If you've been in the workforce for even a little while, chances are you've had a bad experience in the hiring process
By Tym Lawrence, director, solutions architects (APAC) at SumTotal Systems
If you’ve been in the workforce for even a little while, chances are you’ve had a bad experience in the hiring process.
Importantly, I’m not talking about situations where you, as a candidate, have found yourself out of your depth or failed to shine.
Instead, I’m referring to a recruitment process that is lengthy, disorganised or irrelevant. It might start with a painful application process or involve a poor interview.
The end result is that the entire experience of applying for a role is so onerous or frustrating that it leaves you with a bad taste in your mouth before you even reach the point of considering an offer.
- Making it hard to apply for a role in the first place.
- Having a disorganised hiring process in general – for instance asking for documents multiple times, not confirming interviewer names and titles, location or times beforehand and being unclear on the next steps for candidates who are successful in the current step.
- Unprofessional interviewing - for instance running multiple rounds of interviews but failing to share notes between interviewers so questions are being repeated in each round. Another example is asking inconsistent or irrelevant questions – such as asking someone why they’re leaving their employer when they’re an internal candidate!
- Not communicating with the candidate is the worst sin. Even if you are busy (and we all are), you should at least let the candidate know their status and the next step.
- Taking too long to make an offer and potentially missing out on the right person.
Thankfully, these sorts of mistakes can be rectified by using a Talent Acquisition System, often part of a larger Talent Management System. This sort of HR solution will help you provide a seamless and easy experience for all your potential talent. To illustrate this, I want to look in more depth at the application, interview and offer elements of a typical recruiting process.
- When asking candidates to complete a form online, ask for too much information, you can determine the nitty gritty at interview stage. Do you really need the full list of jobs going back 10 or 20 years?
- If candidates are able to upload a CV (or connect to an online one) as part of the process, make that the first task and then pre-populate the form with information from the CV to save the candidate time.
- Could you use the CV to suggest matching jobs to the candidate or show how well they fit the key requirement for the job they are interested in?
- Given how much job hunting takes place on smartphones, it’s also key to ensure your online application from is mobile-friendly. Indeed, in most of Asia, you need to be mobile first, not just mobile friendly. For example, could someone register on your job site using just their mobile phone number and a code you send them via SMS?
Questions should focus on attaining information that will benefit the organisation such as determining a candidate’s attitudes or how he/she approaches problems, for example.
Research shows that gimmicky brainteasers or vague questions such as “Where do you see yourself in five years?” deliver no benefit to the organisation in terms of determining the best candidate for the role. Focusing on how they will fit into the team and business culturally is much more likely to help predict an individual’s success in the business.