A business is only as good as its people. Therefore, knowing who to hire to fulfil specific workforce needs is of utmost importance. To do so, HR is responsible for constantly improving their hiring and onboarding processes as well as their retention strategies. Otherwise, one of two evils may befall; the company will either lose top talent to its competitors or the wrong people will be hired. To avoid these pitfalls, go through the following guide. It does not solely focus on standard hiring practices but also on strategies to attract and retain the cream of the crop.

Adapt the Job Interview

When you are trying to understand who a candidate really is and whether they are the right person for a job, the largely scripted, predictable interview may not offer enough insight. Instead, it should be adjusted by asking more creative and challenging questions which would push any candidate to show their true colours. A few questions that can be quite revealing are:

  • What kind of animal would you be? And why?

  • What is your natural strength?

  • What qualities of your parents do you like the most?

  • What is the biggest misperception people have about you?

Show them around

Firstly, most candidates will not be expecting a tour of the company and this will catch them off guard. This means that recruiters will get a better sense of their personality and how they handle the unexpected. More importantly, while walking around the workplace candidates will have to interact with others. How they treat the people they meet and how much genuine interest in the organization they show are critical.

Take them to a restaurant

There is so much to be learnt about a person during a meal. Does the candidate treat everyone politely and respectfully? Are they courteous to waiting staff? Can they keep up a conversation? All these questions may tell recruiters how good a fit a candidate is and whether they are a team player or not.

Have them ask questions

Seasoned recruiters consider the questions a candidate asks more important than the ones they answer and for good reason. This is the best way to find out what the candidate values, how curious they are about the business and how much effort they are willing to make to add value. The questions they may ask will also reveal whether they have done their homework before coming to the interview.

Ask others to pitch in

Even the best judges of character occasionally make wrong judgement calls. It is, thus, a good idea to ask for a second opinion. Start with other colleagues who will have to interact with the candidate if they are hired. They are likely to notice things you may not be able to. Then, go on the all-mighty, all-knowing internet. You are sure to find common acquaintances who know the candidate in a professional capacity who can tell you about their strengths and weaknesses, how they perform and how they treat others.

Opt for building diverse teams

To achieve that, you will need to overcome the implicit bias informing our decisions by which we instinctively go for the person who is more like us. A good rule of thumb to ensure that people with different perspectives on growth, innovation and problem-solving are brought in is to hire the person who is the least like you. To achieve this, the first contact with a potential hire could be over the phone, where you will have the opportunity to listen to what the person can do without any preconceptions forming.

Give them a take-home task

In fact, this is the best way to get a sense of how they work before making any hiring decisions. Asking them to put pen to paper will also reveal how well they communicate in writing and, ultimately, how they think. Some homework tasks to consider is giving them a problem the company is currently facing and requesting an analysis/strategic plan or alternatively asking them to describe themselves in 500 words. Furthermore, it is very important not to set the deadline yourself. Instead ask them to set it themselves in order to see their time management skills and work ethic in action.

Trust Your Inner Voice

When your gut instinct tells you that something you cannot quite place is off about a candidate, you should try to find what. Do not leave anything to chance because the future of the organization depends on you making informed, well-thought decisions. Ultimately, however, in some cases the pressure is such that striking a balance between making the best hiring decision and the urgency to fill a role is hard.

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/guides/business/how-to-hire-the-right-person