Recruiting Challenges in Today’s Difficult Market
Obtaining the right person for the right position can be a challenge. Though with today’s multitudes of recruitment methods life can be a bit simpler, the economic situation does not allow for much flexibility.
Traditional methods of recruiting employees through advertising, internal job postings, job fairs, college recruiting, and recruitment services are still effective, but the Internet offers opportunities for companies to sign up with services such as Career Builder, Opts Ladder (for executive positions), Monster.com and others.
Additionally, many companies post their job opportunities directly on their own web sites, linking the positions to an automatic method of online application. This procedure saves time and effort on both the part of the recruiter and the applicant. Newspapers offer online classified advertising posting services for companies who sign up.
With the fact that many companies are failing in today’s economic environment, a revamping of current recruiting policies is a necessary plan for companies. While traditional methods of recruitment still are somewhat viable, getting to the root of what a company needs in terms of human resources is critical.
Reviewing the human resources strategic plan is of utmost importance. Each department manger or director should meet with human resources to develop a plan for the future.
Keep in mind that history has shown that though layoffs or cutbacks in hiring occur during economic slumps, that recruitment again becomes an immediate focus as soon as things look up again. Human resources needs to be aware of that and have a plan in place to move as quickly and as proactively as possible should the company have decided to create hiring freezes and then to lift them. When hiring occurs reactively instead of proactively, mistakes can and are made.
Though it may go without saying for some companies, the search for higher-level executives differs quite a bit from hiring lower level or hourly employees. However, sometimes executives are recruited via networking channels: Whom You Know. While this works, companies sometimes also fail to check references and backgrounds for executive-level position candidates because of the “known quantity” factor, and difficulties sometimes spur.
Several steps must be taken to ensure the right candidate is chosen for the right job, be it an hourly or executive employee.
In particular in today’s tough economic climate, it is essential for a manager and human resources department to specifically identify the needs of a manager or department. One option might be to combine one position with another. Another option is to eliminate entirely an unnecessary position until better economic times. At that point things can be reevaluated.
Anticipate the Need to Hire
Again, moving proactively and evaluating human resources needs on a regular basis; that is, management and human resources conferring consistently about staffing needs, helps prevent hiring errors and misjudgment.
Develop the Candidate Search Pool
Don’t skimp on obtaining as many qualified candidates as possible. Some managers make the mistake of hiring the first qualified individual met. It is good practice to obtain a reasonable pool of candidates prior to checking backgrounds and making a job offer, even for higher-level positions.
Candidates should be assessed all equally and background checks and references performed consistently for all candidates. The same interview questions, or the same guidelines, should be used for all candidates. Veering off the question is understandable, common and a good thing, but ensuring all candidates are given the same opportunity so the company can make an informed and fair decision is of utmost prominence.
Once hired, employees require training regardless of their education, skills and background. Company policies and job specifics must be reviewed. Once trained, new employees should be monitored for productivity and job understanding. Some companies hold a new employee post-orientation session within three months of hire to determine if there are issues on the part of the employee, to help circumvent problems or turnover, or to solicit ideas.
Evaluate the company hiring process. Meet with managers to determine whether the steps taken have been successful; in other words, were the right people selected? What was the turnover rate for the new positions? Fix what needs to be fixed and continue and improve on what tactics seem to work for the company.