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7 Mistakes Hiring Managers Make When Recruiting – And How to Avoid Them

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The current job market is most certainly a candidate’s world. With up to 450,000 UK vacancies between July and September 2022, applicants can be much more selective when taking up a new role.

To attract the best talent, hiring managers need to be conscious that the recruitment process is no longer just about a candidate selling their skills to an employer – an employer must now appeal to a candidate, too.

So, what can you do to make sure you’re getting it right at every step of the hiring journey?

Here, we’ve outlined seven of the most common mistakes hiring managers make, and shared our tips on how to avoid them.

1. Not adapting the recruitment process

A hiring manager can’t afford not to be switched on to what’s happening in the wider market, and it’s no secret that the past few years have turned the hiring landscape on its head.

As a result, your recruitment process should be flexible and agile. Not only will this show that you’re aware of candidates’ needs, it will also help you stand out from the crowd.

To demonstrate flexibility in your hiring, consider the option of video or in-person interviews. Remote interviews were the method of choice during the pandemic, and have since become part of the ‘new normal’. But letting candidates choose which type of interview they prefer will get your recruitment off to a great start.

Larger organisations may struggle when making such adaptations, as they often have much more rigid hiring practices and so can’t adapt to a candidate’s requirements as quickly or as easily – but this doesn’t mean you should write it off. Remember, small changes can make a big difference.

2. Lacking clear job briefs

We’ll admit that advising you to create accurate job descriptions seems pretty obvious – but you’d be surprised by the number of hiring managers that miss this simple step.

If you don’t make it clear to candidates (and recruiters) what the role you’re hiring for entails, the responsibilities involved, and the opportunities available, you could end up with a list of CVs or applications that just aren’t what you’re looking for. 

Additionally, lacking clear information in job descriptions can put good candidates off, as they may feel unsure of what will be expected of them. It can look unprofessional too – after all, if you haven’t made the effort, why should a candidate?

3. Engaging multiple recruitment suppliers

When hiring managers enlist numerous recruitment agencies to fill a specific role, it can lead to various issues – one of which is a reduced service that’s driven by speed over quality.

The recruiter who submits a candidate’s CV first is granted the right to represent the individual, and qualify for a fee if they’re successful. This means that applicants who apply faster can be prioritised over talent.

On top of this, multiple recruiters may approach the same person for the same role, giving off a negative perception of the company to potential candidates.

The best way to combat these issues is to prioritise quality over quantity, selecting and working with one or two high-quality recruitment partners who are fully engaged.

4. Failing to personalise the process

Nowadays, hiring an employee is like courting. Your job is to impress a candidate just as much as they impress you. Fail to do so, and any offer you make may be rejected in favour of another company.

That’s why personalising the hiring process is key. Understand what candidates are searching for and what makes them tick, then use this information to your advantage.

For example, if your ideal candidate is looking for hybrid working opportunities, and this is something you can offer, make sure you sell this point to them during the interview so they know you can fulfil their wants and needs.

And remember, it’s not enough to assume that everyone wants to work with you or for you. Showcase the best of your business and highlight why it’s somewhere that people want to work.

As a company or organisation, your aim is to have candidates walk away from their first interview thinking this is the place to be.

5. Getting the questions wrong

Hiring managers who fail to ask the right questions, whether technical or otherwise, are unknowingly damaging their own recruitment process.

It’s not enough to run through a list of basic recruiting questions – to find talent that really fits the bill, you need to dig a little deeper. It’s all about uncovering how the candidate works and what they’ll bring to your organisation.

Consider asking the following questions in your interviews:

●      How would you work with a difficult client?

●      What would you do if you didn’t agree with your manager’s feedback?

●      How would you handle multiple deadlines at once?

●      What resources would you use if you encountered something you didn’t know or understand?

Likewise, leave no stone unturned when it comes to checking references. Candidates expect to be asked for these, so if you don’t follow the proper procedure, it can be a red flag.

6. Slow-moving processes

There are an abundance of job opportunities in the current market, which means candidates have the upper hand.

As a result, time is of the essence for recruiters and hiring managers to pin down top talent before it gets snapped up elsewhere.

Ultimately, a slow-moving hiring process could be the difference between securing your ideal candidate, or losing them to another business.

7. Onboarding that doesn’t quite cut it

Many hiring managers are guilty of dropping the ball once a job offer has been accepted. But if anything, this is the time where your work really begins.

Dropout rates tend to be higher once an individual has accepted an offer. In fact, in June 2022, it was found that 44% of candidates backed out after accepting a role.

This could be down to poor communication and delayed job formalisation, failing to answer questions, or not delivering an adequate induction programme. Whatever the reason, it’s likely that a candidate will accept a counter offer from their current employer if they don’t feel the new role is right for them.

Simplify the recruitment process with WRS

WRS is committed to supporting companies and organisations with permanent recruitment solutions.

Our dedicated team will source top talent with the skills to meet your job criteria, and an attitude that matches your company’s ethos. Plus, we guarantee to comply with any legal requirements of your jurisdiction.

Ready to eliminate the risk of making common hiring mistakes? Get in touch today.