Recruitment is becoming increasingly complex, with tech recruitment being particularly challenging. The report on Talent Trends in India by E&Y highlights that filling positions is still a significant challenge. Senior positions sometimes take more than 6 months to fill and 75% of all positions take longer than 2 months to fill.
In this article, we will talk about some of the most common tech recruitment mistakes that lead to bad hires or positions lying vacant for long periods of time, along with solutions for the same.
Are you making these tech recruitment mistakes?
Not defining the job profile clearly
The top two reasons for a bad hire include a poor skills match and unclear performance objectives. These occur when the skills and experience requirements for the job are not clearly defined. While the hiring manager may have a clear idea of the skills required to do the job, if they are not outlined clearly in the job profile, the recruiter will not be able to able to find the right person who possesses those skills required for the job.
The job profile including the skills, KPIs and performance objectives must be clearly defined from the onset. These must be clearly communicated to the recruiter without any underlying assumptions and ambiguity.
Not speaking the same language
Non-technical recruiters speaking to technical candidates are humans trying to speak Klingon. Being unfamiliar with technical jargon and terminology, it is difficult for these recruiters to gauge the talent and experience of technical candidates.
It is crucial that you partner with specialized recruiters who know the domain and can have a meaningful dialogue with candidates to accurately evaluate their skills.
Not targeting passive candidates
Passive candidates are those who are not actively looking for opportunities to move but are open to doing so when presented with the right opportunity. The right person for the job might not be looking, and you will miss out on this candidate if you do not have a strategy to engage him/her. In this era of information overload when candidates are being hit with communication from all sides, if the information is not targeted to attract these passive candidates, they will tune it out and will never be motivated to apply for a position.
Create an outreach strategy to attract passive talent in your industry. There are many ways of doing this, including proactively reaching out to candidates with desired skills before the need arises, using social media to promote the company and engage with potential hires, using current employees as advocates to tap into their networks, and many more.
Not employing a well-designed engagement strategy
The following are some of the signs that you do not have an effective engagement strategy in place:
- Emails about job openings (usually templatized) return with candidate profiles that rarely match the requirements
- Open positions take too long to close
- Candidates who were once interviewed have accepted other roles
Create an engagement strategy which caters to every step of the recruitment process. This means that candidates who have applied for job postings, candidates who are currently under consideration, and the ones who are rejected should receive communication that lets them know of the status and next steps in the process. This will ensure that the potential hires are engaged and don’t lose interest and move on to other opportunities. If you use multiple recruiters, ensure that a candidate does not receive the same information from multiple sources.
Not taking enough time to hire
This is probably one of the biggest and perhaps the most inevitable mistakes companies make. Too often hiring managers are in a hurry to close the position. That combined with the fact that recruitment isn’t a priority or a specialty for most hiring managers, organizations end up with bad hires. It is estimated that a hire that doesn’t work out usually costs at least 30 percent of the employee’s first-year earnings. Hiring on tight deadlines should be avoided and adequate time needs to be taken to assess candidates.
Instead of hiring reactively, create a “skill-bank” or a ready list of professionals proactively that can be tapped into when a requirement comes up.
Not leveraging referrals
Referrals are a great way to attract high-quality applicants in the least amount of time. Companies skip some of the first stages of assessment as they tend to go with their employees’ endorsement, cutting the overall recruitment cycle time by 15-20 percent. The conversion and retention rates of hires through referrals is also much greater than traditional hires. Not leveraging referrals means one misses out on an opportunity to utilize employees as brand advocates and their networks to fill positions in the company.
If there isn’t one already, start an employee referral program and encourage employees to refer exceptional candidates in their networks. To reduce instances of spam, the type of skills and expectations from candidates can be outlined. Utilize social media channels like LinkedIn so professionals from your company get a chance to connect and build their network.
There are many red flags which might indicate that your recruitment efforts need to be revamped. If positions seem to be lying vacant for long durations, or attrition is increasing in a certain role, you might need to examine the situation carefully to see if it is due to any of the aforementioned causes.