SelectOne Blog

How and Why Companies Fail at Hiring

man-person-street-shoes.jpgWe interact with many companies more concerned about finding the “right” person for important vacancies on their teams rather than identifying and impacting things more directly within their control

Modern day hiring is all about using data and information to increase the likelihood of successful outcomes, accountability and expectations, and connecting the dots from daily role contribution to organizational vision, mission, and purpose. 

It’s less about turning over the right rock to find a “perfect” person and skill set. 

So then, how and why do companies fail at hiring?

Lack of Post-Mortem

To what degree was the prior person successful or not in this role, and why? 

To the extent the last person in the role did well, figure out what it was about their performance that impressed and added value.  And, if the role was underperformed, it’s important to know why.  This information can be used to modify the expectations of the role and hiring process overall.

Lack of Alignment

How does the role we need to hire contribute to team and company success? 

If hiring managers / company leadership aren’t on the same page relative to what is needed and how it contributes to company and team objectives, it will be significantly more difficult for any new hire to be perceived as or actually successful.

Lack of Role Definition

What is expected out of this role and how will the new hire be measured against that standard? 

Once company leaders are on the same page with the role needed to advance the company, putting some structure to it will increase the likelihood of finding the right person.  A clearer role definition will help ensure skills, prior experience, and overall attributes are prioritized, sought, and evaluated.

Weak Recruiting Process

How will your company design a recruiting process to identify and capture the curve-busting best potential candidates? 

Posting ads is insufficient.  Seeking employee referrals alone won’t tip the scale.  And not all recruiters, internal and external, are the same. Leveraging emerging technology, individualized messaging, and cutting edge marketing methodologies is necessary to make sure you see the best prospects.

Inconsistent Evaluation of Candidates

How can the interview process be designed so managers and leaders are evaluating candidates against similar standards? 

Once a population of strong candidates is identified, it’s important to have hiring managers and team members driving the interview process evaluating candidates consistently.  This is rooted in alignment (see above) but extends to making sure the process from candidate to candidate and interviewer to interviewer is consistent.

Weak Employer Branding

Does your company look sharp and feature its best attributes to desirable candidates? 

A wise man once told me you need to sell the sizzle with the steak (you know who you are).  In a sea of corporate jargon, ultra-serious-sounding job postings, and blanketed template messaging, it is increasingly important to stand out by marketing your company as a destination employer. 

Tepid Candidate Experience

If you went through the process your company puts candidates through, would you be impressed? 

You’ve finally found a truly exceptional candidate, and at the very end of the process, they turn down a good offer!  Hiring processes are a two-way street.  Candidates, especially passive ones, are evaluating companies as much as companies are assessing them.  It’s critically important to treat every candidate coming through the process as though they’re excellent and desired; a failure to do this could leave an excellent, desirable candidate unimpressed and ready to walk.

At each juncture in the process of acquiring sharp, skilled people and leaders to build any company, there are ‘yes’ and ‘no’ paths along the decision tree leading to failure or success.  Avoid the common mistakes companies make above, and stack the odds in your favor to avoid a hiring fail.

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