When your business is on the lookout for a new employee, the need for you to fill the vacancy faster revolves around recruitment costs. But finalizing the right hire is just as important as the pace of hiring. How can your SME avoid the most common hiring pitfalls?
Any job role in the UAE, which Bayzat has opened up for recruitment over the course of the past two years received more than 200 applications each on an average. Sorting these candidates can be a tedious task, even with a robust applicant tracking system and the UAE has one of the lowest hiring speed (in 2017) doesn’t help the situation at all - the average candidate in the UAE waits up to 35.8 days for a response on hiring rounds and assessments they attended.
How can SMEs minimize risks and cost of new hires? Here are the top eight mistakes you must avoid.
#1: Lack of clarity in job description on minimum expectations and performance benchmarks
You must carefully consider what skills, qualities, and qualifications required from the candidate before you start the recruitment process. The primary task you’ll need to consider is creating a job description that explicitly states exactly what an ideal candidate would need to deliver in the job role.
This process rules out any excuse for applicants to not have the right expectations about the job during an interview. Few important inclusions for your job descriptions can be:
- Routine tasks that are involved in the job role
- Any additional responsibilities & possible collaborations with other departments which may be part of the role
- Minimum requirements & expectations criteria for shortlisting
- Business history & background
- Company work culture, principles & adherence policy
- Your policy for diversity & the right to equal employment opportunity.
- The scope of future growth and mobility within the role, department, or the business.
#2: Drag the interview process instead of streamlining it
The major proportion of the SMEs in the UAE have interview processes that extend up to five rounds. This in-turn adds up to candidate bias and results in poor candidate experience, which hurts your brand and likelihood of recommendations. The earlier you assess the core criteria and values, better it is to judge the candidate’s capabilities and potential match for your in-house work culture.
They may also drop out half way if the process is lengthier than expected, so it is crucial that you set the expectations right about the whole process from the beginning and communicate adequately, when appropriate.
#3: Higher emphasis on technical skills instead of soft skills
All roles require a minimal amount of skills closely associated with the department, including entry-level jobs. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean such technical skills are the determining factor for qualification to progress through your recruitment round.
You need to simultaneously evaluate soft skills – the employee’s ability to communicate, lead, and the ethics they adhere to. If you don’t align these soft skills with your work environment and culture, you’ll end up with a wrong hire, and have to invest more in recruitment marketing within the next few weeks after this particular unsuccessful hiring round.
#4: Omitting to provide feedback
The recruitment process is rather daunting yet your candidate pool could improve themselves, if only they receive an additional nudge from your end as a potential employer who once assessed them. Employers tend to notify their applicants with a generic template email if in case they’re rejected, and often do not care about the effort they’ve made so far to progress through the application stages.
If you want to keep attracting good candidates, you want to create a hiring cycle that involves an action to provide consistent and actionable feedback to all candidates, regardless of the stage they’re knocked out at. This can just be a quick analysis of the candidate including the reason they weren’t a match for the role you were recruiting. A detailed feedback goes a long way toward improving your employer brand, and such applicants who receive a well-formatted feedback is more likely to recommend your open positions to other people in the future.
#5: Involving more than 5 recruiters for a single job role
While SMEs don’t always have the same resources with regards to manpower as relatively larger or established businesses, our fellow HR managers tend to be too creative and expand the recruitment rounds to get more people involved for different assessments. Long story short, having five or more people in charge can be worse than just having one or two. The reason being, opinions vary among each of them, and all their perspectives can be different.
Whilst some people might prefer the candidate to be blatantly honest, the other assessors would rather have them be able to articulate facts differently. Such instances can often occur when you’re recruiting for sales positions, where the job role demands to be spontaneous, and when you as a recruiter are trying to assess this particular quality.
#6: Insufficient rigor in reference checks
Unfortunately, numerous candidates lie on their Resume. It’s not always completely intentional though. At times, it is a case where applicants would simply want to make themselves look better.
Nonetheless, you have to check their references and verify their background, expertise, punctuality, professionalism, and likelihood to deliver for the particular job role you’re recruiting for.
#7: Overlooking the importance of flexibility instead of creating better opportunities to work
The modern employee experience has a lot more to do with making it easy for your team members to deliver on their role. As much as you’d expect them to carry out the necessary activities in a timely fashion, in-house employees enjoy a certain amount of space within the line managers and the rest of the team.
Micro-management contributes to a bigger proportion of distress, and lack of flexibility is the contradicting factor that is often ignored within this particular top-line cause.
New parents often would require facilities like working from home, or shorter working hours on particular days to pick up their children from school. Your team’s need and personal requirements can change overtime, and as a responsible employer, you need to consider their personal lives to maintain a happy work-life balance for your team, without which they are often forced to leave the business and opt for your challenger or competitor who may offer such benefits as part of their employment contract.
#8: Carry out frequent recruitment rounds instead of assessing your actual employment needs
Talent pipelining is your insurance against employee exits. The practice of equipping your talent pool with qualified candidates and engaging with them consistently is the key to maintaining a healthy pipeline.
Consider it as if your HR team is constantly hiring, even when there are no necessary openings that need to be filled immediately. Passive candidates are present in the market, who may also be interested in your business. However, they’re unknown to you as a recruiter and is the reason why you need to invest a lot more in refreshing your talent pipeline.
If any of your key employees drop off halfway, although it may call off for a crisis initially, it is not ideal to run an emergency recruitment round and invite new applicants over for the position. Recruiters usually resort to this measure when they do not currently have a healthy pipeline to depend on, but it is also not a good practice for controlling the pace of the hiring process.
Better relationships you have with passive candidates, easier it is for you to fill in these roles with qualified personnel.