Time Consuming Hiring decisions

Recruiters/hiring managers will agree that sometimes hiring decisions take more time than usual.Time - Consuming Hiring Decisions
There might be multiple factors behind it because companies today are more cautious than before, perhaps because of the present economic condition. Therefore, it compels companies to do comprehensive assessment of candidate’s aptitude and attitude. Moreover, background verification, cost benefit analysis etc are also essential factors to be considered before finalizing any candidate.
Besides, delays can also occur when a growing company wants to broaden its horizons; HR faces a challenging situation to make the required resources available at the right time. Hence it puts them under a lot pressure to identify and shortlist candidates on various technologies (at times unique skills) at the same time when the sales team is waiting for a ‘go ahead’ from the prospective customer, which can be time consuming.
Nonetheless, regardless of what the reasons are, there is always a possibility that it can develop frustration among competent shortlisted candidates who anxiously wait for the company’s decision in this regard.
Please suggest, how can HR successfully manage this challenge? Furthermore, how can they engage these competent prospects under such circumstances thereby ensuring that the resources are available when it’s urgently required?
Would welcome your participation.


  • I do agree with the author of this article and have some suggestion by which companies make better hiring.
    ** Use alternative method of hiring, like Linkedin & Facebook to find most appropriate candidates proactively.
    ** Regularly conduct free seminars & webinars in the industry so you will get most techie people in touch directly.
    ** Have a good culture in company will make longer stays, we can use Google’s HR practices. Why people love while working with Google, although they are paying very normal salaries. Read here

  • Steve Guine TopLinked.com

    It is a fine balance keeping all the balls in the air. It is important for the hr business partner and recruiter to maintain a level of high touch and massage the relationship in order that they (HR and staffing department) are not lost in the mixture of events.
    Understanding your internal customers’ business and exactly where staffing falls on the priority list is so important (and almost a fine art). During the initial meeting to discuss the position, it is helpful to ask the hiring manager for alternates (at his/her level) who may interview in his stead so that the process continues forward.
    We must keep in mind that things happen at the most inopportune moments and we should always and continue to preach flexibility to both the hiring manager and candidates.
    It has been a best practice of mine to have the hiring manager and candidate meet off site (whenever possible) in order to really focus on the position, the candidate’s background and the hiring manager.

  • Herb Briggs

    In my experience 80% of hiring delays have just two causes:
    1) Getting the candidate onto the calendars of the managers or executives who must interview him or her, and then avoiding cancellations of the interviews because of fire-drills.
    2) Getting the hiring group together, subsequently, to create the short list, select the the candidate, and then get final approval from senior management.
    I am not sure there is any “hurrying” that can be done. It is what it it.

  • James Bupp

    I usually don’t see HR as the roadblock; most of the companies I needed to hire people, the problem was in the hiring department. Usually the problem was too many people in the hiring loop. At one company the VP engineering was approving technicians, which I thought was an overkill. Another problem I find – although I may be in the minority – is the company that wants to hire the perfect employee, the employee that matches 100% of all objectives: rather than hiring a good employee with 96% matches who has a good chance of becoming the ideal person.

  • Evien Tjabbes

    In times when the workload is smaller it is good to see people who are interested in the company so you can fill a portfolio with possible candidates that are screened and known to be competent. Following them and keeping in touch will help create a pool of potential. As soon as the amount of work increases you can start fishing in this pool. Also it is important to realize it is not necesary to have the perfect candidate. a good team with the right atmosphere can do a perfect job.

