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Talent is the most important factor in your company’s competitive advantage. Your people are your most valuable asset and the key to your success. It’s that simple.

So, is your hiring process defined and robust enough to make this happen? Use this checklist as a guide:

Benchmark Every Job

Benchmarking establishes a measurable, objective set of criteria for you to make the right candidate match.

  • Start with the “hard needs” of the position. These include educational requirements, experience, industry knowledge and technical proficiencies.
  • Look for the right “soft skills.” These may not be as clearly evident, but they are equally critical. Increasingly, research has proven that capabilities in areas such as problem solving, multi-tasking and team building have more to do with long-term job success than hard skills.
  • List key accountabilities. These are the three to six tasks that must be completed as part of the job, due to their impact on business results. They should occupy about 80 percent of your new hire’s time at work.

Make a Plan – And Stick to It

By establishing a checklist of hiring criteria, you can be more objective and stay on point when it comes to hiring the best person for the job.

  • Call a meeting of involved team members to review the job description and related requirements.
  • Outline the steps and time frame for filling each vacancy.
  • Start with a job analysis, outlining the duties, responsibilities, skills and work environment of the position. This is fundamental to developing a job description which, in turn, sets the groundwork for recruiting the right candidate.

Pre Screen

Gather as much information about candidates as you can before moving on to personal interviews.

  • Refer to your hiring list as you scan resumes, cover letters and applications. Then, narrow the field down to candidates worthy of a phone interview.
  • Pay attention when checking references. Hesitation or an attempt to dodge a question may be a sign that a candidate is not as qualified as they claim.
  • Fact check. One in three resumes omits essential information and up to 40 percent can be false or misleading when it comes to previous employment, education and/or experience.

Be Realistic

Keep an open mind, throw pre-conceived notions out the window, and don’t be lulled into believing you’ll find a clone of yourself or your current superstars.

  • Divide desired traits into two categories: “must haves” and “desirables.” The former are non-negotiable; you can eliminate candidates who fail to meet these requirements. The latter are those qualities you’d really like to see, but realistically could move forward without or develop later in an otherwise strong candidate match. Accept the fact that you may not get all the desirables, at least not right up front.
  • Avoid being trapped by the “halo effect” which occurs when you are so enamored by one particular candidate trait that you fail to see their shortcomings.
  • Likewise, be alert for the “clone effect” whereby you hire the person with the skill set most like your own, even though they aren’t the best fit for the job.

Working with a recruiting firm can help ensure that your hiring process is on the winning track. To learn more, read our related posts or contact BrainWorks today!


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