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Hiring Tips: Ways to Avoid Hiring Roulette

Hiring TipsWell here we are…right where we knew the economy was headed. Northern Nevada is experiencing exciting and beneficial growth in our region as all the hard work and promises are coming to fruition.

An unfortunate side effect of this growth is a tight employment market—which, in turn, is making it extremely challenging for employers to find good quality candidates. Retaining good employees is another growing challenge. [See Employee Retention a Concern for Nevada Business.]

How businesses—especially existing small businesses—approach hiring is an important aspect of successfully riding the wave of this growth.

Since small businesses often operate in a lean manner, the bandwidth to apply resources to recruitment of new hires is lacking. This can result in rushing and quick decisions, which will come back to bite if an employee is hired without a thorough process.

Use the following hiring tips to ensure you make the most informed decision possible when you offer a candidate the job:

Create a job description. Clarify what you need in the job and focus on the “must-haves.” Then use this document to show your candidate what is expected when they come to work at the company. Matched expectations are crucial in making sound hiring decisions for the employer and the employee.

Write a job ad, not a job description. When posting a job opening, write an ad that reflects the vibe of your company and entices candidates. An ad is the first step to take in selling the job to potential candidates—so use it to its full potential. Avoid dully listing all the required qualifications or cutting and pasting the job description. Write the ad like you would write an ad for your products or services. Make it appealing. List benefits. Catch the eye and convince people to apply.

Prepare interview questions. Avoid laid-back conversations during your interview process. Rather, focus on discovering whether or not the candidate is a good fit for the job by asking specific questions about past experience and behaviors.

Be thorough. Avoid rushing through the interview process. Ask the candidate to come back for subsequent interviews with different employees throughout your organization. Ask employees with peer positions to interview candidates because they will work with the new employee—and it is important they all can gel. Gather information about the candidate’s interactions with everyone they encountered. Use testing to assess skills and character. Listen to your gut. Avoid rushed decisions—those usually result in problematic hires.

This article first appeared in the Reno Gazette Journal on November 29, 2016.

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