Gone are the days when a ‘help wanted’ sign in the window was all you needed to find a great employee. On average, companies with 100 employees are employing 1.4 HR staff (a ratio of 1.4:100), an all-time high. But what about companies without a dedicated HR person to implement a hiring process?
While a hiring process does not need to be complex, having a clear set of steps and tools can simplify hiring for small businesses and ensure compliance with regulations. It also shows a prospective employee that you are a good company that values their time.
Think about the overall hiring process in three phases, each with its specific focus:
- Needs Assessment Phase
- Recruitment Process Phase, and
- Hiring and Onboarding Phase
Needs Assessment Phase
Whether the position is new, newly vacated, or a succession plan scenario – recruiting the right individual hinges on knowing what you need.
Start with identifying the position vacancies you have (or anticipate) and analyze the job specifications including knowledge, skills, and experience you need for the role.
Before finalizing this shopping list, determine:
- Is there a specific ability or skill that is missing in your current team that this position could add? Is there a task overlooked? Would position realignment increase productivity?
- If a new position, look at the current team’s input versus output. How will this position affect the overall team’s output?
Once you know what you need, prepare a comprehensive job description. While some tasks can be described very generically, if there are duties that are unique to your organization, make sure you document them. Clearly identify the minimum qualifications and experience required for someone to be successful.
Note: a higher education requirement adds higher remuneration expectations by the applicant.
Recruitment Process Phase
Once the job description is finalized, compose a Job Posting that highlights the key features of the position. These are two different documents!
Selling your company is as important as documenting the role – a job posting is a sales document not a repeat of the job description. Think of it as ‘click-bait’. Write it in a personal, conversational tone – use keywords, define key duties, and details that a career-seeker would want to know. You want the applicant to understand the job and to apply if they feel it is a role in which they could be successful.
Determining the recruitment team involved in the process is crucial to maintain streamlined productivity and to choose the best ‘fit’ candidate for the position. Ensure everyone involved can clearly articulate the job and define the qualities sought – not just the knowledge, skills, and abilities but the personality ‘type’ that fits.
Your recruitment process, though it may vary, should include a consistent set of steps including:
- Talent Search
- Screening and Shortlisting
- Evaluation, Reference Checks, and Background Checks
Identifying the right talent and compelling the qualified to apply are the most important aspects of this recruitment phase. Share the job posting internally and externally.
- One of the key things’ individuals seek is a company in which there is the potential for upward career progression. Always looking internally to fill a role motivates employees to perform better (and it reduces the attrition rate).
- Before advertising externally, consider reviewing applicants on file who have previously applied and did not make the cut the first time – perhaps this role is a better fit?
- Job Portals
- Company Career Site
- Social Networking Platforms
- Recruitment Firm
- Job Fairs
- Campus Placements
- Association listings
- Industry publications
Screening and Shortlisting
This is often the most arduous task of the recruitment process – reviewing resumes. Fortunately, you can make this complicated, time-consuming task easier with an applicant tracking system like Prevue APS Pro. It creates the applicant database that links with your company career site’s APPLY button. A tool like APS Pro allows you to quickly screen applications based on minimum qualification, sort resumes, use questionnaires, and flag those for additional review. It ensures an unbiased, objective filter to narrow down your applicant pool quickly. It is also a great filing system to review previous applicants.
Now that you have a shortlist of applicants, those with hiring potential move to the interview process – either a phone, video, or face-to-face interaction. Ensure you keep the questions consistent throughout the process to ensure you evaluate each candidate equally and fairly.
To keep candidate engagement, it is recommended to keep the time between initial connection, interview, and subsequent interviews as short as possible – a good candidate is likely actively interviewing elsewhere.
Evaluation, Reference Checks, and Background Checks
Part of the evaluation process should include Psychometric Testing (like Prevue). This is a crucial step to know if your candidate has the potential for success in the role. Selecting a proven and reliable assessment adds objectivity to the subjective interviewing process and assists with evaluating job-fit.
Some companies elect for applicants to complete an assessment before interviewing, some incorporate it into the final process. Either way, it is an unbiased addition to the decision-making process. Assessments show how the candidate compares to the pre-determined personality profile, behaviours, flexibility, aptitude, creativity, communication, and problem-solving skills that are required to perform. It is recommended the assessment results be only 1/3 of the decision-making process.
Once the final selection for a position is done, make sure you make it a priority to check the candidate’s professional references and verify their employment details and experience in a timely way. We suggest a set of questions be developed that are followed to ensure compliance with employment standards and legislation. Positions that involve the finances of a company generally include criminal and credit checks as well.
Hiring and Onboarding Phase
Once a decision is made, though you may want to verbalize your offer to be more personal, ensure you follow up with an offer letter that supports your verbal offer as they may want to discuss the details with their significant other. Include everything the candidate will want to know to make their decision. Include the start date and time, where they go on the first day, the conditions of employment, the work hours, the remuneration, etc. Avoid ambiguity – be detailed and clear.
Did they accept it? Great! But the process does not end with the acceptance. Put extra effort into making sure the days leading up to their start date, and the first week, enforce that they made the right decision in joining you.
Some onboarding tips include:
- Have them complete the pre-hire paperwork online before they start (See Onboarding)
- Have their desk ready, emails set up, and business cards waiting
- Pre-arrange a team lunch for the team to get to know them (without discussing work) and send them the invitation to join before they start
As mentioned, a hiring process does not need to be complex, but it does need to be consistent to ensure compliance with regulations. At SmartHire we can help you to define a clear set of steps and provide the tools to simplify hiring.
Call us today for a Needs Assessment!