Understanding the recruitment process is a necessary skill for any successful manager. After all, the cost of a bad hire can be significant, not only in terms of time and money spent searching for a suitable candidate, but also by negatively affecting team morale.
Robert Half is the employee recruitment expert, and we're sharing our top tips on how to recruit employees to help your company thrive. From knowing what you're looking for in your next hire to recognizing those qualities when you see them in the candidates you interview, our free resources help you feel capable and confident throughout the employee recruitment process.
Where are all the good people?
There are tried-and-true methods of finding top applicants to apply for your openings. They fall generally into these categories:
- General job boards — Sites such as Monster, Glassdoor and LinkedIn get a lot of traffic, but they can also generate a lot of unqualified applications.
- Specific job boards — Companies that need specialists would be smart to post their job ads on websites specific to their industry.
- Current employee referrals — Soliciting recommendations from members of your staff is a great way to find new applicants.
- Your own network — Reaching out to the contacts you've developed over the course of your career could generate good leads, especially when you're hiring for management positions.
- Recruitment firms — A staffing firm specializing in recruitment can take a lot of the pressure off you and your team to find the right people.
The lowdown on recruitment
Recruiting might seem straightforward, but it can quickly become complicated — especially when you consider the variables unique to each hiring situation. Highly skilled candidates with lots of experience, for example, are often in demand regardless of the economic climate. The unemployment rates for skilled positions are lower than the overall unemployment rate, and often significantly so. This means top candidates are hard to find, and those who are looking for work may find themselves with multiple job offers.
So successful employee recruitment requires more than just placing a job posting on LinkedIn. Finding and hiring the right people for your company requires diligent preparation, thorough execution and a clear understanding of your hiring objectives. If your company doesn't have a dedicated recruiter or HR department, recruitment can be especially tricky. Plus, the recruitment process has changed a lot in the past decade, and your old hiring methods may no longer be as effective as they once were. Follow these steps in your recruitment process to help make the right additions to your team:
- Consider your actual needs. Think about the big picture of your business needs when creating a hiring strategy — what proportions of your team should be full-time, part-time or temporary?
- Promote your opening. Posting the job on employment websites, your company’s own career page and all of the outlets listed in the section above is essential. And don’t forget to advertise the position internally — creating opportunities for advancement helps create a culture of loyalty.
- Judge candidates by the same standard. Determining which people to interview is a different game than selecting which of the applicants is best for the position, but devising a strategy to fairly evaluate all applicants is essential. Eliminate bias from your recruiting by holding all candidates to the same set of standards.
- Conduct interviews with top applicants. The job interview is the most revealing part of the hiring process, and also the trickiest. You have to make every person's interview count, with a set list of thoughtful, standardized questions if you want to compare job candidates properly.
- Don’t take too long to hire. Job seekers, especially top talent, are likely to get frustrated and lose interest in the job — or accept another offer — if the hiring process takes too long. It's a tough balance to strike: Move too fast and you could make a bad hire, but move too slow and you could miss out on a good employee.
- Making the offer. After the interviews, be sure to check job references for your top candidates. Before you make an offer, set a salary range you're willing to work with so you're prepared for any salary negotiation.
Put a staffing agency on the case
Finding a good employee can be a difficult process. Employers often find that a staffing agency makes the recruitment process easier, less stressful and more effective for their companies by providing the following benefits.
- Tighten up your hire time. Robert Half research shows it takes a company five weeks on average to make a staff hire, and 7.5 weeks to fill a management role. Our recruiters are often able to find a good fit within days.
- Spearhead your recruitment strategy. A staffing firm helps you craft a job post that’s more likely to draw the attention of the best applicants.
- Scout the talent. The best staffing agencies have access to a large pool of skilled professionals, including passive job seekers — professionals who are not actively searching for a new position but would be open to changing roles for the right opportunity. Robert Half has departments specializing in staffing for the legal, administrative, financial, management, technology and creative fields.
- Make your workforce agile. A staffing agency can help your business recruit employees for full-time positions, part-time positions and temporary projects — and experienced agents advise on the best mix for your company's specific needs and business cycles.
- Decrease turnover costs. Dealing with a bad hire takes up too much of management's time, especially in a small business. When you engage a staffing agency, you know the talented professionals we connect you with have been evaluated.
- Try out a new person for your team. A temporary assignment with the option to go full time after a certain period is a good method for evaluating a candidate's skills and work ethic before committing to a full-time arrangement.