Hiring or Being Hired … five HUGE mistakes!

Hiring and InterviewingLet’s admit right up-front that hiring is tough and being hired is equally as tough. The hiring process is time-consuming and arduous for job candidates and employers.

Here are five concerns that should not happen during the hiring process:

1. Already Having an Internal Candidate in Mind
Some organizations have a policy that every job opening has to involve interviewing internal candidates. There is often a policy that allows the job opening to be concurrently advertised to the public. This could lead to an unintended consequence. The employer may actually have an internal candidate in mind or have decided that only an external candidate will be hired. I understand that companies and organizations want to find and hire the best person. The Problem: Whether you are hiring or being hired, we must not trifle with people’s time and expectations.

2. Delayed Notification of Outcome
Waiting weeks for an answer is bad even if the answer is that you got the job. However, it is possibly devastating when you find out that, after all the waiting, you don’t have the job.

In some companies and organizations, the decision-makers may strive for surgical precision in the process. Understandably, they want the best person and they also don’t want to waste money with a bad hire. However, everyone considers one of these reasons for delays: The employer is waiting to see how their first choice works out before they let the others off the hook completely; or the hiring decision process is cumbersome and lengthy.

3. Failure to Timely Notify of Selection or Non-selection
If a job candidate doesn’t hear from a company at all, he or she knows they don’t have the job. But it’s still disappointing and disconcerting not to hear anything. Is this just laziness or rudeness?

I understand that an employer may want to avoid an unpleasant experience. After all, it’s not a lot of fun breaking that kind of news to someone. Often, employers are concerned that detailing why a candidate didn’t get the job, could lead to legal action. One solution is to send out a general notice like: “Thank you for showing interest in the (POSITION) with (COMPANY). This letter is to let you know that we have identified our finalist and will not be moving forward with your candidacy. Thank you for considering our organization”

4. Vague and Misleading Job Descriptions
My review of some “want-ads” suggest that some companies use a boilerplate job description and just add a fee specific terms or requirements. In the long-run, it would save a lot of time if they would just come right out and be specific. For example, instead of saying you’re seeking someone who has “experience with C++ programming or object-oriented JavaScript,” Be specific: “Extensive knowledge of DOM scripting with native JavaScript and familiarity with JS frameworks such as jQuery or Mootools.” Don’t use, “Experience with…” which is perhaps the vaguest, and most open to interpretation, phrase possibly. Avoid it.

5. Lengthy Interview Process
Is your company’s interview process too long? Some positions require interviews with executives or senior management and can be lengthy. What I am really addressing is whether a process includes fifth or sixth interviews. For the candidate who actually gets the job in the end, this may be forgivable. But for the candidates who go through that long process only to be told they don’t have the job, it’s confusing and makes them question everything about themselves.

Companies that seek perfection must realize that there are some people who are just extremely good at interviewing and not doing the actual job. So, putting candidates through a process longer and more arduous than following “The Walking Dead” to ensure that you have found the perfect person, unfortunately, does not always end that way.

Hiring is important and you should try to find the best candidate for a position. But there are things that you should and should not do to make the process easier for those who are hiring or being hires.

Related Articles:  Job Applicants Hate This …  and   Interviewing … Egads!!

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James E. McClain is the author of Successful Career Development: A Game Plan, the book upon which some of our training programs are based. He has over 30 years' experience as a corporate HR executive, small business owner with ongoing experience in career development and as a college instructor. His educational background includes a B.S. and Masters degrees Education and Certification in Financial Planning. Our promise is that "you can pay more for training but you can not buy better training." The mission is to deliver the most effective and cost effective training and development programs.

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