Executive Search Firms on the Horrors of Bad Hires

By September 25, 2012 No Comments

Hiring is never an easy process. You dedicate the time an effort to finding the perfect individual, someone who fulfills all the necessary skill and experience requirements, someone who looks good on paper and interviews well. However, despite all this time and dedication, once the individual has been hired things go quickly go bad. It’s a hard thing to deal with, having to fire someone that you put so much effort into bringing on board through exhaustive executive search and candidate sourcing followed by rigorous interviews, but it happens to the best. In some cases this can be a result of the interviewer not having assessed the candidate’s compatibility with the company’s corporate culture, or maybe they just weren’t as thorough in the background checks as they ought to have been, but whatever the reason maybe, this is not a mistake that can be made often if you have any hopes of avoiding costly losses. In attempting to quantify the losses typically felt by companies dealing with a bad hire, taking into account the collective salary expenses, time and resources spent in the hiring process, and the ill effects imposed on other employees, the grand total has been estimated to range anywhere from $25,000 to $50,000, and even higher in some cases.

To help guide employers to not make these same mistakes in the future, here are three pro tips put together by executive search firms to improve hiring practices and avoid making bad hires.

For starters, while given the current talent shortage that has plagued the job market in recent years it may seem important to zero in on a candidate who shows a great deal of promise and begin working to sell them on why they should want to work for this company, far too often employers have a tendency to get carried away, to the extent that they spend more time selling the company than they do interviewing the candidate. It has been recommended time and again that the candidate be made to do roughly eighty percent of the talking during the interview if the employer is to get a good feel for them. Also, while a single candidate may turn up who seems more promising than the rest, it is still important to see as many as possible in case one doesn’t pan out or someone better turns up.

Next, more employers should really begin to embrace alternative forms of hiring, namely temp-to-hire methods which can allow them to bring an individual into the company on a trial basis. This has the incredible benefit of allowing employers to see just how well an individual is going to work within their company and its culture and do so in a real working setting before having to decide if they want to keep them on or not.

Lastly, all too often employers won’t act quickly enough when they see that a new hire isn’t working out as well as they hoped. Instead of doing what needs to be done, they make excuses about how the individual in question just hasn’t gotten settled in yet and that they need more time, or they try to reason that perhaps they can drive the individual to work better through positive or negative reinforcement. This is not acceptable. The best bet always stands that, as soon as you realize someone isn’t working out, cut your losses and move on before this bad hire has put too much of a drain on the company’s time and resources.

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

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