Trick or Treat: 5 Big Hiring Mistakes

Is your new hiree a total treat to work with, or do you feel you’ve been tricked into hiring him or her?

Do you wonder where you went wrong during the screening and interview process?

Here are a few common mistakes companies make when hiring, that lead to a cultural and/or skills mismatch.

1. Overly narrow job specifications.

Let us ask you something.  Would you spend lots of resources searching for a very specific skill set… or would you rather hire an available employee with a broader range of skills who shows the ability to learn very quickly anything you need him to?

Many job posts today list ridiculous requirements for skills which could be learned (by a smart employee) in a matter of days on the job.  The result is you limit yourself, turn off qualified candidates, and make your search more difficult.

Look for a worker whose fundamental strengths and qualities make him an excellent fit – not one who knows how to operate each piece of your highly specific software or equipment.

2. Trying to find someone last minute.

As with anything, last minute is rarely good.  It’s better to be prepared.  Otherwise you end up scrambling and making forced decisions that result in a bad fit.  When you do find yourself needing a worker yesterday, staffing and temp agencies are good bets because they already have a pool of candidates they’ve evaluated for you.

3. Don’t prep the candidate for the interview.

Set your candidate up for success.  Why wouldn’t you give them information they need about the job requirements, the person interviewing them, and the company before their interview?  A really smart candidate will ask for that information.  To provide it is making your hiring process more efficient and effective.

4. Not talking about the job and work enough.

Often interviews go like this: you ask questions about the worker’s resume and past employment history.  You chat with them and size up the way they conduct themselves in the interview and their ability to answer your questions.  But you fail to get into detail about the actual job requirements and ask specific questions related to if the worker 1) has the ability to fulfill these requirements and 2) wants to fulfill these requirements.

Remember, you’re not interviewing someone to learn about their past or how well they interview; you’re interviewing them to find out if they can and want to do the job you need done.

5. Inadequate reference checks

More people than you think lie about their history and/or provide irrelevant references.  As an employer, you should ask for specific references for people who worked with the candidate, and you should follow through in checking them.  Otherwise don’t be surprised if you wind up, well, surprised.

About TRC Staffing Services, Inc.


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