The 10 Steps to Successful Recruitment: The Employers Guide

 In Careers Advice

The 10 Steps for Successful Recruitment: The Employers Guide


As the economy continues to be stable after spells of economic instability, candidates are less nervous about moving and it is imperative organisations recruit effectively and put a plan in place to attract high performing professionals. Here are 10 things you can do to remain competitive when looking to expand and on-board new employees.


  1. Decide on The Skills You Need & Dedicate a Budget to Obtain Them


Set time aside and answer the following questions to determine what you need and how you will go about getting the right person;


Think of hard skills and soft skills, what’s essential?

What isn’t essential, but could be trained and offered as an incentive?

What’s the market rate for compensation and bonus structures? Can you match or exceed that amount? If not, how else can you compensate or attract talent?

How much revenue do you expect this candidate to generate or save in Y1, Y2, and Y3?

How much will this candidate be worth to you annually in GP?

What will your sourcing strategy be? Can you use referrals, leads, LinkedIn, or a HR department who can dedicate time to searching?

Does your budget allow for outsourcing the assignment to an industry expert?

Can you attract professionals from your competitor’s directly or do you need a Headhunter for confidentiality and compliance?


  1. Establish an Exact Date as to When the Candidate Will Start


This is paramount. Write down a date you need this candidate by and work backwards through your recruitment process in this order;

Start date, notice period (4-12 weeks), preparation and acceptance of formal offer, interview process (2-4 weeks), shortlisting & longlisting (1-2 weeks), CV analysis, set-up of sourcing choice, job specification development, sign-off.


The entire recruitment process can take anywhere from 8 – 20 weeks, so always write your ideal start date down, and figure out how long you need. If you haven’t set yourself enough time, you might need to bring in someone on a contractual/temporary basis.


  1. Define Your Recruitment Process


Your company will be judged by the very people you want to hire. Don’t give candidates the impression that you are disorganised, don’t care, or both. Acting in an impressively timely manner and implementing a well-defined process will help mitigate the risks of recruitment. Get the right people in place to make sure the process happens as smoothly and as quickly as possible, co-ordinate the diaries of all the people involved in the hiring process and make sure you’re all agreed on the best way to bring in new team members. Make sure your agreed process allows you to thoroughly complete due diligence and validate any potential candidates who may join you.


  1. Create a Checklist for Every Single Stage of the Talent Acquisition Process


Who is responsible for what, when, and how? If you turn to an external supplier, make sure they know your market, have gravitas, and are easy to work with. Use their experience to help you plot your talent acquisition timeline. Here’s some food for thought;


Who will look at CVs?

When will they look at them? (As a batch or as they come through individually?)

How long will it take to action a particularly good CV?

What will the interview process look like? Telephone interview then final interview, or 2 face to face interviews? Maybe hold an assessment centre?

How quickly can you get offers out and signed? Can you do it online (Adobe echo sign)?

What will the candidates first 100 days look like? Do you need to set aside time for induction and training?

The point is, the process needs to be well-defined and well-controlled. All parties involved need to communicate and know what’s happening at all times.


  1. Make Sure Your Organisation’s Public Image is Professional


Remember, an interview works both ways – you need to sell your organisation to the candidate as much as they need to explain why you should hire them. If your team can’t do this effectively, then you may lose candidates to rivals who do it better. Answer the questions below and review;


What information can a candidate find about your company and your staff online

Do you have good reviews on ? If not, send an internal mail asking employees to review your organisation.

Does anybody talk about you social media? Do you have an effective and popular online presence? In the same way organisations check out interviewees’ social profiles, savvy candidates do the same for potential employers.

Why did your recent new recruits join? Aim to highlight these positives with potential employees too.

Think about what attracted you – why did you join, and why did you stay? How long did it take you to reach your senior position?

Can your interview team adapt their enthusiasm and interview style to appeal to each candidate they meet?

If you’re a start-up do your interviewers have financial information on how well capitalised your organisation is?

