The 5 Most Costly Hiring Mistakes

You’re thinking about buying a house.  You know what you need and the price you’re willing to pay for it. Of course, you’ve done very little market research, are looking for something very specific and have only three days, but surely…

We wouldn’t buy a house this way, but this analogy offers us a glimpse into some of the most common and costly hiring mistakes. To avoid compromising your hiring process, read on.

Hiring Mistakes and What to Do
Mistake 1: The Unicorn
If you’re overly specific about what you want and you couple it with an unwillingness to pay for it, you have committed two of the most common hiring mistakes.

Solution:  Sit down with relevant stakeholders.  Take a bit of time to decide on the “must haves” for the role and where you’re willing to compromise.  Do a bit of market research on what is reasonable compensation for the position and then make sure you have the budget for it.

Mistake 2:  The Psychic
There’s nothing wrong with intuition. As Malcolm Gladwell points out in Blink intuition is the result of past experience being stored in our subconscious and manifesting as a hunch. But trusting your intuition solely in the hiring process can lead to making hiring decisions based on likeability, while ignoring more important criteria.

Solution: Create a scorecard that lists the different skills for the role. Ensure you include soft skills like collaborative communication and resilience. Why? Because this research, shows that those two soft skills are critical in determining the success of the hire.  As a side note, the scorecard has the advantage of injecting objectivity into the hiring process, and gets everyone on the same page before the interview even starts. The result is a more streamlined hiring process that helps everyone agree on a candidate more efficiently.

For more information on how psychological hiring bias can be the enemy at the hiring gates, read this report.

Mistake 3: Not Engaging the Line Manager
HR is responsible for keeping a lot of organization balls in the air and they’re good at it, but not having the line manager closely involved in the hiring process is a recipe for disaster.

Solution:  Engage the line manager actively. Better yet, if you’re working with a recruiting company, give them direct access to the line manager.  After all, who knows what the department needs more than the person running it.

Mistake 4: Selection Bias
When you use job boards you create selection bias. That is, you are limiting yourself to the candidates that see the ad and choose to respond.

Solution:  Access passive job seekers. Passive job seekers are willing to transition if the right role comes along.  Look at LinkedIn – it’s a virtual treasure trove of passive job seekers. Caveat:  It’s much easier to encourage someone to join your team if you already have a relationship with them, or if someone you trust has a relationship with them, so leverage your network, your team, or get a recruiter on board who specializes in the finance and accounting industry.

Mistake 5: Experience is Everything
If you’re hiring a contractor, then yes, you need him/her to ramp up quickly so experience is critical to the success of the hire. But in permanent roles, prioritizing experience above all else and disregarding transferrable skills is done at your own peril.

Solution: Consider a candidate’s transferrable skills if they lack industry based experience.  Do they show leadership potential? Does the resume demonstrate an ability to achieve goals under tight timelines? Great. It might be worth meeting with them in person.

Key Takeaways
Hiring mistakes can be quite costly. Avoid chasing the mythical unicorn (there’s a reason they’re a myth).  Sit down with the relevant stakeholders and create a scorecard for use during the interview. You’ll build consensus and inject objectivity into the process. Consider transferrable skills and passive job seekers.  Fundamentally, you want to hire well the first time, not make a costly hiring mistake.

Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone. At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment. Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.

Clarity Recruitment, connecting exceptional people with remarkable companies.