“You want to hire the most qualified, not the most desperate.”
There. I said it. You need help, and you want the best help available. I offer my tips on how you can make sure you get the best of the best.
1. BE DETAILED IN YOUR AD
Break it down into bullets and do provide:
- a general overview of the job;
- a list of duties and responsibilities;
- the qualities of the ideal candidate;
- and lastly but most important – information on who you are with a link to your website.
The more information you provide, the better the seekers can prepare and give you the info you need to make a sound decision. Applying for a job without knowing anything about the employer is like playing darts with a blindfold. You don’t want a dart shot in your forehead now do you?
2. READ THE RESUMES BEFORE INTERVIEWING YOUR CANDIDATES
Yes, you are the employer. Yes, you are in control. Yes, the competition is ferocious. It comes back down to the first line in this post: do you want the most desperate or the most qualified? Between the interviews, take a few minutes to review the resume to better know who will be walking through your door. Everybody’s time is valuable, yours is not more precious than the seeker’s.
You may expect your candidate to hand you a resume as he or she sits down, but the candidate does expect you to have at least glanced the documents prior to the meeting. A quick speed read in front of the candidate makes things awkward, and only helps the interviewee to feel even less important. Do what you can to make this person as comfortable and confident as possible.
3. DON’T ASK THEM TO TELL YOU THE EXPECTED SALARY
You’re the boss, you have a budget for this position, you know what you can afford, and what you are willing to pay. Imposing them to tell you their minimum will only indicate their level of desperation. Again: Do you want the most desperate or the most skilled? Tell them the pay, let them decide if they are willing to do the work for that amount or not.
4. REVIEW/EDIT YOUR POSTING
What are your thoughts about resumes with typos? Pretty bad isn’t it. Don’t expect high quality when your own ad is laced with errors, poor formatting and confusing structure. If you invest less than 15 minutes in your ad and rush through the process the message you are sending is that the hiring is of no importance to you. If it’s not important, then why are you hiring?
Are you assuming people are so hungry they’ll come crawling face down in the muck for minimum wage? And by the way, that was a Big Lebowski reference, know about pop culture if you call for people with a sense of humor.
5. DON’T WASTE THEIR -NOR YOUR- TIME
Not letting them know who you are before the interview is wasting everybody’s time. Not reading their resume, is wasting everybody’s time. Scheduling the interview knowing the candidates will show up early, and making them wait beyond their appointment is wasting everybody’s time. Knowing 5 minutes into the interview you are not interested in them, and prolonging the meeting is wasting everybody’s time. Chances are you will know within 5 minutes if they are a fit.
I’ve once had an employer give me a typical day followed by “What would you do in this situation?” Instead of answering that question, I asked “Is this a common occurrence, or a once in a while thing?” When they told me it was common, and to be expected daily I thanked them for their time, and told them the job was not for me. I ended the interview on the spot. They were shocked, and insulted. Sadly they never realized just how lucky they were! The interview process is a 2-way street.
This post is part of a new series on the labor market and the hiring process. This is the 2nd piece of this series. The system is broken. I want to start the discussion, hopefully something good will come of it for our society.