There are a number of things to remember when recruiting as getting it wrong can be expensive both in terms of management time and cost, but don’t worry, help is at hand.
Essentially there are two key areas of risk for your business:
- Recruiting the wrong person
- Having to defend a claim from an aggrieved unsuccessful candidate
To enable you to recruit right first time, having a process in place to attract, develop, motivate and retain the best and brightest people for your business is the smart thing to do and helps you mitigate the risks detailed above.
During the recruitment process, a lot is taken on trust. Everyone recognises that to get through the door, the contents of the CV are vital and that can lead to a little “embellishment” to improve one’s chance, so it is vital that due diligence is applied.
Recruitment tips from MAD-HR
When you are making an investment in an asset for your business, you do your homework and make sure that the item will add value to your business and provide you with a good and healthy return. The way you handle recruitment is no different – in fact, the impact of a bad decision can be immense. So here are some of MAD-HR’s top recruitment tips:
Make sure you are clear on the requirements of the job and write these down. These may already be defined in your job descriptions. What knowledge and skills are needed to do the job (give some consideration to your future plans for the business) and what sort of attitude does the applicant need to work well with you and the existing team? In smaller businesses, the impact of a poor fit in a team can be felt swiftly and could upset the harmony and balance of your business, so this is a vital consideration.
Job application forms
To avoid over-inflated CVs, think about using a standard application form – it makes it harder for employment gaps to be hidden and ensures that you are looking at like-for-like information when deciding who to call for an interview.
When making your decision about who you want to see, make notes on why you deselected those that you have discarded. This is important as you may need to rely on this information if you are faced with a challenge by a disgruntled applicant.
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Write down some questions that will enable you to test the candidate’s knowledge, skill and experience. Using the same questions for each candidate also ensures consistency which is great to show that each applicant has been treated fairly.
If your role requires expertise in a particular area, do not be afraid of asking ‘technical questions’ during the interview to test the candidate’s experience. Ask open questions and encourage candidates to provide examples of when they have shown a particular skill.
Use the interview as an opportunity to engage the candidate in why your company is a great place to work. Share with them your vision and values for your business – this enables them to see what you offer as an employer. We would also recommend a tour of the workspace and the opportunity to meet some of your current employees. One of the questions that they want to know is why you are recruiting for the role now. There is nothing more exciting than joining a business that is growing because it is successful. Sharing your passion for your business will get them excited about the possibility of coming to work for you – this is a vital element to get the new employee onboard and productive as swiftly as possible. Remember that even if the potential employee may not be right for the role that you are recruiting for at the time, they could be right for another role in the future or have friends or family who are or could become your customers, so a positive candidate experience is important.
Take thorough notes from each interview and keep them. They may have to be used in evidence should a disgruntled applicant make a claim. Please ensure that all comments remain professional.
Improve your interviewing skills
Interviewing is a skill that not everyone has. MAD-HR can offer businesses support when interviewing by sitting alongside the recruiter or run training courses for recruiting managers to ensure that the process is fair and consistent and help them to improve their ability to select great candidates.
Always make sure that you request to see the candidate’s original examination certificates, passport and driving licence (if this is a requirement of the role).
Employment background checks
Consider carrying out independent background checks for employees to verify employment history, qualifications, etc. Carry out written reference checks and then try to call the writer to verify that the reference is valid. Often former employers are more willing to speak on the telephone and ‘off the record’. It is also not unheard of for employees to get friends to write references for them rather than the HR department or their manager, or to write their own reference using their employer’s headed paper. You can also use social media platforms such as LinkedIn to gather further insight into the candidate’s work history.
Another crucial part of the recruitment process, once you have decided to appoint, is to carry out pre-employment screening, such as checking evidence of mandatory training required for the role or criminal record checks if required. It’s essential that before you start someone new in your business, you are satisfied that they have the right to work in the UK, by carrying out Right to Work checks.
Recruiting is a great way to meet new people and when done right it can strengthen your business as you cannot keep doing everything yourself. If you need help, the team at MAD-HR are here to support you as much or as little as you need. We are not a recruitment agency, but we want to help businesses get better at finding and retaining talent for their business.