By Contributing Author
Studies show that 95% of employers admit to making hiring mistakes at least once per year.
Unfortunately, recruiting new employees is tricky. Finding the right candidate can take time, and multiple steps are required before you can extend a job offer. Many people grow tired of sifting through resumes and scheduling interviews, so they tend to hurry this process along—thus leaving room for mistakes.
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If you’re willing to put in the effort, there are some ways to ensure you’re choosing the appropriate applicant for the job. Read on for four steps to hiring the perfect addition to your team!
#1 Recruit Wisely
When you’re looking for a candidate with specific qualifications, a public job listing may not be the best recruitment strategy.
Many employers opt for targeted recruitment when searching for new hires. This may mean advertising the position to a smaller audience, such as:
- The career development department of a college or university
- Field-specific job posting sites
- Ask current employees for referrals
- Social media recruitment (like LinkedIn)
Bonus hiring resource: If you’re struggling to keep your hiring process organized, use a digital recruitment software to expedite each step.
#2 Request References
A list of references should be required along with a resume and cover letter. Many employers underestimate how much information can be extracted from contacting a candidate’s references.
Whether these references are previous employers, colleagues, or college professors, there are a few key questions you’ll want to ask anyone you’re able to get in touch with:
- Verify the candidate’s previous employment
- Ask about the candidate’s work style and professional demeanor
- Question whether or not they would work with the candidate again
- Delve into the candidate’s skills and qualifications
Bonus hiring resource: Make cross-checking references easier with an automated system. This will speed up the process of verifying references, especially when your applicant pool is on the larger side.
#3 Get a Background Check
Resumes and references can tell you a lot about a candidate, but not everything.
A thorough background check will reveal important information that employers should be wary of. This information includes:
- Previous criminal charges
- Credit score inquiries and debt collections
- Problems with previous employers
- Driving record
- Identity verification
It’s in your company’s best interest not to hire anyone without knowing their full history. To keep your employees and assets safe, make sure to fully vet any potential hires prior to offering them the position.
Bonus hiring resource: For those who aren’t sure where to get a background check, these can be done quickly and easily online. No need to hire the private investigator.
#4 Assign a Small Follow-Up Project
With any job, it’s important to get a glimpse at your candidate’s quality of work. The best way to gauge an applicant’s skills and motivation is by requesting a small assignment following your first interview.
Depending on your field, this could be:
- A piece of writing
- Proficiency tests for software programs
- Drafting a proposal
- Creating a spreadsheet, slideshow, or other document
Bonus hiring resource: Use an online quiz creator for either a pre-screening or post-interview assignment. This takes some of the pressure off you during the hiring process and allows the candidate to prove relevant knowledge and skills.
Do Your Team a Favor
It’s important to choose candidates that mesh well with your team. In a dream world, employers would be able to give every applicant a trial run—unfortunately, there isn’t enough time and resources to do that.
Using these hiring tips can help you narrow down your selection with greater ease. Following the steps listed here—while also using your best judgment and professional intuition—will result in a more thorough and successful recruitment process!