We Hire for Job Skills and Fire for Poor Job Fit

Many employers have taken note of Starbuck CEO Howard Schultz’s recent call for companies to create jobs and improve their own businesses. The problem is that hiring to create jobs does not necessarily improve businesses if antiquated hiring practices do not ensure good job fit!

There is a plethora of information on how to recruit, interview and hire the right person, from good strategic and sustainable business practices, to woo-woo. Many employers have relied upon traditional practices for too long. They still fail to understand the whole person they are hiring, not just the person’s alleged skill-set. If you continue to do what you’ve always done, you’ll be perpetually in the hiring-then-firing-trying-to-get-it-right loop.

Get started, now. It’s important to know your numbers. The costs of turnover, honeymoon period, and poor promotion or transfer choices can quickly off-set any tax credits. Numbers give credibility for the need to create a truly sustainable strategic hiring system. It’s important that everyone is committed to real results; it is too easy to be lured back into old habits.

Recruiting. An on-line application process will snag top talent faster than expecting them to snail-mail you a resume with cover letter. Cast a broad net to ensure you’re attracting the right candidates. Include a ten-question format to clarify their job skills, experience, education and career intentions. It will help you find those hidden gems. Do not get caught in the trap of relying solely upon key word searches or skimming applications and/or resumes. 

Interview. Train your hiring managers how to conduct legal and effective interviews. Design structured interview questions to determine a candidate’s actual skill set and experience. Do not rely upon the interview alone to make a good hiring decision. Beware. There are many well-trained interviewees who know how to tell you exactly what you want to hear.

Assessments. Use valid assessments that meet the Department of Labor requirements. They provide good, objective information that is not obtainable in interviews, or by reading a resume or application form. They provide insights into the candidate as a whole person. Use job match pattern technology to determine job fit. 

Background and Credit Checks. White collar crime is on the rise, especially since many companies do not prosecute for theft or other illegal activities. In addition to using background and credit checks, include a core value assessment as part of the on-line application process. This can help to eliminate potential hiring problems.

Employment Verification and References. Both are important to ensure all the information you’ve collected is indeed verified. Ask for professional references and call them to affirm the information submitted by the candidates. If you’ve done a careful job of collecting authentic information, there should be no surprises. 

While this may sound time consuming, documenting evidence to fire someone actually takes more time, money and energy than hiring the right person! Furthermore, the in/uh-oh/out scenario associated with this sort of turnover can sully your reputation. The right person in the right job actually helps you keep customers and grow your business, (think, make money). Having the right people also ensures you attract and keep other great employees too. Then you can truly be free to focus on improving and building your business.

©Jeannette Seibly, 2011

About Jeannette Seibly

Jeannette Seibly delivers “straight talk with immediate results” to business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises, creating dynamic results. You may contact her at JLSeibly@SeibCo.com for an initial free consultation.

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