How to Avoid a Bad Hire

Here at V.I.Personnel, we want to make sure you know how to avoid a bad hire and how to acquire real talent. The hiring process can be a mine field, there are so many angles to cover to ensure that you recruit only the best employees for your business.

Selecting the very best candidates is one of greatest challenges for hiring managers. Get it right and a new employee can have a positive and immediate impact to the business; get it wrong and the financial and reputational costs can be colossal. In the ever-changing employment scene what are the essential steps to creating a truly reliable recruitment process and what measures can be put in place to avoid a bad hire?


If You Think it’s Expensive to Hire a Professional, Wait Until You Hire an Amateur!

The truth is that a bad hiring decision can result in a number of painful and costly outcomes, and some of those can be much harder to put a price on than others. Some of the following could be a result of bad recruitment;

  • Damaged employee relations and morale
  • Public scandals and negative publicity
  • Attrition and wasted hiring budgets
  • Endangerment of employees, clients and business associates
  • Lost Productivity
  • Litigation

Although these may seem like extreme examples, they are all damaging to the company. To avoid this being the case, recruit right the first time.

According to the CIPD the average recruitment cost of filling a vacancy is £4,000, increasing to £6,125 when the associated labour turnover costs are included. For a senior manager role, these figures rise to £10,000 and £9,000, respectively, and if things fail to work out first time around you can expect to double these for the cost of rehiring once again.


How to avoid a bad Hire I hear you ask?

Here are a few tips that should help you cover all bases when hiring.

As an employer, the single most important thing to remember when recruiting is; if you don’t have the time to do it, don’t rush it. The recruitment process takes time and preparation, rushing it will only ever result in hiring the wrong candidate. After all, there is more to it than just conducting interviews. The selection process prior to interviews can take many hours in itself, shortlisting the hundreds of applications and sifting through CV’s looking for the right experience and qualities is a huge task, consider outsourcing this at all costs.

Make sure to check out: Choosing the right Recruitment Agency for help with this.

Understand the requirements of the role. Conduct a thorough job analysis to uncover the key competencies for the role. From this, create a detailed job description. This is normally the first thing an applicant will see. If the job description is too generic and lacks detail, you will attract more CV’s without doubt, however this also means you will have to take more time to sift through applications and many will not be suitable. Instead, create a detailed description that will attract only the most eager and experienced candidates, thus also narrowing your search.

What calibre of candidate are you looking for? Will “candidate A” be better at the job than “candidate B”? This is measured on experience and representation and is best spotted at interview stage.  Although an impressive CV can go a long way, I’ve found that there are many candidates with fantastic CV’s but fail to deliver in an interview.  On the flip side, I’ve interviewed candidates that flourish in an interview but fail to demonstrate their ability on their CV. The typical case of “Never judge a book by its cover”.

With concerns rising over a skills shortage in the UK it is even more important that your business stands out to qualified, talented candidates. Whether you’re launching a recruitment drive, hiring for a senior level position or looking for entry-level graduates you will want to attract top calibre candidates each and every time. You want them to be qualified for the role, with the right experience and the right soft skills for your business.

Show the realities of the job.  Give potential applicants an honest account of what the job will entail by using realistic job previews (RJPs). RJPs can take the form of videos, testimonials or short tests. Regardless of format, effective RJPs accurately foreshadow the culture that the candidate is signing up for. Subsequently, candidates are much less likely to leave during their employment.

Implement psychometric assessments. The benefit of this approach is that you can assess key competencies and hone in on a candidate’s behavioural tendencies in a more engaging and realistic way. These tests take 15-20 minutes to complete. They can be undertaken prior to any interview stage of the selection process and the results can be integrated with your applicant tracking system.

Provide a consistent, friendly and engaging candidate experience. It is important to provide candidates with a positive recruitment experience, regardless of whether or not you offer them a job. Your applicants could be current or potential customers.