It’s no surprise that hiring is difficult. Mixing together qualifications, urgency to fill, culture fit, budget, etc. etc. etc. it becomes a very complex and frankly crazy process sometimes.
As a hiring manager or company owner, there’s a good chance you’ve had difficulty filling a job (or several) and at some point, you probably had a moment where you literally just thought “WHY IS THIS SO HARD?”
It’s one thing if you’ve been working on a job for a few weeks or a month, but once you start racking up 2…3….4 months into the search, it’s time to start looking internally and see if there’s something you can control.
To get your train of thought moving, here are a few common hurdles that make the hiring process more difficult:
Interview process takes too long
We’ve gone over this before but honestly this is such an issue that it bares repeating. You have to balance being thorough with maintaining a sense of urgency. Whether you are aware or not, every candidate you interview is volatile in one way or another. They might be interviewing elsewhere, waiting on a promotion, or just not actively searching. You have a very small window of opportunity to secure an exceptional candidate and get them onboard with YOUR team. Do what you can to simplify and consolidate your interview process where possible to avoid them slipping away.
The role is not clear
Far too often, companies start with the “idea” of what job they need filled, what the responsibilities and requirements are, and ultimately pivot during the interview process. While this is natural and common for a lot of roles, especially at startups, it can cause hiccups in the candidate search. Make sure you meet with your internal team to solidify what is NOT currently getting done and what gaps need to be filled with this new position. And please, oh please, do not put five jobs into one. You’re basically shooting yourself in the foot and making the search THAT much more difficult.
Feedback is not timely
Timely feedback is ESSENTIAL to getting a candidate through the process and hired. If your team takes a week to get together and talk about a candidate, well, you need to make time. When you decide you hire, you are responsible for setting expectations. That means setting aside enough free time to interview, connect on feedback, and make decisions quickly. If a candidate is out, let them know so they don’t sit in purgatory. If you want to move forward with someone, schedule next steps almost immediately to show your interest and that you are serious.
Feedback is also extremely relevant when it comes to partnering with a staffing firm. Ultimately, our whole process of searching for candidates relies on your feedback and insight about the position. If things change or if you even liked a candidate that was sent, let us know! That way, we can continue down the correct track in our search.
Salary is not flexible
You should not be losing quality candidates over salary. Yes, of course if it’s way out of left field or twice the intended compensation, it’s not the right opportunity. But WAY too often, companies lose amazing people because of a slight salary difference. If you see value in someone that you interview, figure out a way to get them on your team; simple as that. The whole point of this article is to talk about how difficult hiring is, so if you find someone that stands out, don’t stand in the way of them getting hired! Do they need $5,000 more the feel confident in a move? Try and make it happen. If not, see if you can put together a compensation structure that could help supplement deficiencies elsewhere.
You are too picky
This is THE most common roadblock to hiring. I can sympathize with wanting A++ people on your team, I really do. And there’s nothing worse than growing a company too quickly that your team’s quality declines. However, you can NOT let your quest for perfection inhibit you from bringing on people that would enhance your business. Simon Senek said, “You don’t hire for skills, you hire for attitude. You can always teach skills.” If a candidate is missing 1-2 of the skills listed on your already loaded job description, you better lock them up before they escape. Unless it’s a legal non-negotiable, like a certification, or possibly a skill that is highly exclusive for the job, almost everything else can be picked up or polished once on the job. Find someone that is driven, a good fit for the company and has 90+% of what you’re looking for. The rest will fall into place and you’ll be surprised by how much they impress you.
The point here is hiring is not easy for anyone. Candidate pools are shrinking, employees are becoming more discerning about what jobs they take, and the skills gap is growing. Chances are if you look at this list, you will see at least one point that you could attend to a bit more.
If you do find yourself struggling to scale or have questions about hiring practices, reach out to our team – We have a passion for not only finding candidates that suit your needs, but also consulting on the best business practices and hiring moves based on where your company is at.