  1. Reduce Your Recruitment Process Turn-around Time


Time is THE major factor when trying to mitigate risk throughout the recruitment process. The more time it takes you and your staff to resource potential candidates, analyse CVs, and interview, the larger the effect on company performance. There’s also a significant correlation between process time and candidate offer acceptance. The longer the process takes, the less likely you are to land the dream candidate.


So what can you do to reduce the time needed? Here’s 5 tips;


Get interviews done in a batch. One afternoon is often enough to interview 3 candidates. For a single role, you don’t need to speak with more than 5 properly short-listed people. At least attempt to hold all interviews within 2-3 days.

Hold an assessment afternoon. Find an afternoon where 3 of your senior staff can interview 3 of the best short-listed candidates on different topics (technical, competency, personal). Plan a rotational routine, execute the interviews, de-brief, and then choose your preferred candidate afterwards.

Work alongside a Headhunter who knows the industry and can short list potential candidates for you in a short timescale. Give them available interview slots and set targets for them to be filled.

Utilise telephone interviews to pre-screen your shortlist and prevent time wasting. Sometimes issues which are not communicated on a CV can be a deal killer, telephone interviews allow you screen out the unsuitable… quickly.

Instead of having 2 interviews, make sure everybody who needs to be there attends the first interview. Make it a little longer and get the process completed there and then. It’s hard enough to align schedules and find mutually free time once.

  1. Found the Perfect Candidate? Take Action… Quickly!


You’ve just interviewed the dream candidate, you got along like a house on fire, and you have no doubts in your mind. Move quickly. Put together an offer above the candidates expectations, and get it to them as soon as you can. Hours after the interview are preferable, but at least within 2 days. Every day you keep a candidate waiting is a day they take a step back from you and towards your competitors.


Try and obtain verbal acceptance as soon as possible, Headhunters are invaluable resources for managing this step of the process, work with them to bring the candidate in. Remember, the deal isn’t closed until both parties sign the contract. Actioning the paperwork whilst waiting for verbal acceptance can save time and show the candidate you mean business.


  1. Apply The Right Amount of Pressure & Offer to Help With the Resignation Process


Have someone follow up the offer letter within a couple of days to check if the contractual terms are acceptable. Try and engage the candidate in light conversation and discover any objections they might have in which you can overcome.


If the offer is accepted, you’re mighty close to being able to celebrate. Resigning can be a hugely daunting process for anybody, and you should try and help with this process as much as possible. A Headhunter can provide consultancy for the candidate and reduce the risk of a counter-offer. When these are not taken seriously, they can put an end to your hopes of landing your dream candidate.


  1. Candidates who Have Just Handed In Their Notice Are Still Available!


In a talent-short market, don’t be surprised if they get invited to interview by another company after your offer has been made. After all, one offer is great, but two offers? Wowzah!


So, make sure you support them while they work through their notice period. Send them a congratulations or welcome card signed by the manager and team they’ll be working with? Invite them to project meetings, after-work gatherings, maybe even give them a head start on their role by sending induction documentation and get them emotionally and mentally involved straight away. The notice period is probably the most dangerous time of all. It’s when all that time, effort, and budget… could come to nothing.


  1. Make Their First Day Great!


How was your first day? You remember it well, everybody does, everybody asks too. Arrange something special for new members of the team, meet up for a special lunch, go out after work, make everybody introduce themselves in the morning, even send an internal mailshot with the new employee’s bio and CV. Increase comfort and moral from day 1 and watch them hit the ground running!


Organisations vary in size and function, it’s likely you’re unable to implement everything above, but the point I wanted to put across is just how important your recruitment process is and how many factors can affect its success. Your most valuable company asset is not the technology you’re developing, it’s your people. Bring in the best people, develop the best people, and they’ll develop the best companies.


Written by Jonathan Slater, Headhunter within healthcare sales. You can contact Jonathan on the following;

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