INSIGHTS


Why is the hiring process taking so long?

The interview process can take a long time, losing potential candidates.

Organizations thrive through their employees. Staff members represent the face of the company as they interact with clients and ensure that business objectives are being met. However, there are times when good workers leave or more employees are needed to support changing demands.

Hiring the right person is an art, and it's becoming more expensive for longer periods of time used to search for the best applicant. At the same time, business leaders want to get it right the first time, which can lead to a longer hiring process and increase the chance of missing out on quality candidates. Let's take a closer look at why the hiring process might be taking so long and what you can do to avoid losing your best applicants.

1. More screening methods and interviews than ever

Interviews are rarely one-and-done, but top talent and passive job seekers don't typically have time to go through three in-person interviews alongside an initial phone screening. There are more steps involved with interviews, and there are further deviations based on the level of skills required to do the job. According to research by Glassdoor, between 2010 and 2014, there were significant increases in the number of background checks, drug tests, skills tests and personality tests used to screen potential hires. Organizations are increasingly evaluating candidate skills to ensure that their expertise matches up with their resume. These processes are critical to not only ensuring the applicant is a good cultural fit, but that they also have the knowledge necessary to do the job effectively.

Applicants must go through more steps than ever.Applicants must go through more steps than ever.

2. Vague or narrow job descriptions weed out job seekers

The job description is the most important piece of information that a business can give potential candidates. The description must tell exactly what is expected in order for applicants to gauge if they are a good fit. However, a hiring manager might not know what they want until they see it, or might modify the job description mid-search, the Society for Human Resource Management wrote. This creates a significant number of problems in attracting the right people and draws out the hiring process.

"Recruiters themselves often have a more practical outlook, but that doesn't count for much if hiring managers aren't held accountable when they drag their feet, either because they are searching for 'unicorn' candidates—those that are too good to be true—or just too distracted to make hiring a high priority," SHRM noted.

Of course, technical jobs and other high-level positions are also going to take longer for the sheer amount of skills necessary to do the job effectively. In the past, organizations could take their time picking the best person, but with the rising demand for IT professionals, this lax attitude is no longer viable. Rather than searching for perfection, it's just as important to look for good and great candidates. Expanding your qualifications can help not only bring in some of the most necessary skills, but might also result in filling the position faster.

"Clear communication and detailed conversations about the interview process are necessary."

3. Applicants lose interest

With so many hoops to jump through and the time it takes to actually complete everything, it's easy to see why potential applicants might lose interest and look elsewhere. The Wall Street Journal columnist Sue Shellenbarger noted that how employers treat recruits serves as a good barometer for how they're going to behave. If an employer goes dark for weeks and then calls with a job offer, it's possible that the candidate will turn it down. Clear communication and detailed conversations about the interview process are necessary to set applicant expectations and retain your best options.

Some tests might also cause job seekers to walk away. Recruits might be asked to complete a certain task as part of their skill evaluation. However, it's possible that companies are more interested in taking your idea and won't offer a job. In these situations, the best course of action is to show your skills without providing too much detail. This will ensure that you aren't giving away your expertise for free while still having a good shot for the position.

The interview process must be re-engineered to ensure that you don't lose your best candidates and can find someone to fill the position in a timely manner. For more information on hiring best practices, visit ProSourceIT today.