One recent candidate I spoke with received an offer after 8 interviews; seven one-on-one interviews, an industry exam, construction of a business plan, complete with Powerpoint, and a panel interview thrown in for good measure. And, all of this while she was still working. The most I’ve ever heard was 22 for a law firm!! It would have been 23 but the janitor was out sick. Clearly the candidate wanted to join this firm and clearly the firm’s talent acquisition process is severely broken! How about yours?
I understand the need to be diligent when interviewing new talent for your organization. After all, we’re not becoming a less litigious society and companies cetainly cannot afford a bad hire. A quick google search on “How to ace an interview” brought back over 58,000,000 hits in half a second! Yes, the odds are stacked against you and that’s why you need to be crystal clear on what you want/need and the process you’ll employ to find the right fit.
How many great candidates are you missing due to an arcane, outdated process? We’ve found that top performers, especially those at the pinnacle of their game, will self-select out of a poor process. What then does a poor talent acquisition process say about your company or you as a hiring manager? As the cheshire cat said to Alice, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.”
So how do you develop a process that allows you to be more accurate, more effective in your search for talent? Here are a few tips:
Assemble an interview team of Subject Matter Experts (SME’s). A Subject Matter Expert is defined as someone who’s in the role, has been in the role, has managed the role, or someone who is impacted by the role. Three to five SME’s is a good place to start.
Define Key Accountabilities for the role. With your team of SME’s, define the job. Why does this role exist? What are the desired outcomes for someone in the role and by when? (Hint, it’s more than ‘make your quota’) What does the new hire have to do to be successful in the role?
Define each SME’s role in the interviewing process. Define what information you want each interviewer to extract. Pick one of the Key Accountabilities, per SME, and have them prepare their interview around that Key Accountability.
Define WHO makes the final go, no-go decision on the candidate. Consensus hiring creates confusion and can potentially eliminate a quality person based on the ‘likability’ factor of each of the interviewers. The new hire is your responsibility. Gather feedback from other team members and then YOU make the final decision.
Consider job matching technology. Job matching combines technology with the behavioral sciences to give you a clear picture of How, Why and Can; ‘How’ they will accomplish the work, ‘Why’ they work, what drives them, and ‘Can’ they do the work – do they possess the skills needed to succeed in the role?
If you’re still relying, solely on your skills as an interviewer and a candidates resume, how effective can you be?
Sure, you can make a hire, but will you be repeating this process next year? Will you get the results you need from the person in the role? Do you have the time to interview unqualified applicants? The goal is to benchmark the job and then compare talent to the benchmark. This is far more effective than benchmarking candidates. If the job could talk, it would tell you what it needs for success. Give the job a voice!
Hiring talented people is a business process and should be treated that way. Try some of the tips listed above and eliminate wasted effort. You’ll hire more accurately and, in less time! If you’d like more information on hiring more accurately, connect with us! We’d be delighted to have a conversation.