Six Mistakes Companies Make When Hiring—And What To Do Instead

By Jennifer Barnes, CEO of optimal office, a company that provides fractional CFOs, COOs, Controllers and HR professionals for businesses.

Even the most successful business ventures don’t always do well when they’re hiring new talent. Since so much money must be invested in hiring new employees, the hiring process, and onboarding those new hires, you need to make sure you don’t make costly mistakes. Below are some of the most common mistakes I’ve seen companies make during the hiring process and ways to avoid them.

Hiring a person to fill various functions

Companies can make the mistake of hiring a single person to perform too many job functions, many of which are not in their skill set. If you have multiple roles that don’t require a full-time position, consider outsourcing the work. For example, if you are hiring an accountant but are also asking them to do controller work, you might consider outsourcing these roles. The same goes for hiring an entry-level IT person and relying on them to perform cybersecurity tasks. This causes them to fail and could hurt your business.

Speed ​​up the recruitment process

Often, when a key employee leaves the company, planned recruitment protocols can be compromised in an effort to fill the vacancy as quickly as possible. Whenever someone vital to the company leaves, their workload falls on the remaining employees, who are then overworked until a new person has been hired. There may also be a decrease in overall productivity because things don’t work as well with a key person gone. This sometimes causes hiring managers to overlook red flags or completely ignore some important components of the hiring process.

Even if it is causing some difficulty or inconvenience to your staff members, you must follow your company’s established routines and protocols to find the right new hire. It will probably take more time to do a thorough job, but in the end, you’ll have a much better chance of finding someone who is a perfect fit for your company culture and has all the skills and talent needed to succeed in your work placement. .

Creating vague job descriptions

Anytime you don’t clearly specify what the job duties and responsibilities are for a position, it can lead to misunderstandings, disappointed new hires, and unrealistic expectations for everyone involved. If you don’t accurately describe the duties of the position, you may mislead candidates and cost your business time and money. You may also be attracting candidates who don’t have the necessary skills to do the job you have in mind. At the very least, this will block the recruiting and hiring process, because you’ll have to weed out those who don’t have the necessary skills. This can extend the amount of time your current employees have to cover the workload of a missing person.

Be sure to write a complete and accurate job description so that all potential candidates understand what skills and knowledge will be required. Be specific about the responsibilities you’ll need to meet with a new hire. It’s a good idea to include the soft skills a candidate will need in this job, such as leadership or communication styles. Talking about your culture and how the person might best fit into the company can also help you attract the right person.

Unable to check references

This can be a big mistake because checking references allows you to find out how a candidate performed in other similar positions. Of course, most candidates will provide references that are favorable to them, but once you start talking to a former supervisor or colleague, you can usually find important information about a person’s work habits, personality, and ability. to work with colleagues. Be specific with the candidate about who at which company you want to talk to if the candidate is applying for an executive leadership position. You don’t necessarily want to only talk to the references that are provided to you initially.

Consider reference checks a critical component of the hiring process. Please take the time to contact each of the references provided and ask the questions that are most important to your organization. For example, if teamwork is vital to the open position, ask questions about the candidate’s ability to work well with others and perform the required tasks.

Narrowing the scope of your search

You get the most diverse pool of candidates by doing a broad search, whereas a narrow search will limit the number of good candidates that apply. When you have an important position to fill, you should use several avenues to advertise the opening. Use job listings, agencies, and any other approach that helps you spread the word about an open position. Don’t overlook the possibility of finding the right candidate internally, but set your search as broad as possible so you have the best chance of finding a candidate who adds diversity as well as the right attitude and skill set.

Not involving the whole team

There’s a good reason to involve team members in the hiring process, not just executives. They are the ones who carry out the day-to-day activities and often know best what a colleague will need to succeed. They may be aware of some subtle skills or talents that someone will need on the job.

Solicit multiple team members that any new hire would work with. They may have some valuable insights into a candidate’s ability to fit in with the company culture and other staff members. During interviews, they can also get a good idea of ​​the type of person applying for the job. This will give you a better chance of choosing the right person for the job and finding someone who can be successful in your organization for many years to come.

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When it comes to hiring, mistakes can often be costly. From costs incurred from recruiting, onboarding, and training to the wasted time associated with unfulfilled positions, hiring mistakes can be damaging to businesses both small and large. For companies dedicated to choosing the right hires for their business, understanding and avoiding the common mistakes made when hiring is paramount.

At Ikaroa, we have seen firsthand the consequences of misjudging a candidate or not taking enough time to source the perfect fit. Here are six common hiring mistakes companies make and how to avoid them:

1. Not aligning candidates with the company vision. It is important to ensure that all new hires fit not only the skills and experience needed, but also the mission, vision, and culture of the business. This helps to ensure that all new hires are committed to your cause and represent the values of your company.

2. Not considering internal candidates. Companies should consider their current employees for potential openings, particularly when an internal candidate has the potential for growth and development within the company. Promoting from within can help build loyalty and commitment from existing employees, as well as eliminate the need for extra training.

3. Not having a great recruitment process. A comprehensive and efficient recruitment process is necessary for any business looking to hire the best candidates. Companies should focus on streamlining the recruitment process and utilising technology where necessary.

4. Not having a strong onboarding process. Onboarding is an incredibly important part of the hiring process, and having a strong onboarding process ensures that new hires feel welcomed and supported. From dedicated onboarding resources to regular check-ins and induction, it is important to ensure that new employees are made to feel welcomed.

5. Hiring in haste. With the pressure to fill an open position, some companies make the mistake of hiring in haste. The time pressure can lead to poor decision-making and false assumptions. We recommend that companies take their time to find a candidate who matches the mission and values of the business while also having the required skills and experience.

6. Not assessing culture fit. The final, and most important, mistake companies make when hiring is not assessing a candidate’s culture fit. At Ikaroa, we strongly advise our clients to assess candidates for cultural fit by paying attention to indicators like attitude, communication style, and lifestyle choices.

Navigating the hiring process can be a daunting task and, if done wrong, can lead to serious consequences for businesses. Taking the time to assess potential mistakes and putting processes in place to help avoid them is critical for companies looking to find the best hire for the job. With these six common mistakes in mind, businesses can focus on setting up the perfect recruitment process and finding the perfect match for their company.


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