Every great business tracks time to hire, but do they really place a significant emphasis on it or use it to drive process and activity? Unfortunately, rarely. Of course it’s a great indicator of how efficient your recruitment process is; however, I’m often amazed at how many hiring managers neglect the following gospel truth -- here it is laid out in simple terms...
“Valuable, in-demand candidates are likely to be off the job market quickly -- seriously quickly.”
To illustrate, 20% of employees are responsible for 80% of workplace results according to the Harvard Business Review. Securing top talent quickly through a productive hiring process pays off.
The Advantages to Quick and Confident Hiring Decisions
Twice last week, I witnessed 3-day hiring processes, crazy fast; interview day 1, referencing day 2, formal offer and acceptance day 3. The roles were management positions! Time is king when hiring. Turning up late to a party isn’t going to put you in good stead. If you want exceptional quality, the elite talent, the game-changers, the crème de le crème, your best chance is being first cab off the rank.
But wait… everyone has been taught to hire slowly and fire fast. It’s a long-standing business mantra bellowed by leaders. I don’t disagree with the mantra; it’s just no longer fit for purpose in the talent-scarce and skills-short landscape we’re all fighting our talent wars in.
Let me set the record straight. Any recruiting leaders or hiring managers who think top candidates will wait for them to make a hiring decision are either deluded or outright ignorant -- candidates wait for no one. (I can hear feathers rustling from here.) "But they will wait for us because our culture is great!" I hear you say, or, "We have the best benefits or career prospects." No, no they won’t. The gravitas for a candidate of having an offer in hand is always too much for them to resist (even if it’s not their 1st choice). Average time to hire is 34 days, but here’s the kicker…
“The best candidates are off the market in 10 days.”
In summary, taking time to make a hiring decision doesn't improve the quality of your hires -- the quality may actually be reduced. Neither does forcing a quick hiring decision, so finding a balance is crucial.
How to Hire Great Candidates Quickly
When a top performer is identified, you must act quickly. Here are some helpful top tips to give you a competitive advantage:
- Calculate what ROI a top performer could bring to your business. A better hire normally correlates to better business performance. Can you afford not to hire the best? Top performers are extraordinarily valuable. Research shows top performers routinely produce 5 to 10 times more than the average employee.
- Identify reasons why top performers drop out of your hiring processes. This feedback and intel is vital for continuous improvement.
- Understand your employer brand. This is crucial to convey during the hiring process, but remember that irrespective of how strong it is, it will rarely outweigh an offer in hand.
- Create systems and processes that are capable of identifying and tracking extremely high-potential applicants. This ensures they can receive a special focus. This is neither complex or expensive.
- Remember, the candidate experience during the hiring process is crucial. Fast hiring decisions impress top candidates. They view their recruiting process experience as an indicator of how the business operates and functions.
- Cut red tape. Any organisation can over-engineer what should be a simple process. Don’t skip any hiring processes. Just carry them out concurrently as you make your decision or more quickly.
- Remove hurdles before you go to market. Don’t start the process knowing a key decision maker is about to go on 4 weeks leave (more common than you think!). Or if you have a lengthy approval process, get approval upfront and save the time and stress further down the line. Streamline your process and actually set yourself up for success.
- Consider the benefit of being first out of the gate This might save your business money by stopping bidding wars with multiple-offer scenarios.
- Leverage tech. For example, use video or Skype to arrange initial interviews, or fast turnaround referencing tools, anything that streamlines your end-to-end recruitment.
Keep these best practices in mind as you're considering candidates. Remember they're vetting you as much as you are them.
The right people power will make or break your business success. At BENCHMARQUE, we know how vital perfect timing is in hiring. We enable our clients to increase quality of hire whilst reducing time to hire, as well as give them freedom to concentrate on growth, revenue and customer satisfaction, rather than recruitment or people management.
With 22 years of experience and over 23,000 professional hours working across Sydney’s hospitality industry, our content aims to inspire young candidates to pursue professional careers and to help operators grow compliantly.