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It's Taking Longer Than Ever to Hire: How to Streamline the Process

December 27, 2017

No candidate being considered for a new job enjoys a cumbersome, dragged-out interview process. Making candidates jump through too many hoops is not only frustrating for them but can also jeopardize your ability to attract top talent. According to a new study by Glassdoor, the average hiring time from start to finish of the interview process has continued to rise. In 2014, there was an average of 22.9 days between the first interview and a job offer; that gap increased to 23.8 days in the first half of 2017. While it is important not to compromise candidate quality for speed, lengthy hiring practices can be costly.

The time a candidate spends enduring several rounds of interviews and performing non-job-related assessments is time she could spend as an employee helping to improve your organization. A lengthy hiring process may also provide your competitors the opportunity to hire away top talent. So how can you streamline your interview process to achieve faster, more efficient hiring? Here are some tips.

Create an accurate job description

The first step toward streamlining your interview process is to ensure that you have an accurate job description that serves as a realistic preview for the role. Outline any mandatory qualifications up front, and ensure that all requirements are directly related to the tasks the new hire will be performing. Base your interview questions on the contents of the job description, and refer back to the job description when you determine which candidate to hire.

Use technology

Prescreening through online assessments can be effective in sourcing qualified candidates from your applicant pool before moving forward with interviews. Some hiring assessments can rank candidates based on the responses that most match your criteria. Make sure the assessment is validated for selection purposes.

In-person interviews can be difficult to coordinate. Consider using video conferencing in place of some in-person interviews when you can.

Be transparent

Be transparent, and treat candidates with respect. Candidates can become frustrated by a long interview process if they don’t know their status. Be up front about how you will be in touch with candidates to ensure smooth and efficient communication throughout the process.

Structure your interviews

Part of streamlining your interview process is creating a consistent structure. All candidates should be subjected to the same selection processes. That will also ensure equal opportunity in the hiring process.

First, identify the most important determinants for your open position. Select who should be involved in the decision process. Before the recruiting process begins, decide which mediums you will use and how many rounds of interviews candidates should have.

Remember that less can be more. Reconsider lengthy assessments if they aren’t related to duties the new hire will perform. Finally, create a standardized evaluation process to reduce any deadlock and potential bias in your decision making.

Don’t hesitate on your final decision

There is no perfect number of candidates who must be reviewed before you make a hiring decision. Once you and your team are confident that you’ve found the candidate who meets your skill and experience requirements and is an organizational fit, don’t hesitate to hire him. When you decide to offer the candidate the job, get in contact promptly and stay in touch throughout the offer and onboarding process.

Bottom line

You don’t need to compromise quality hiring practices to have an efficient hiring process. Having a streamlined interview process will not only help you fill your openings more efficiently but will also improve candidates’ experience and strengthen your brand as an employer.