Recruiters in the industry often talk about “source of hire.” We’re always looking for new sources, methods or people who can generate more candidates for the jobs we’re trying to fill.
But the source of potential candidates only scratches the surface; building a world-class recruiting team is just as important as finding those world-class candidates. The better your recruiting skills, the more quickly and efficiently you can hire.
In today’s uber-competitive talent market, you might not be able to simply find more people. Instead, you should find better ways to convert the candidates you already have into hires. Hiring people is an expensive and time-consuming process, so efficiency matters.
Use the following tips to improve how your recruiting team vets candidates:
1. Before starting your search, agree on the candidate profile
One of the most common mistakes recruiters make is starting the search without getting consensus on the ideal candidate. To recruit efficiently, the entire team needs to know the profile of what type of person would be the best fit.
How many years of experience and what skill set are required? What type of person fits best with your organization’s culture? Answer these questions first and make sure everyone is on the same page. Then, it’s off to the races to evaluate candidates as quickly as you can!
2. Train your interviewers to improve their skills
Everyone thinks their interview skills are top-notch. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. The good news is, anyone can learn to improve how they conduct an interview.
Make it your mission to train your recruiters on how to interview better. They need to be able to evaluate both a candidate’s talent and how well they will fit your organization.
3. Ask better interview questions
Gone are the day of silly interview questions and brain teasers. Every minute of an interview counts, so being prepared with a list of quality questions that will truly reveal the candidate’s potential is essential.
Help your organization develop a database of great questions. The better the questions you ask, the better you’ll understand a candidate’s skill set and be able to determine how well they can do the job.
4. Don’t skip the phone screen
Phone screens are tough, so many people wimp out and bring the candidate onsite.
Bad idea. Part of training your team is encouraging them to screen out candidates who don’t fit the role or the culture. It’s important to do this before you invest more time with in-person interviews.
5. Document interview feedback
If you’re not documenting interview feedback, then you’re hiring by the seat of your pants—and asking for trouble. Ask your team to recap the interview and put their feedback for each candidate on paper. Use that feedback to make the yes/no hiring decision.
The secondary benefit to this is that interviewers have to put their thoughts in writing and defend their opinion of each candidate.
6. Give feedback on feedback
This is probably the hardest thing for a recruiter to do, but it’s the most critical. When someone does a great job interviewing or asks a great question, congratulate them. And when someone is uncalibrated or asking crazy questions, you’ve got to give them feedback on that, too.
Honesty and upfront feedback to your interviewers will help them improve and will make your hiring processes more efficient.
So make sure your team has the skills and confidence to do their jobs well, and you’ll find your recruiting efforts to be more successful.
Jeff Moore has almost 20 years of recruiting experience in the greater Boston area, but is relocating to the Silicon Valley for a new adventure. You can find more information on his blog, www.jeffreytmoore.com, or via Twitter @JeffreyTMoore.