Your Company’s Success Part II: Quality over Quantity

In our last blog we outlined the important parts of a job description and how to set up a marketable sales pitch that describes critical performance objectives rather than a laundry list of skills.  This approach will help attract the right candidates from the start allowing you to spend more quality time with fewer, better qualified candidates.

Advancing technologies allow us to be more informed buyers with access to incredible amounts of information that help compare products, gather research, and read reviews before making a purchase.  This process works great when we are purchasing  consumer goods, but when recruiting for key positions, this mass shopping approach does not produce the best candidate.  And yet, the traditional hiring approach looks a lot like that – a position opens, we post a skills checklist job online that is overladen with an abundance of requirements and wait for an average of 250 applicants and then begin our highly transactional process that involves box checking, and comparative shopping for the best candidate in that pool.  An average of 1 hour is spent with the top 4 or 5 candidates and the best from that pool is selected and offered the job. This process of weeding out unqualified candidates is fundamentally different from one that is designed to attract top performers that aren’t looking for a job.

With a “less is more” and white glove approach, the recruiting process is redesigned to attract the right candidates to the job allowing more quality time with a fewer number of highly qualified candidates. This red carpet treatment  leads to a  top notch candidate experience that provides  a deeper insight into what it is like to work for your organization. Although this process requires significant reengineering efforts, it leads to better results and hiring of top performers.  Your hiring manager  will spend more time with  the right candidates,  digging deep into their motivations and accomplishments to assess if they can achieve the goals outlined by the company.  Your job should be marketed directly to a hand selected short list of prospects that have achieved success in their roles and will view this as a likely next step in their career progression.  During this process, the key goals and objectives of the position are clearly communicated to the candidates so that they see this as an opportunity on their career trajectory. This requires extra time investment and a fully engaged hiring manager. This is a more methodical, high-touch, relationship intensive process that cannot be achieved in a 1-hour visit but is more effective  than reviewing hundreds of resumes hoping to make one decent hire.

It’s crucial to make the switch to a recruiting process that is designed to attract the best, especially in a market where there is a scarcity of talent.  The previous approach to recruiting may have worked when there was a surplus of talent, but it is ineffective when the surplus doesn’t exist.  To be successful, your recruiting process needs to include proactive recruiting where you keep the top talent engaged with your brand even when you don’t have an opening. When a position does open, a well written job description marketed to select candidates with a hard to resist employee value proposition will showcase the job as a true career advancement opportunity and pique their interest in the role. This type of outreach followed by a high touch, in depth interview process with a fully engaged hiring manager will increase your quality of hire and reduce turnover.

The new, redesigned approach takes more effort but hiring the best in the market instead of the best person that applied, is worth the effort.