skilled, talented, dedicated employees – we all want the best hires when we need to fill a position. It’s imperative to try to get them on our team fast, because superior candidates don’t last long on the job market.
Think ahead to streamline your hiring process. Standardize what you can. Not only will you speed up the process, you’ll be better empowered to make the fairest comparisons among job applicants. Draft a template of any required internal memos; you can adapt these to get the process started more quickly when a position needs to be filled. Assemble a hiring checklist to help discover procedures that can be made more efficient. Decide which hiring websites you will use. Additional items and “fast tips” to consider:
Advertising the position
Write a thorough and clear job description, with realistic job specs. Make this a high priority and don’t rush; it’s critical and establishes efficiency in hiring. Precise expectations help you identify your best first-round candidates and prevents clogging the system with unsuitable applicants.
Fast tip: Cut 15 percent off of posting times, then see whether there is any measurable negative impact on the quality of your applicants.
First off, create the most helpful interview questions. Ditch the over-used ones that come with pre-set answers (e.g. “What’s your greatest weakness?”). Committee members need a crystal-clear picture of what success looks like in the position. Use it as the basis for interview questions. Consider using technology to reduce scheduling hassles for interviews.
Fast tip: Use a hiring scorecard with every candidate, to be certain they meet your requirements for experience, certifications and education.
Contemplating the talent you have
Current employees and their networks are often wonderful sources of referrals and candidates. Moreover, someone on your staff might want to make a lateral move or change jobs within your company. Hiring internally is great for morale, as well. You can speed up the process by asking your top performers for referrals.
Fast tip: Limit delays by posting internal preference and external job announcements to run at the same time.
Rethinking the offer process
Ascertain a top candidate’s criteria for accepting the job. You’ll be able to avoid wasting time renegotiating an offer or know when to move on to the second-ranked candidate.
Fast tip: Give an incentive for a candidate to say yes quickly – perhaps even before they leave the building.
Outsourcing at least part of the process, like recruiting and initially screening job candidates, could save you substantial costs and time while it allows you to fill a position more quickly. Using a staffing company for the hiring and onboarding process further cuts your administrative costs and is especially effective for smaller companies who have a limited HR staff.
Fast tip: In a super-hurry? Remember, recruiters and staffing agencies can be your best bet – and may be able to fill a position immediately if they know the right person for the job.
Today’s pressing needs are best addressed with a long-range plan that anticipates your needs for talent over the coming months and years. Think long-term to avert the urgency that arises when a position suddenly needs to be filled.
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