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No recruitment and selection process policy? Draft one now.

November 19, 2018

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No recruitment and selection process policy? Draft one now.

9 min read

Many regard the recruitment and selection processes as peripheral to core business functions, but that’s a misconception. It’s one of the most important functions in any organization, no matter the size or type of business. Hiring the right candidates to maintain the success of any business is crucial. And the work that goes into selecting your future employees is at the heart of success.

This means that you should always have a pipeline of potential candidates to accommodate restructuring, expansion, resignations, and retirements. This is where a solid recruitment and selection process policy with some strategy will come in handy.

What is a recruitment and selection process?

A recruitment and selection process, collectively, are the steps that any team or business takes to attract, qualify, and ultimately hire new employees. For every business and every role, this process will look different. However, having certain policies in place will help standardize these processes to ensure the best caliber of talent is reviewed.

Traditionally, there are 7 steps in a recruitment and selection process.

  1. Recruiting internally: Many organizations choose to advertise their vacancy internally, before posting to any external sources. Internal recruitment can be a great talent source for larger businesses with employees looking for internal mobility.
  2. Recruiting externally: After advertising internally, the job usually goes live across a number of paid and free job boards and candidate channels. The listing will usually be kept live as candidates are qualified by the recruitment team.
  3. Screening applications: The set recruitment team will review candidate applications as they come through their portal or ATS. Traditionally, the recruiter will select candidates to move forward in the process based on qualities agreed with the hiring manager. Those who do not make the cut will be informed that they have not made it further.
  4. Phone or video screening: The recruiter will arrange a phone or video screening with candidates who fit the initial qualifications. A further selection will be made at this point to determine which candidates will move on in the process to meet the hiring manager or team.
  5. Selection tests: Job trials, psychometric tests for recruitment, and other selection tests are not uncommon in many selection processes. These usually help test the skill level, experience, and cultural fit of a candidate to help narrow the selection of candidates.
  6. In-person interview: Many processes include one or more in-person interviews with candidates. These are usually held with the hiring manager or team and are coordinated by the recruiter.
  7. Reference checks: Reference checks should be a standard last step in any recruitment process. These help the decisionmakers verify the candidates’ skill and experience to avoid fraud and ensure the quality of hire.

With so many recruitment process steps and a degree of customization across businesses, it’s important for teams to develop policies around their recruitment and candidate selection. Companies usually develop policies around each of these steps in the recruitment process to establish consistency and ensure all candidates are assessed equally.

Below we will discuss a couple of guiding principles that should be followed when developing your own recruitment process steps and drafting policies.

Candidate pipeline should be central to your recruitment strategy

Without a candidate pipeline, your business can run into trouble when it comes to new hires. This is a result of two global hiring trends:

  1. People are changing jobs more often: According to US statistics dated January 2018, the average time that employees spent in their current job was 4.2 years. Millennials are also not following in their parent’s footsteps; statistics show that workers aged 25 to 34 only clock 2.8 years with an employer before moving on. Whereas workers aged 55 to 64 stayed in the same job for an average of 10.1 years That’s because younger workers’ expectations have changed and they’re no longer motivated by job security. They’re more focused on a quality work/life balance.  
  2. The global talent shortage is growing: In fact, it’s at a 12 year high with 45% of employers globally saying they can’t find the skills they need. Any job that’s critical to a business’s success that stays open for any length of time is going to have a negative impact. Not only financially, but on the morale of existing staff.

It’s clear to see how these trends can impact your business. Without a recruitment strategy in place that takes a candidate pipeline into consideration, you can’t build a talent pool of value to your business.

Building a talent pool takes time and dedication. An applicant that’s unsuitable for a current vacancy could turn out to be the perfect fit for another vacancy that comes up in a few months’ time. If you’re using manual systems like a spreadsheet shortlist, your calendar, and hard copy CV’s during interviews only, how will you find that candidate again?

The truth is that you probably won’t be able to trace that application again. Which means you’ll have to start the whole recruitment process from scratch. Worse still, you could’ve lost a great candidate who has already expressed interest in working with your company.

To avoid these oversights, review the steps of your recruitment process to help you adapt to these trends.

