Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Are you sure you're recruiting the right people?

You have an application process, maybe even a personality test, and a recruiting professional who screens candidates before they get to the interview stage. Your employee retention is okay, and productivity is average for your industry. You may have good people for each role, but are you sure you have the right people? The best people?

Finding the right employees can be more difficult than you might think. The right employee for your company might not be the right employee for your competitors and vice versa. Rather than relying on a strict set of guidelines, use the following questions to determine if a candidate is ideal for your company.

Who do you want to attract?

While you might want to attract people with sales skills or design experience, figuring out who fits with your team is a greater challenge, yet the more important one. Learning to ask the right kind of questions is key to determining who the right people are for your environment. Does the candidate seem bitter about their last job? Do they claim they prefer to work independently rather than as a team? That might not be an automatic disqualification, depending on the role and the company, but it will certainly tell you more about the person you're thinking of hiring.

Who do you want to attract?

It might be tempting to post job listings on your own website and call it a day, but that won't get your noticed by the best candidates. Craigslist might be great for finding a band to perform at your party, but may not be the best tool for long-term recruiting strategy. In addition to major job sites like Indeed or LinkedIn, consider branching out to other social media platforms. You may also want to use targeted sites, like HigherEdJobs or Idealist, that attract candidates in your industry. If you're really seriously about targeting the right candidates you'll want to go with an external recruiter -- preferably one who has developed many relationships with potential job seekers. The best recruiters have top performing, specialized individuals in their databases. These people are likely to already have a job and may not be actively looking for a new one, but would leave for the right opportunity.

What is the candidate's potential?

It might be easy to find the person with the best skillset to fit the position, but does that always translate to the best fit? Many skills can be taught and experience can be gained by anyone. What matters are things like personality traits, like emotional intelligence and empathy, and innate skills, like interpersonal communication and time management. While not all employees will be outgoing, a candidate should be well-prepared to answer interview questions, ask follow up questions, and elaborate on discussion topics. If the potential employee seems quick to learn or has a passion for your industry, even better!

Does the candidate find your company desirable?

Aside from parsing the candidate's interests via interview questions, you should also let the candidate ask as many questions as he or she needs to get a good feel for the company. Great companies remember that potential hires are also interviewing you. They need to get a good enough feel for the company to determine that they want to work there - and that they will be a good fit. Be open about your business's culture and expectations. Be honest, as well. You not going to do yourself or the candidate any favors by making false promises or stretching the truth about work hours, benefits, or culture.

Can you create the job around the employee?

You never know - you might end up filling a niche you didn't think you needed. If a candidate blows you away in the interview process, but his or her skills and experience don't quite fit the mold of the jobs you're searching for, don't worry about it! You can make up a new job description together. As long as you have the money for expansion, you might as well take a chance on someone who seems bound to be a rockstar on the job.

It's important to remember when hiring to think outside the box. A candidate may not look the part. She might not fit the demographics of your current team. Maybe he won't work out. In the end, without taking a chance on those with potential, you might miss out on moving your team from mediocre and safe to amazing and innovative.

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