When the hiring process takes too long, companies lose top talent to their competitors. A recruiting firm can streamline the hiring process, but only if the recruiter has access to the hiring manager – the ultimate decision maker. With the cooperation of the hiring manager, the recruiter can fine tune the search parameters and receive valuable feedback. This allows the recruiter to create a shortlist of high-quality candidates quickly. As a hiring manager, what should you be doing to speed up the process?
Plan ahead to streamline your hiring process. Make hiring a priority and always be on the lookout for great talent even when you don’t have an urgent need. Establish a relationship with a recruiter in your industry. When you need to make a hire, you are prepared to get the process off to a speedy start. If you’re not working with a recruiter, continually network and have an internal referral policy in place. It is also important to know what you want. If you know you want to check references from your top candidates, request this information in the first round of interviews to execute if you want to proceed. If you wait to request references later in the process, this can end up adding 4-5 days to the finish line.
Be Clear and Accurate
Clear communication is paramount. Most importantly, you need a detailed job description that accurately reflects the job responsibilities and skills needed to attract top talent. Coherent, honest descriptions will cut down on the number of people who apply that do not have the right skill set. By defining the responsibilities, establishing salary guidelines, and being prepared to share company benefits and perks, you will proactively shorten the hiring process.
Be Selective in the First Round
The face to face interview phase is one of the most time-consuming. The more selective you are in choosing who to invite in for interviews, the more time you save. First and foremost, screen the applicants thoroughly and pinpoint and eliminate those with red flags. Conducting first round telephone interviews is another good way to narrow down the candidate pool. This will save you a significant amount of time during the interview phase.
Communicate the Timeline
Let the candidate know at the end of the interview when you will follow up with them and stick to your timeline. In today’s job market, a lag in time in this part of the process may result in your top candidate securing another position with a competitor. You want them to know exactly what to expect moving forward. Don’t give them the silent treatment! An engaged candidate will continue to feel valued and excited about the new opportunity. Establish communication with the prospective candidate, with a call, email, or industry related article or blog. The key here is to communicate, engage and connect – and you will reap the benefits of making and retaining a successful hire.
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