Executive Search Firm Advice on Common Hiring Mistakes

The executive search, candidate sourcing, and hiring processes are often difficult enough to handle with errors being made along the way. Conducting such procedures require an investment of time and money if they are to be done correctly, to resources the loss of which will only be exacerbated by a drawing out of the process due to complications brought about by failures on the hiring manager’s part. To help managers avoid making the same old mistakes, executive search firms have outlined the top five most common hiring mistakes and how to avoid them.

Find the Proper Starting Point

When companies begin their candidate sourcing processes they all tend to start in the same place, with the development of a job description and a candidate sourcing plan. Logical though these steps may seem, they are in fact a mistake. Taking such narrow steps is wrong because it indicates that the employer’s attention is focused too narrowly on the present rather than on the future. This is where a company’s hiring efforts should really begin, with a consideration for the company’s goals and how they best hope to help achieve those goals with this new hire.

Qualifications vs. Experience

When it comes to the candidate selection and interview process, far too many hiring managers focus solely on the candidate’s list of qualifications, their work history, skills and education. Instead, employers should be focusing on the candidate’s qualities and experiences. In the long run, qualifications mean nothing, whereas experience, on the other hand, can tell you a great deal about how much a candidate really knows.

Proper Advertising

At the start of any executive search the employer must put out some type of ad to inform candidates of the open position. The way in which these ads are worded can have a dramatic effect on the number of responses received. Many times these ads will consist of a brief description of the company, along with the title of the position in question. Rather than boring the reader with facts and figures about your organization, create instead a detailed list of all the qualities the perfect candidate should have.

Cutting Rather Than Sorting

Instead of going through a giant stack of resumes one by one with a fine toothed comb and trying to rank them and sort them individually, employers should instead begin their candidate elimination process by eliminating candidates in broad strokes. Rather than wasting valuable time analyzing each resume, simply skim each resume looking for those qualities deemed most crucial to filling the position, and immediately reject any who do not possess these qualities.

Take Added Measures

Most employers, once they have significantly reduced that initial pile of resumes, will jump straight into the interview process. This however, is yet another needless waste of time. Instead, hiring managers should apply an extra stage to the interview process. By simply taking a few minutes aside for each potential candidate to conduct a brief telephone interview, employers can quickly and efficiently weed out candidates who, though they may look good on paper, are still far from being acceptable.

Published by Conselium Executive Search, the global leader in compliance search.  

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