It’s a new year and with that comes change. If you’re not happy with the way you hired last year, now is the perfect time to assess and realign. To kick you off, here is a list of outdated hiring practices that you shouldn’t be taking with you into 2023.
1. Disregarding internal hires
You probably have amazing talent right under your nose. It might seem easier to hire someone who comes with all the training and experience ready equipped, but you’re missing out on an opportunity to build within your own company. Instead of spending time and effort teaching someone external what your brand is about, consider the people who already know. Someone who already works for you A) already understands the company culture and processes, and B) has stayed with your company for a reason. And while there may be small hurdles like additional training needed, investing in the people who have already proven they are willing to invest in your businesses only makes your business stronger.
2. Fluffing job descriptions
Just as much as you expect honesty and clarity from your applicants, you should be providing your candidates the same thing. It’s not fair on your candidates to let them apply with a certain expectation, only to turn around later and change everything. Misleading job ads are one of the easiest hiring practices to leave behind. Mean what you say in your application. It keeps you from wasting both the candidate’s and your time and avoids drama at the offer stage.
3. Leaving out a salary range
Similar to the previous point – candidates want to know what to expect. Candidates will often completely ignore a job description without a salary range because it’s a risk to invest time in an application and interview process when the salary is a mystery. The hiring practice of adding a salary also helps filter out candidates who are under- or over-qualified, allowing you to focus on the candidates you’re ideally looking for. If you’re not sure what you should be offering, use a salary benchmarking tool. The more information you give your candidates, the more informed and streamlined your applications will be.
4. Overlooking good talent
We know how hectic it can get having to review hundreds of applications, and we know there’s a temptation to filter out candidates based on the smallest things to create a list of ‘perfect’ candidates. However, you might be ignoring great candidates in the process. Dig deeper if a candidate is almost perfect except for one thing. Often there’s a good reason for that one thing. Unless it’s a huge red flag or something that would threaten your business, it’s not worth disregarding good talent over one thing.
And don’t forget past promising candidates! A great hiring practice is to keep tabs of candidates you liked, especially if they went through the interview phase. By keeping a list of these candidates, you give yourself a pool of great talent to reach out to straight away without having to go through the hassle of sourcing.
5. Conducting one-sided interviews
Candidates are savvy. As much as you’re assessing how well they fit your company, they’re assessing how well your company fits them. Don’t make the mistake of making the interview feel like an interrogation. Almost 80% of Millennials (the most dominant demographic in the current job market) are looking for a culture fit and promising career potential. When you make it seem like the most important thing is what the candidate could do for your company, you’re telling the candidate that they wouldn’t be valued as an employee beyond their ability to do the job. Candidates are looking to work somewhere that values their humanity and personhood, so make sure that you’re making space for that in your hiring practices. Rather than asking question after question, try to make your interview feel more like a conversation, leaving plenty of opportunity for the candidate to ask questions too.
6. Making the interview process too long
This is a huge mistake when it comes to your hiring practices. The easiest way to show candidates that you don’t value their time is to drag out the interviewing and decision-making process. They’re likely investing as much time and effort in their job search as you are in the hiring process – often having to make excuses with their current employer to be at interviews. It’s rare that candidates are in a position to wait around too long for a potential offer.
Make sure that you have an idea of what you’re looking for when going into the hiring process and be aware of the time investment from your candidates. Combine interview steps where you can. Offer remote interviews if you have to meet with the candidate again. Obviously, you still need to complete your checks and research to be sure of your choice and to avoid hiring mistakes. But taking too long might lose you amazing talent.
7. Ghosting candidates
In the same vein as the previous point, make sure that you’re keeping your candidates up to date on their application status. Send a regret email if it’s a no, and touch base with your other applicants. There’s nothing worse than waiting to hear back about an opportunity only to be met with radio silence. 7 out of 10 job seekers say that they don’t hear back from potential employers. Making the effort to let your candidates know that the process is still underway is a simple but effective way of showing that you value their time and effort. Ghosts are really only fun at Halloween.
8. Offering little-to-no onboarding
Want to know why your employee turnover is so high? It might have to do with your onboarding process. A new employee is twice as likely to look for a new opportunity right away if the onboarding process is bad. Onboarding should be an important part of your hiring practices. Make sure that from the get-go you’re giving your new hires all the information they need to thrive at your company. The more you invest in the beginning the more confident the candidate will be what the company is about, what their role in that is, and their ability to do that based on the information they’ve been given. The easiest way to hold onto employees is to give them a solid foundation to sink their roots into.
The most important thing to avoid, and one that sums up the rest of this list is:
9. Ignoring the candidate experience
By approaching the hiring process with the attitude that the candidate needs you and you don’t need them, you show that you’re not planning to value their contributions. Investing the effort to build rapport with your candidates, getting to know them as people, valuing their time, and actually listening to what they say will always be a winning strategy. In fact, over half of applicants who were happy with the way they were treated in the hiring process said that they would consider applying to that company again, and over a third said they would recommend the company to people on the job market.