A clear and thorough hiring process is critical to landing the right new employees. Your employee hiring process should be methodical and well thought out.
The first step is preparing for the process by researching market hiring conditions and getting all of the proper paperwork in order. Once you start the process, you need to consider the exact role you are hiring for and how much you are willing to negotiate once you make an offer.
This article is for businesses that are looking to hire new employees and want a complete guide on the steps of a successful hiring process. It probably won’t come as a surprise to hear this, but businesses don’t run too well without employees. That’s why the employee hiring process is such a lengthy and detailed one. If you do it right, you’ll find and hire high-quality candidates who stick around and represent your business the way you would.
As a small business owner, you might not know quite where to begin with hiring if you don’t have experience in HR, as many small business owners don’t. Keep reading for advice from experts on hiring employees.
- Evaluate what positions you need to fill.
Sonya Schwartz, founder of Her Norm, said this step is important to prevent redundancy of positions in the company.
“The best thing you can do is approach the process with the mindset of filling needs, not desks,” added Deosingh. “You are looking for the best person to fill a specific need, not just getting someone in and calling it a day.”
- Figure out your recruiting strategy.
You always have options when it comes to recruiting. Dailly suggests first figuring out whether you are going to use a recruiting firm. “If not, state on job recruitment forms ‘no agencies, please,’ as this will save a ton of incoming sales calls.”
It can also be beneficial to have your current employees tap into their networks.
“Ask the help of the current employees to spread the news,” Schwartz said. “The more applicants to choose from, the better.”
While the hiring process can be a lengthy one, you still want to make sure you find the right candidate for specific job you are hiring for. That doesn’t always mean the best candidate overall.
“Recruiters and hiring managers should take their time to find the best candidate for the role and not settle for the best candidate in the applicant pool,” said Lori Rassas, HR consultant, executive coach and author of The Perpetual Paycheck. “If you interview 10 candidates and none are a fit to their role, there will likely be pressure to just pick the best candidate. Hiring managers should resist this pressure and go back to the hiring pool to secure other candidates.”
Where to post your job
Most businesses use online career websites to advertise a new job opening. You could first start listing on your company website to reach a targeted audience. If you want to widen your reach, turn to free and paid online career classified. Here are some job posting sites to consider:
Careerbuilder: Established more than two decades ago, Careerbuilder provides resources for employees and employers, including localized search capacity. The site advertises to more than 80 million jobseekers around the globe using its database to search for positions. The posting price is low and is based on the number of positions you are hiring for your company.
Monster: On Monster, job seekers can search by location, skillset, keywords and job title. The company recently added new features to make classifieds stand out, like video. Pricing varies based on hiring need and company size.
ZipRecruiter: On ZipRecruiter, you can create a hiring account for free. ZipRecruiter has innovative matching tools to help you find the right talent for your job posting. All communications are managed on the platform.
LinkedIn: LinkedIn has various channels that can be used for recruiting. LinkedIn has a huge candidate base with more than 690 million users. Job postings are free, but it charges you to use more comprehensive recruiting tools.
Avoid unregulated websites like Craigslist since you may only receive spam emails and calls instead of high-quality job seekers.
- Write the job description.
Before posting a job listing, you need to confer with your team managers about the ideal candidate for the job so you can get a good idea of what exactly is needed, according to Walden. It’s also good practice to make existing employees aware of the opening.
It then comes down to what exactly the role is.
“The hiring process begins with assessing what tasks will be involved with the role and building out a relevant job description based on the skills needed to complete those,” said Jesse Silkoff, co-founder and president of MyRoofingPal.
Ethan Taub, CEO of Loanry, said to make sure the role listing is exactly matched to what you need. People like to follow specific role types, so make sure that your description is specific to the kind of person you are looking for.
Dailly said that you should also ascertain the salary so you can state it in the job description and not recruit under- or overqualified candidates.
“In some situations, hiring managers are less than upfront about exactly what challenges the candidate will face, and this leads to mistrust, high turnover and an overall negative impact on workplace culture,” said Rassas. “But that can be prevented by being explicit with what is expected of the person filling the role and making sure the candidates you’ve chosen can fulfill it.”
- Post job listings and sift through applicants.
The next step after writing a proper job description is to get it out there on various job boards.
“When we select and hire our employees, we start with a job posting,” Walden said. “We’ll usually advertise this to target specific groups for certain skill sets. Applications are sent in, and we look through resumes first to immediately rule out anyone who’s just completely unqualified or not what we’re looking for. If we’re on the fence, we read cover letters and narrow down the pool.”
If you can’t find the right candidate for your job opening from the current applicant pool, you may need to revisit your job description.
“If you are not seeing the right type of candidate, pivot so you do see the best candidates,” Rassas said. “Yes, work is probably piling up, and yes, you want to get a candidate in the role right away, but a bit more effort on the hiring process before extending the offer is going to save you a lot of time in the long run.”
- Interview the most qualified candidates.
Before interviewing the candidates, give them enough notice to make sure you get the best out of them.
“Inform the applicant about the interview ahead of time so he/she could prepare more,” Schwartz said. “This will allow you to know the applicant better and to know if they are a perfect fit for the role because you have given them the time to prepare.”
Walden said the first round of interviews at WikiLawn comes after they narrow down the applicant pool even further, and then they follow up with a second round of interviews.
“Whether it is in person or virtual, [the interview] remains the most important part of the hiring journey,” said Deosingh. “It is when you get to ask the necessary questions and ideally form a bond with the candidate.”
- Follow up with the interviewees.
This stage isn’t just for calling the applicant or sending an email. Deosingh said post-interview evaluation is also important.
“Don’t fall victim to the halo effect and be blinded by any potential weaknesses,” he said. “Maintain perspective and take everything into account – not just the interview or resume but the totality of what you’ve seen. Get input from others, but limit it to a small group to avoid brain drain.”
Follow-up can take many forms. It might be as simple as a thank-you note for the interviewee’s time, all the way up to a formal job offer.
- Extend the job offer.
If you’ve interviewed a lot of people and found high-quality candidates for the position, you want to move quickly.
“Don’t delay in making a decision,” said Deosingh. “Make sure all the stakeholders (if applicable) are available to interview and give feedback in a timely fashion. The demand for skilled employees is still high, and you can lose a potential hire to other opportunities if you delay.”
The exact offer you extend also matters.
“Make sure to give an irresistible job offer,” Schwartz said. “Most high-quality employees demand higher pay and good benefits.”
Regardless of how good you think the offer is, prepare for a bit of negotiation on salary and employee benefits.
“Allow the potential employee to think about your offer, and if he/she doesn’t agree, try to negotiate,” Schwartz said. “Negotiation should always be a win-win situation.”
- Conduct a background check.
A final step you should consider is to conduct a background check to ensure there are no significant red flags before bringing the person into your workplace.
“If you think the prospective applicant suits the position you require, you can do a background check,” Schwartz said. “This will confirm the decision you made.”