Need to speed up hiring? (without sacrificing quality)

Need to speed up hiring? (without sacrificing quality)

Hiring is an essential process for any organisation, but sometimes it can be long, drawn-out and can seem to go on forever. This means you may miss out on the best talent, put additional pressure on existing teams, delay deadlines and compromise quality.

We look at how to compress your hiring process, without compromising quality.

Agree what (who) you want beforehand with everybody involved

There is nothing more frustrating than when you have progressed along the hiring process with a great candidate, only to find that somebody who has not been involved raises questions about the reason for the hire or the requirements for the role at the last minute.

To avoid this, ensure that all stakeholders have been made aware and are in support of the new hire. This is especially important in departments that the role will interface with and also senior stakeholders that will be involved in budget sign-off.

Define and optimise the process

Get the relevant parties together to discuss ways of improving the process in terms of speed. If you have a two or three-stage interview process, can you look at reducing the gap between the first and second-stage interviews? Can the first stage be carried out remotely meaning less notice is required? Can stages be combined?

Often if there is a third or final stage where there are other people to meet, instead of making that stage on a different day, could it be pre-booked on the same day as the second stage? Be upfront with the candidate and advise of the caveat that if it doesn't go well they might be excluded from the process, they will rarely mind.

Create and publish a timeline for the steps involved so everyone (including the candidates) will have forewarning, so reducing lead times and increasing availability.

Look internally

Have you looked internally? You may have the perfect candidate already within your organisation which is often a much quicker route than looking externally. Hiring internally also can reduce the risk of hiring as the individual will inevitably be a known quantity.

Use technology and pre-screening

We have mentioned conducting parts of the process virtually and Zoom and Teams calls are now commonplace so should be maximised to save time. Technical and psychometric pre-screening testing is available online and can provide great insights to eliminate or ‘qualify-in’ candidates in an efficient manner.

Pre-schedule stakeholders' availability

It is unlikely that individuals (especially senior ones) will be available to meet candidates ‘on the day’ ie without notice. Pre-define the process, who they will need to meet and pre-book time with them in advance. Often the challenge is to get people's time in the diary and availability.

Look for certain days of the week and times of the day when they can join those team's calls together (face to face or remotely)

Prepare questions in advance

It may be tempting to ask questions ‘on the fly’ and even if you are experienced in interviewing, it really is worth preparing key questions related to the role and person in advance. Not only will you save time, but it will provide consistency for the process and certainly improve the quality of your hire.

Have offer amounts and limits pre-agreed and budgeted

Another frustration can be delays in making an offer because the salary amount and limits have not been pre-agreed and ready to go. Don't forget you may need to think about the package as a whole including bonuses and other benefits.

A counter offer may also be needed and pre-agreed to secure the best candidates. Worse than this, ensure the budget for the role has also been agreed upon from the outset!

Utilise a 3rd party specialist

Using a specialist hiring business can not only save time but if you do not have the skills and network of candidates available internally, can significantly improve the quality of the hire as well.