6 Steps to Better Employee Selection

by Chris Young

6 steps to better employee selection resized 600There are few areas of your business model that are as impactful as who you hire - especially when hiring key positions such as management and sales.

Over the last dozen years of partnering with large and small business, I have found that most organizations have a significant need to enhance their employee selection process.  

I encourage those I serve to view their employee selection process as a continuous work in progress - always room for improvement.

Following are 6 steps to better employee selection:

Step 1: Commit to hiring the best talent possible - every time. Committed managers do whatever it takes...  They commit to carefully hiring the very best talent possible.  They commit to studying the performance difference between top and bottom talent.  Committed managers do not rush the employee selection process because they know the costs of getting it wrong are high.  

Step 2: Do not rush the employee selection process. All too often I see a sales manager who is tired of hiring low performing sales people who says, "I am tired of the headaches.  I will do what it takes - I will wait until all steps are taken and the right candidate is found."  Then they need a sales person next week and they rush the employee selection process.  Within weeks, they regret rushing the process because the new hire is not the ideal candidate.  Take the time necessary to hire the best possible talent.

Step 3: Partner With Stakeholders. As a manager, it is your job to get results.  The best possible talent will help you get there.  Identifying and hiring the best possible talent requires partnership and the most important partnership is with HR. I have a "love-hate relationship" with HR.  Some HR professionals are incredibly intelligent and some are incredibly...  less intelligent. Whether your HR person is brilliant or not - you need to partner with them.  You cannot do it alone nor can you work against them.  You need HR and/or at least an external recruitment firm to help you with the employee selection process.

Step 4: Use a Job Benchmark with a valid pre-employment personality assessment.  There is a powerful way to ensure the needs of the job are met - match the talent to the job. The challenge to doing this is human beings are unable to identify whether or not the candidate is fit for the job during the interview.  The only way to identify these aspects is using a valid pre-employment personality assessment.

Step 5: Use Structured Interviews. Over the last dozen years, I have seen a lot of interesting and scary practices when it comes to interviewing.  Most people have no idea how to interview.  The result is the right questions do not get asked while the wrong questions often are asked. Furthermore, human bias is alive and flourishing in the traditional interview process.  By using a structured interview process - where the same questions are asked and scored for each candidate, human bias is reduced.  Using a panel group in combination with the structured interview is a great way to reduce bias during the hiring process.

Step 6: Use a Hiring Scorecard. An additional way to improve employee selection is through the use of a hiring scorecard.  A hiring scorecard assigns points based upon key criteria being met or not met.  The result is a more consistent approach to your hiring process and a better hiring outcome.

The future of your business is determined by who you hire.  Commit to hiring only the best possible talent.  Ultimately, the decision is yours to make.