10 Tips to Attract the Right Candidate

August 15th, 2014

Hiring the right candidate is essential for any successful organisation. This article gives 10 tips which you can implement that will help you select the best match for any given job.

1.    Develop a proper job description

The job description is often overlooked in many cases, this is bad practice because candidates’ decision to apply will be based solely on the responsibilities and how the position is communicated. If the job description is too vague, it will fail to attract the right caliber of candidates. Also, careful attention should be paid for the job title, keeping it simple is better so use something which describes the role i.e. ‘Cleaner’ rather than ‘hygiene technician’.
2.     Select the interviewing team properly

A set of experienced employers should be involved in the interviewing and decision making however it can also help to involve the people who will actually be working with the selected candidate. Current employees who serve in a similar or the same position will be able to relate to the candidate and encouraging them to make decisions on his/her compatibility will help them to feel more motivated and involved.

3.    Prepare fully for the interview
Proper interview style should be determined here and the relevant criteria and questions should be prepared ahead of time. Vital aspects such as the interview structure and good communication are essential at this stage to avoid discrimination. The interview questions should be based on the job requirements and should not discriminate on grounds of sex or race. See our interviewing article for more.

4.    Conduct a professional interview

Many interview strategies are available. The 70/30 rule should apply here. You should try to ensure that the candidate talks during 70% of the interview and the interviewer talks for only 30% of the time. See our interviewing guide for a detailed explanation of how to properly conduct a competency based interview.

5.    Fully explain the job

Should the candidates idea of the job not match the reality of what the job actually involves, it is highly likely that they will leave soon after being employed. This is a disaster because it means you have to begin the entire recruitment process again. Be careful to fully explain the job to the candidates during the interview and check to see if they have understood. Remember interviewing is not just about selecting excellent people, it’s also about making sure those people really want to do the job.

6.    Communicate often
Communication
Make sure you are communicative with all applicants throughout the process. Feedback should be given as soon as possible. Inform the candidates who are selected as well as those who have not been successful. Recognise that when someone applies for a job with you they are also often forming their first impression of interacting with your company.

7.    Select a wide pool of shortlisted candidates

Be wary of shortlisting too harshly and only ending up with only one or two candidates to interview. Provided you have implemented a broad advertising campaign (click here to learn how), you should always have at least three candidates for the final interview. This will make sure that if you lose your top candidate, you will always have another two or more who are also good choices.

8.    Undertake a structured induction

Having selected the best candidate, you should give him/her a detailed induction to give them enough information to become productive. Do not expect new starters to immediately become good performers, on average it will take 90 days for them to become fully effective.

9.    Start on a probation period

The employee should be given the chance to start the work under a probation period. This will help the line manager to further test the skills and the talents expressed by the employee at interview and will give both parties an easy way out should the new hire fail to deliver in the expected way. Probation periods vary in length but are usually around 6 months. You may want to start employees on a slightly lower rate of pay or hold off giving full employee benefits until they have passed their probation.

10.    Follow up

Once the employee has accepted the position, follow up promptly with the required paperwork (contracts, forms etc). When following up, it’s important to make sure that any potentially contentious issues are discussed during the last stage interviews so that there are no unexpected surprises for the candidate. Salary, probation periods, benefits etc, should all have been discussed throughout the recruitment process.

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