7 mistakes your business can avoid when recruiting your next employee

Posted: 12/11/19

Recruiting the right employee can be a tough task. Recently we have been working on a lot of recruitment campaigns for various clients and we have helped them to identify and solve a number of potential pitfalls in their processes. 

We’ve compiled a list of some of the easy mistakes to make during recruitment so you too can avoid them when you hire your next employee.

It can be expensive to hire the wrong person or deal with a claim from an unsuccessful candidate, so:

Here are 7 mistakes we can help you to avoid when recruiting 

  1. No job description

Ideally, you only want to receive applications from suitable candidates. So, you should start the recruitment process with a clearly defined role and a list of required technical skills. This should reduce unqualified applicants and give you a basis for comparing potential employees against business needs.

Top tip: Put together a person and a job specification for each role. If you are unsure what type of person will fit in with your team, we can help you identify what you need.

2. Allowing the recruitment process to take too long

If you don’t have time to effectively recruit a top-quality employee, you will likely miss out on the best person for the job. Don’t take too long to screen CVs, identify relevant candidates, and schedule interviews or you run the risk of the right person finding an alternative role in the meantime. 

We often see the recruitment process slowed due to holidays or unexpected absence. It is important to take this time into account and manage candidate expectations from the start. 

Top tip: Always communicate expected timescales and have a process to notify those who aren’t successful, as well as those who are.

3. No standard set of interview questions

You need a standard set of questions to ask each interviewee so that you can genuinely compare candidates. Consistency between interviews helps you to choose the right employee and should avoid interviewers asking any inappropriate questions.

Top tip: Include competency-based questions to test whether a candidate has the right experience. It saves a lot of time if only candidates who really have a shot move to the next stage.

4. Judging a candidate on first impressions 

Only make a decision on any candidate once the interview has finished. Sometimes your first impressions are not as accurate as you think. On many occasions our clients have successfully hired someone who they didn’t think were going to be the right candidate based on preconceptions.

5. Not training your interviewers 

Interviewing is a specialised skill. You should offer training to people who regularly recruit candidates to show them how to conduct a well-structured interview. 

Ideally, more than one person should be involved in interviewing and decision making. We often act as a second interviewer for clients to provide valuable insight. Being independent can help remove any claim of bias during the process.

6. Lack of full interview notes

Take detailed interview notes of what each applicant says. Ensure that your comments are always professional. Really probe your applicants’ responses to gather evidence of their past achievements.

Good notes will support your decision making and will give you the evidence to support your case if you need to respond to any claims from unsuccessful candidates. 

Top tip: You should keep interview notes for six months. 

7. Forgetting your legal obligations 

Employment law can be a minefield, so it pays to get it right. The Equality Act, for example, aims to ensure that groups of people are not excluded from applying for a role due to misguided preconceptions. Recruitment adverts must be compliant and your whole process must follow regulations. 

Always take a consistent approach, which leaves less risk of discrimination as all candidates are treated the same way.

We can help you avoid making these mistakes

At GFHR we can help make sure you avoid making all these mistakes so you can be sure that your next employee is the right employee.

We can act as your HR department to handle as much or as little of the recruitment process as you desire. We can save you time and ensure you only see candidates with the right skills. Our consistent approach has been developed to follow regulatory guidelines, thus reducing your risk of discrimination claims.

Our services include:

  • Liaise with recruitment agencies or handle direct applications
  • Screen CVs
  • Arrange interviews
  • Conduct, or sit on, first round interviews 
  • Assist with onboarding process – negotiating terms of employment, reference checks, documentation and contracts of employment
  • Develop an induction programme

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