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Top 5 recruitment mistakes you can avoid in 2019

23 Apr 12:00 by John Austin

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The stakes have never been higher when it comes to recruitment. Industry-wide skills shortages have made it increasingly hard to identify, attract and retain great talent in what is now a candidate-led market. As a result, tried and tested recruitment processes no longer generate the same success they once did, with hiring teams suffering the consequences of making common mistakes. Here, we look at some of these mishaps and how employers can avoid them. 

Copying and pasting

Writing accurate job descriptions take a lot of time and effort, so the temptation to use an existing one and just changing a few details is understandable. However, the only way to stand out from the competition and attract the very best candidates is by crafting an accurate and engaging description that’s tailored to the person you’re looking for. Additionally, a poorly written description, or one that lacks effort, may lead to applications from the wrong candidates and result in a lot of wasted time sifting through them and potentially having to start the search again. That’s why it saves time, in the long run, to get your job description right first time even if that means spending more time on it than you usually would.

Going rogue in interviews

In an effort to make candidates more comfortable, some employers keep things casual in interviews. While this might work to take the edge off an interviewee’s nerves, you might fail to gain vital information about the candidate’s skills, qualifications, experience and aspirations. Freestyling it can also increase the risk of unconscious bias playing a part in the selection process. Instead, ensure you have a clear structure to interviews with set questions that help make comparing candidates a lot easier. Additionally, always try to have more than one person in each interview so that you can compare notes and ensure you’ve captured everything.

Radio silence

Great candidates are likely to apply for several positions at once, so if you don’t act fast, the chances are they’ll be snapped up by a competitor. It’s crucial to be thorough when it comes to your recruitment process, so if it takes time, it’s critical you keep any candidates in the loop about the reasons why. If you regularly have candidates getting in touch for feedback about an application or a status update, it’s probably time you reviewed the process to see if you can speed it up, or at least keep in contact with candidates.

Failing to ask for feedback

Candidate feedback can hold the answers to any recruitment issues you may have experienced so far. Successful hires will only tell you so much, with feedback likely to be positively biased. However, unsuccessful candidates can provide a more balanced view of their experience. A lot of employers believe there’s little value in this, as the candidate is feeling rejected so likely to be negative, but it can be incredibly useful. One of the best ways to capture this feedback is through an experience survey which is sent to all candidates. And remember to always record the data you gather from this and use it to make positive changes to your overall process.

Going in blind

You may end up looking for a professional in a field where expertise is lacking in your current team. For example, if you require a tech professional to manage a particular system, or you’re introducing a marketing department to your business for the first time. Not having a full understanding of a role or the skills, experience and attitude a person needs to do it successfully increases your chances of making the wrong hire. This is where using a specialist recruitment agency can help, allowing you to tap into expert knowledge that your in-house team might not possess. Through selecting the right recruitment partner, you’ll get access to valuable insights and advice that will help you find the right person or team for the job.

If you’re looking for a specialist recruiter for the marketing & PR, data & insight, digital, technology and creative sectors, Henry Nicholas can help. Find out more about the work we do for our clients here or contact us on 0117 317 8103 to discuss your requirements with our experts.