Improving the Hiring Process
Want to Hire Great Employees? Improve Your Hiring Process
Does anyone really enjoy looking for a new job? Even if you’re completely miserable in your current position, the idea of developing a resume, looking for open positions, answering the same “Where do you want to be in five years?” question again and again, and never hearing another peep from a potential employer after you’ve submitted your credentials is simply exhausting. In fact, many people would list job hunting with going to the dentist, moving, and renewing their driver’s license on the list of “most dreaded” tasks.
While certain parts of the job hunting process will never go away — the competition, the waiting, the uncomfortable interviews — some aspects of job hunting don’t have to be so miserable. As an employer, you have the power to change the process so that it can actually be somewhat enjoyable, or at least not frustrating and discouraging. In fact, if you make the hiring process friendlier to jobseekers, they will most likely be among your happiest employees and your greatest resource when it comes to recruiting even more excellent employees.
So what are some of the ways that employers can improve their hiring processes? Try these tips.
1. Make Online Applications Shorter and Easier
Job applicants often feel frustrated when they need to re-enter information into an online system that is already present on their resume, or they have to answer an endless battery of questions that don’t appear to have anything to do with the job they are applying for. They are also turned off when the system isn’t user-friendly, especially for mobile device users.
Employers can help streamline the process by regularly reviewing their applicant tracking systems and using analytics to determine which areas are slowing down or driving away applicants. It’s also important to remember that the purpose of an application is to determine which candidates should get an interview. You don’t need to collect all of the information about a candidate upfront; you can fill in the gaps later.
2. The Hiring Process Takes Too Long
Because the job market is still relatively tight, many employers believe that they can hold out for the “perfect” candidate before filling an open position. In some cases, companies will interview a candidate as many as five or six times before making a decision. However, most people do not want to wait weeks or even months, and jump through seemingly endless hoops, in order to land a job.
While you do not want to cut corners and hire someone just for the sake of filling the position, taking too long to meet and evaluate candidates can turn some qualified individuals off, and spur them to seek other opportunities. Spend some time evaluating your hiring process to identify any inefficiencies or bottlenecks, and make changes to streamline the process.
Many employers take a dominant position when it comes to hiring new employees. They believe that they hold all the cards, forgetting that the applicant is evaluating them too, to determine whether they want to work for the company. For that reason, it’s important to be forthcoming with information about not only the hiring process (i.e., how many interview rounds they can expect) but also the job description and expectations, the salary range and benefits, and other important details. When the hiring process is a two-way street, everyone feels more comfortable and confident, and able to make decisions that are more informed.
4. Vague or Inaccurate Job Descriptions
Little is more discouraging to a job applicant than getting to the interview only to discover that the job they applied for isn’t exactly the job they are interviewing for, due to outdated HR information, miscommunication from between HR and management, or other issues. It’s important to triple-check job descriptions before they are posted, to ensure that the information is accurate and up-to-date.
5. Lack of Communication
By far the most common complaint among job seekers is the tendency of employers to skimp on communication. While you might argue that the number of applications that are submitted for each open position make personal contact with each applicant impractical, it doesn’t take very long to notify a candidate that their application has been received, or that they are no longer being considered for a position.
A candidate tracking system can take care of some of those tasks, especially if candidates can log in and check their status themselves. However, it’s important to personally contact the candidates that you interview but do not select. Doing so maintains goodwill and your company’s reputation.
Chances are your company has a hiring process in place that works for you. However, when you show applicants that you respect them and value their time, you demonstrate your company’s values — in fact, 70 percent of job seekers believe that the hiring process is an indicator of what it’s like to work for a company. It’s always smart to evaluate your process to ensure that you’re getting the best-qualified applicants and keeping them engaged and satisfied throughout the hiring process.