A recruitment and selection process strategy eliminates hapless hiring decisions

Without strategy and policy in place when it comes to the steps in your recruitment process, many hiring managers fall back on bad habits and end up making poor hiring decisions. Hiring on gut feel, not doing pre-employment reference checks or failing to conduct assessments are all common mistakes that can have dire consequences.

Just as hiring the right candidate can grow your business, so hiring the wrong candidate can spell bad news for both you and the candidate. An inexperienced candidate can become a burden to other staff, even if their intentions are good. You can fix this with additional training. But if you weren’t prepared for a bad hire, it will certainly dent your budget and productivity. And if the candidate leaves under negative circumstances, it could impact their confidence and their professional reputation.

Or you could employ someone who’s disruptive for one of many reasons. This will negatively impact colleagues, customers, your budget and your bottom line. Disruptive employees aren’t necessarily loud and disorderly, so their behavior isn’t easy to spot early on. Passive aggression, laziness, and tardiness all take their toll. The cost of a toxic hire can have long-lasting consequences.

Whatever the reason for having to start the recruitment process from scratch, it’s always a costly, time-consuming, and unnecessary exercise.

A well-structured selection process policy will help you implement steps that must be followed before any candidate is employed. This will prevent your team from spending too much time on unsuitable candidates. It also allows you to manage your hiring better and identify existing flaws.

An ATS can simplify your recruitment and selection process policies

There are countless steps that could go into any recruitment and selection process policy. But depending on the type of business, there are core requirements that aren’t negotiable.

By investing in an ATS early, these core steps are already set up for you and your hiring team. An ATS brings your whole recruitment selection process into a single space to be accessed by the whole team in real time. And it’s not just a massive time-saver! It also allows you to optimize your recruitment selection process to meet the specific needs of your business environment.

Not all hiring managers are familiar with the intricacies of recruitment processes and policies. Also, considering that most people trust others on face value, it’s easy to see how bad hiring decisions are made. Most bad appointments were made with the best of intentions, but subject to unintentional human miscalculation. An ATS offers you cutting-edge recruitment tools that can help prevent human error.

Implement the core steps and the rest will fall into place

You can’t have a solid recruitment process without carefully considering the recruitment and selection process policies in place. Between compiling a detailed job description and onboarding your new hire are steps that that will ensure that you hire the best talent. Apart from candidates having the skills, experience and personality traits each job requires, there are steps that are often overlooked that belong in your policy.

There’s a growing trend in candidates lying on their CV’s with statistics citing that 1 in 6 CV’s misrepresented the candidate. That’s a massive figure considering that many of these candidates will be appointed without their dishonesty being uncovered. Of course, employers will undoubtedly pay the price for their oversight in due course.

Apart from the standard skills assessments, taking references, and qualifying verifications, there are other things you shouldn’t overlook.

Your selection process policy should also include a standardized collection of:

  • Identity, work permit or passport verification
  • Criminal or police clearance
  • Driver’s license verification if the job includes driving for business purposes
  • Drug tests, particularly if the job includes using machinery or driving a vehicle

These are things that hiring managers often don’t even think of when they’re conducting interviews. You can often get away with hiring without background checks, but the day will inevitably come when you’ll have to face the consequences. If a candidate is lying about anything, the company could be held liable in lawsuits. Your company may even be responsible for damages.

This type of oversight has the potential to negatively impact your business!

Employees can found guilty of a number of wrongs. Including fraud, driving without a license, or working under the influence. These type of infringements attract third-party liability claims that could run into millions. Not to mention the damage done to your brand once word gets out.

Solidify your recruitment strategy and selection process

No business, multinational, or start-up, can afford to employ anyone who’ll endanger the safety of anyone else, or who’ll damage the business brand and reputation. That’s what makes a comprehensive recruitment selection process and the policies surrounding it so important. Additionally, bias in the hiring process is a well-known phenomenon. Policies around the selection process assist in eliminating the impact of bias.

Having a non-negotiable recruitment and selection process written into your company policies and procedures means that no one can deviate from the process without consequences. Implementing a recruitment selection process via an ATS reinforces the rules. An ATS brings every step into real time. Everything’s simplified, accessible and you can track and manage all the steps with ease.

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Bev has enthusiastically worked to match top employers and candidates for almost twenty years. An endless curiosity of the human mind, HR tech development, how to help people reach their goals and the ever-evolving hiring landscape is what keeps her fired up.
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