  • Dennis J Morgan

    Personally, I think HR and Recruiters need to allocate time for each client or their company and ensure they know what the company does, what they sell, and the synopsis of the product being sold. Note: I have not said they need to know how the job needs to be accomplished. That in their realm of expertise is not required, but as a hiring authority or part of the hiring mix, they should have some knowledge of what they deal with in order to present appropriately, what they have been tasked to do. Recruiters need to step back and make allocated time to the situation. I realize there is 8 hours in a day and many probably work more than that, but if you think about it recruiting is simply a sales job. I am not saying it is an easy one. Nevertheless, put yourself in a situation if you were in sales and you were trying to pick up a new customer. What would you tell the prospective client? Would you want to know a little about the products that are being sold? Would you want to know some statistics on the company you are working with?
    How do you successfully manage this challenge? Change the system. Know what you are looking for and learn the specifics. That seems to be one of the biggest downfalls you hear about in an application process, seekers will send in a resume even though they are not qualified. Hmm, well maybe the way you approached it simply states to the seeker “maybe I am qualified.” HR has job descriptions on all positions already available. If it something additional maybe HR should get with the hiring authority and sit down in a brain storming session with everyone who is involved and say ok I need to know more about this position you want to hire for, what are the specifics. What will I be looking for? What will you take, what will be the deal breakers?
    Simply stated, we are all busy and in today’s economic climate and more than ever everybody has a plate full and overflowing. We all have deadlines, we all have expectations, but we have all been taught time management, organization, best practices, change management at least to some degree. It is around us in our everyday living. If you’re going to only take something in and not do some sort of research and have a product that will attract a certain type, and sell a product to the prospect who’s searching without any knowledge, then there’s no proper way to manage.
    Like any other position, you have to be on your game. Know what is expected. Just some time to step back and analyze the situation will do more good than harm.
    This goes for hiring authorities also. Despite being bogged down with work, we all have been there. We have all stayed hours upon hours to manage and get our work accomplished, but when you have a new addition to your plate, you do not just push it off and hope for the best.
    Since companies are being more prudent at hiring, how can they not take this as a serious portion to the added serving on the plate? It has become an important factor, so just as important as it is to get out a specific job, so should the position you are hiring to fill. Again, learning and achieving good time management skills, puts even the more mediocre task in place for achievement. Surely, many has taken the class on putting things in order. A, B, C?
    Most Important-Needs to be done now, Will get done, and Not so important can be tossed or file?
    Also, get together with hire ups make suggestions; agree to have decisions made on particular positions in a given time. How can a company expect to hire the 100% match or even the 90% match if they cannot even perform the job of what they are seeking appropriately?
    Hiring for position carries the same reflection on you as it does an engineer that’s expected to get a project completed in X amount of time. It all has its place.
    Being in the hiring manager’s role, many times we’ve all felt, “Oh I really don’t want to talk to anyone today, or I really don’t want to review resumes, or this is to much time to spend on such a trivial task, HR can sum it up.”Is that how you approach a job on a project that could be fatal to your customer if you didn’t allocate time to study and understand it?
    As for as entertaining potential prospects for the just in case factor. If you are spending that much time on just in cases, should you not be spending that much time on the actual position? Learning what is needed. I don’t think finding prospects and adding them to your portfolio to be ready just in case is very lucrative if the prospect doesn’t understand your purpose and to tell people that I have a potential position for you only to find out later that they were simply placed in a possibility bin is unacceptable unless the individual you’re prospecting knows up front what is going on. If you’re doing it and later found to be lieing you’re being deceptive and it would make me leery of a company that allows such practices to prevail whether it is HR or Recruiters. If you are lying about that what else, will you lie about? It follows the same analogy you expect from the selected candidate that you are ensuring is trustworthy and a good fit.

  • Trish Cunningham

    Taking a pragmatic approach is best. In times of uncertainty, opportunity still flourishes and candidates are moving on and off the market more quickly in 2010 than in 2009. If a company finds the right professional we counsel them to move as quickly as possible. Many of our candidates are passive however once we open the door to opportunity they begin to look outside and on their own which can cause a multitude of issues for the client should they not move quickly enough. HR needs to have moxy when dealing with the internal clients not to tick anyone off but to lead their internal clients to victory with the right hire. It costs a company money to make a bad hire and it also costs a company money to have identified the right candidate only to lose the candidate to another offer due to not moving quickly enough. It’s important to keep all the cards on the table face up so everyone knows what the deal actually is and how they’ll need to own their piece of the hiring process. Once ownership is established there is a better chance of success because everyone has skin in the game. My best advice is to not hold things so close to the vest as if it’s all about your singular part of the assignment – it’s a team effort and it’s important to realize this hire is for the company!

