Given the incredible impact employees have on your organization’s performance and growth, it makes perfect sense for you to want to hire the right candidates every time. After all, hiring the right employees can mean the difference between meeting company goals for growth and falling short.

However, as with many business processes, there’s no singular recruiting action you can take to guarantee success. Instead, you need to take a variety of deliberate steps to source, assess, and screen candidates successfully. Doing so can help you manage hiring risks and avoid hiring decisions with hair-raising results for you, your employees, patients, and customers.

The Importance of Hiring the Right Employees

Identifying and hiring the best candidates is a perennial challenge for just about every organization. Recently, the pandemic has complicated hiring efforts further and made it more challenging to hire for on-site and remote roles. According to an employer survey reported by the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM), HR professionals named recruiting the top workplace challenge for 2021.

Despite the obstacles you must overcome, when you do find hiring success, your organization can potentially realize the following benefits of hiring the right employees:

  • Lower turnover: Individuals hired into roles that fit them best may be less likely to leave for another position.
  • More effective teams: The right addition to a team can help to improve the team’s communication and collaboration with others.
  • Higher engagement: Individuals who are a great fit for their role may be more willing to give their best effort at work.
  • Cost savings: Hiring the right employees can help you avoid costs to replace and re-train, which can often be multiples of a new hire’s salary.

10 Tips for Avoiding Ghoulish Hiring Results

As any HR or recruiting professional knows, success in recruiting isn’t just a matter of sourcing the right people, but also successfully moving them through the selection and screening process. To achieve positive results that won’t send you running away in horror, take the following actions to build a successful hiring and screening process;

1. Clearly articulate what you offer and what you seek in a hire.

It’s easier to identify a candidate’s fit for an open position when you clarify job responsibilities, candidate qualifications, and what the position offers. Therefore, it’s critical to make sure the hiring manager, recruiters, and interviewers are all on the same page regarding what you’re looking for in candidates. 

When you don’t clearly communicate what a position offers and what you expect from the ideal candidate, you can inadvertently create confusion when communicating with candidates, ultimately resulting in an unsuitable hire. It happens more than you might think. A ThriveMap study found that 48 percent of surveyed workers said they left their job because the reality didn’t match their expectations.

2. Use a diverse range of candidate sourcing methods.

In addition to posting open positions in the traditional spots, such as your career page and job boards, you should also leverage social media, diversity and inclusion career sites, and the networks of existing employees. By sourcing a diverse slate of candidates from several sources, you can increase the chances of making diverse hires to reflect a range of experiences, viewpoints, and ideas.

3. Keep candidates engaged with a smooth application process.

A long application process requiring candidates to re-enter a lot of the same information from their resume can be an immediate turn-off. And when open positions are plentiful, a cumbersome application process might just be enough to cause a candidate to forgo applying at all. In an Appcast study, the application completion rate dropped from 12 percent to 4 percent if the application took candidates more than 15 minutes to complete. 

To keep candidates engaged during the application process, use recruiting tools with mobile-friendly applications and an integrated applicant tracking system (ATS). With this technology, you can simplify the application process and keep track of applications and resumes from the moment a candidate applies until they are ready for background screening and hire.

4. Use a variety of assessment methods in addition to interviews.

Just like most trick-or-treaters wear a costume, a candidate may be great at showing you a façade rather than their true selves, including how they might behave on the job. As a result, it often takes more than an interview or two to get to the heart of a candidate’s true capabilities and fit with your organization. 

In addition to one-on-one interviews, try some additional activities to get to know candidates better. For example:

  • Ask candidates to complete a small project so you can see their work.
  • Invite top candidates to share a meal with their prospective team members.
  • Schedule tandem interviews with a wider group of interviewers.

5. Comply with laws affecting the hiring process.

Assessing candidates for fit with your organization can’t come at the expense of compliance with laws affecting the hiring process. To make a great hire, you must also comply with laws such as salary history bans and “ban the box.” Both types of legislation offer guidance about the questions you need to avoid during the interview and background screening process. By following these laws, you can eliminate questions prohibited by state law and avoid unnecessarily ruling out potentially great candidates.

Conducting an audit is the best way to assess your entire background screening  program. Don’t know where to start? We can help>>>

6. Check for employment sanctions and confirm credentials.

Hiring the right employees means avoiding candidates who don’t meet minimum qualifications and those who have been barred from employment in your industry. To help guide these activities, work with your background screening partner to confirm candidate credentials, including professional licenses and education. 

A thorough employment and education verification process can help you avoid hiring candidates with degrees from diploma mills and other fake credentials. In addition, if you hire for a healthcare organization, you’ll also need to screen prospective hires for any healthcare employment sanctions or exclusions.

7. Check references.

Employment references can help you learn more about a candidate’s performance in previous roles, well beyond what the candidate tells you in an interview. But to get real value from conducting references, you should use a standardized process for gathering information and considering it in hiring decisions.

Instead of dedicating precious recruiter and HR time chasing references and waiting for callbacks, trust your screening provider to conduct employment verifications and reference interviews using a standardized and reliable process

8. Conduct a thorough criminal background check.

To make a well-informed hiring decision, you’ll need to conduct a search for any past or ongoing criminal history that might signal a more risky hire. Since there is no one place to obtain all the available criminal background information on a candidate, you’ll need to work with a reputable and knowledgeable screening provider. The right provider has the processes, people, and technology to conduct accurate and comprehensive background check results in a timely fashion.

9. Offer a comprehensive onboarding program.

While the formal hiring process may end once you have an accepted offer, you can further support the success of every hire by offering a positive onboarding experience. With onboarding support to help new hires navigate the teams, processes, and technology within your organization, you can increase the chances of turning a great hire into a amazing, long-tenured employee.

10. Conduct candidate surveys.

To keep hiring the right employees, you’ll need to continuously look for opportunities to build on your success. When you survey candidates to understand which aspects of their experience were positive or could have been improved, you can make improvements along the way and provide an even better experience for future candidates.

Say Goodbye to Hiring Nightmares

The road to hiring the right employees for your organization is filled with many twists and turns, but it doesn’t have a scary journey—and you don’t have to do it alone. By following these tips for attracting, screening, and selecting candidates, you can build a hiring process to prevent hiring nightmares. 

A great place to start is to examine your candidate screening process. For more insights, read our free resource, Guide to Auditing and Improving Your Background Screening Program.

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