Flooded Candidate Pool, Still Making Wrong Hires... Why? / Human Capitalist - August 2009
Flooded Candidate Pool, Still Making Wrong Hires... Why?
by J.B. Hunt
First of all, you're not alone! However, the question remains: Why are we unable to make great hiring decisions? The answer is simple: BIAS. Attracting candidates is easy today. Screening out all of the unqualified to discover a superior performer is the real challenge. This challenge also means we must look at the job objectively and eliminate any biases that keep us from selecting the best candidate.
We all see the world from our own viewpoint. This viewpoint is influenced by how we value experience, knowledge, economics, aesthetics, altruism, power and tradition. When we are confronted by a person who sees the world differently, our views could be called biases. Neither right or wrong, nor good or bad, biases are simply a reflection of our personal viewpoint. Oftentimes, this personal viewpoint is unknowingly injected into the hiring process even when it is not relevant to a specific position or to the organization itself. When this happens, it creates a barrier, preventing us from selecting truly superior performers.
Today we have laws that keep us from acting on our biases as they relate to gender, age and nationality, but there are still biases that get in the way. Many people are also unknowingly biased on experience, education and intelligence, and this keeps them from selecting superior performers. In addition, people bring much more to the job, including their passion, beliefs, personal skills and behaviors. Perhaps one of the most important personal skills is that of personal accountability, and most companies do not have an awareness of its importance, nor do they have a way to measure it.
Determining the ideal candidate for a position can prove to be not only the most frustrating part of the hiring process, but also the most difficult. Each person involved in the hiring process will have his or her own idea of what skill set, experience and education is required for the position. Job descriptions begin to assist recruiters, internal and external, in narrowing down the resume requirements. Meanwhile, the personal skills, behavioral style, attitude and motivations of the ideal candidate tend to be undefined and left up to the interviewer. This type of hiring process becomes subjective, rather than objective, and leaves all involved parties frustrated and with less than desirable results.
Typical hiring processes allow for little preparation time on the front end, with more time allotted for interviewing. This often results in a partially or even completely wrong hire, which, in turn, contributes to significant managerial time loss. By turning the process around, you will save time and energy, and improve your hiring decisions, therefore improving your bottom-line.
After years in the executive search industry and making internal hires, Hunt Executive Search created the Expert Search Process. This process and its associated templates to guide the process, along with a patented job benchmarking process, has allowed us to achieve a 92% retention rate on the people we place through our fully executed search process. Eliminating bias is the key to successful hiring. The only way to achieve this is through an objective process that looks at all aspects of the ideal candidate.
It's been our experience that companies are unwilling vs. unable to invest the time and energy required to organize and execute each of the critical processes. In addition to dysfunction, many organizational leaders feel too overwhelmed to invest the hours required with each short list candidate in order to hire an "A Player" for the role.
There is no magic bullet or panacea. Hiring and retaining "A Players" is a difficult and daunting task. There is no shortcutting the process and if you try, the costs will be in the millions.
For more information about:
Job Benchmark and Competency Modeling
Customized Interview Process including subject matter experts and interview teams to conduct;
Performance Interview (aka Topgrading or Chronological In-Depth Structured)
TriMetrix and Performance DNA Assessment w/ Multi-Respondent Reporting & Gap Analysis
Reference Interviews (Preliminary & In-Depth)
Please give "JB" Hunt a call directly or contact the Partner, Principal or Associate you have been working with.