Hiring a new staff member can be a long and difficult process at the best of times but when you’ve got time management issues, it can be even more challenging. The following tips can help busy managers to maximise their time without minimising the quality of your candidates.
Try to give yourself as much time as possible. If you have to rush through the recruitment process to fill a position as quickly as possible, you are likely to end up with an imperfect candidate. We understand there are often enormous time pressures such as in the event of a sudden resignation or dismissal, but in situations where you know a vacancy is coming up, it’s a good idea to get started on the hiring process straight away. Time invested now will save you time later having to train, performance manage or replace the imperfect replacement.
The hiring process doesn’t start with interviewing – if you’re well organised, it will begin long before you meet your first candidate. Start by considering the position carefully and the skills and qualifications needed to do the job satisfactorily. Consider the person who is currently in the position and the skills and attributes they possess that make them good at their job.
Make two lists, one that lists all the technical skills required for the position (for example, do they need a degree? What kind of previous experience should they have?) and another listing the attitude/behaviours (do they need to juggle priorities, is attention to detail critical, or is it important that they are able to listen and understand the needs of clients?). Once you’ve made your list, you should have a good idea of your ideal candidate.
With this candidate in mind, start writing your job description. Be as detailed as you like. A well defined job description should help to weed out people who aren’t right for the job.
If possible, try to test for these skills before you even start interviewing. If computer skills are required, ask the candidate to complete a computer test when they submit their application. This will help to weed people out, but it will also allow you to fast track any applicants who perform highly.
If you already have great staff, try asking around for recommendations. Set up a referral system that your employees can add to so that when it is time to start looking, you’ve got a good foundation to start from.
Conducting an efficient interview is a skill that takes years to perfect. If you don’t have a lot of experience with interviews, it might be a good idea to delegate this responsibility, either to someone else within the company or to a hired third party.
But perhaps the most important thing to remember is that the perfect candidate doesn’t exist. You are never going to find the idealised applicant that you’ve built up in your mind, so don’t draw out the process looking for them or skip over great candidates while holding out for the perfect one.
If you are interested in completing online training to improve your recruitment and selection skills then jump over to our online training site – HHRLearn.