  • Guy Battaglia

    A slippery slope. You need time to properly evaluate, collect feedback and formulate a response that leads to either the hiring or continuation of the evaluation process or more candidates need to be reviewed. HR isn’t the hold up in hiring, in my experience. Mostly, HR can execute a hire/start at a push of a button.
    In this current market, getting a candidate on board quickly is not as much of a priority then to make sure that the candidate’s ROI is measurable.
    A good hire needs to take time. It needs to accommodate an adjustment in the system, people resource and requirements for the department.
    Smaller companies can initiate starts a lot faster. Larger corporations have processes and procedures in place to make sure that they are first compliant and then successful in their acquisition.
    If the candidate, recruiters, department and HR are professional then time should not be an issue.

  • Wallace Jackson

    Candidate Background Research is our most time-consuming hiring problem.

  • Jay Nwachu

    What is considered ‘time consuming’ can be pretty subjective. Some companies depending on the nature of the jobs, their contractual commitments need to go through different loops to hire someone. Some can hire someone with just a simple reference check while some need extensive background checks.
    I think HR departments (including recruiters) should serve more as a consultant to the hiring departments and help the hiring departments understand the process from sourcing to placement and the role that the hiring department plays into that.
    If both groups come up with an agreeable time frame for hiring and put it in writing (can vary by unit, job, level on company org chart etc), then everyone can be on the same page and applicants can be informed at the 1st interview of a more realistic time frame.
    Of course, we are all human and sometimes unexpected things can throw a kink in that plan. But the plan can help in most cases.

  • Adrienne Sasson

    I think with may tasks that need to be accomplished the right way, we tend to spend a little more time than we anticipate. It is part of being a professional.
    Now with the number of candidates vying for an open position, more and more qualified resumes/cvs are crossing the desks of recruiters/hiring managers making the decision process longer. The unfortunate part of this, those waiting for the candidate recommendation want the information yesterday without fully recognizing the time needed to full qualify the proper candidates for the final interviews.
    Since many candidates are applying for these positions, those not qualified for one position may be the perfect match for a future position. Meticulous files need to be kept with notes about the candidate and their key qualifications. Hopefully, these candidate files can be accessed when the next request comes in. Now that they have been given an initial interview, the process is already partly done and they can be moved to the next level of interview.

  • Noor Muhammad

    Another challenge for HR is to ensure that evaluations made for candidates are unbiased, specially when candidates and evaluators are belonging to cross cultures/nationalities. This can help them maintain the cultural diversity and avoid dominancy of specific groups; which restricts the talent to enter in a company.

  • Subhas C Biswas

    Good candidates and good catches (in fishing) need to be hooked at first opportunity and brought to the shore fast.
    Taking time – the process need to be improved. Same day decisions are always better.

  • Eric Van Wetering

    Hi Salima,
    In the past i have been a business unit manager (full P&L responsibility) at a top quality mid size (about 125 experienced ERP and business consultants + 250 allied interim managers) consultancy firm at the time when everybody was fighting for the best resources. We competed with PWC, Accenture, CAP/Gemini and others for the best consultants.
    What we did is to have an internal target of settings a time target of less than 1 week from inquiry of people who were interested and making them an offer. Which meant having 3 interviews with a senior and two managers in that week. Managers who like myself were sometimes also running key projects for customers. That went pretty well when I look back on it.
    However I think speed like that is hardly ever possible in non-consultancy organizations.
    Just to give you an idea about what is possible …

  • David V.

    Bring them in from a temporary agency. you get an easy check to discover what kind of worker they are and after six months you may make them an offer to become a full time company employee.
    *Plenty of time to do a great background check.

  • Theresa Wilt, MBA Accountant

    I agree with David V. and think there should be more trial basis hiring where both sides get the opportunity to test drive the working relationship because there is just so much that cannot be determined in an interview compared to day-to-day work. I would say this from both sides of the table, as the person hiring or being hired, I would welcome the opportunity to test-drive the match.

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