Is our hiring process reactive?

Today many recruiters and hiring managers simply react when someone quits, retires, or gets fired. We post an ad, interview, and hope we’ve hired the right person.  Usually, hiring mistakes result when we focus too much on the person who left and let our biases lead us astray. We tend to look for someone who is similar or dissimilar to the person we’re replacing, and we fail to base our decisions on objective data.

To make matter worse, as creatures of habit we rely on the same old processes. They’re easy to fall back on when we don’t take the time to strategically assess where we are today and what we need to do to be successful tomorrow.

To become proactive, we need to infuse objectivity into the selection process upfront, before the interview process begins. The better-quality information we obtain from qualified tools, the better our hiring decisions.  Such objectivity requires a new mindset, a mindfulness of what we are doing and why.  For more on this subject, see my article Easily Infuse Objectivity Early in Your Hiring System. (

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2014

Hiring biases cost you money.

Today, many recruiters are complaining about not finding qualified candidates. Yet candidates with the credentials and required experience never hear back after applying for opportunities. Or, if they are interviewed, they’re told they are overqualified, don’t have a particular skill set, or don’t have the right pedigree (e.g., industry experience, professional titles, salary history, etc.).

Age does matter. Although the EEO and other agencies frown upon age discrimination, we all know it happens all too often. Recruiters are simply following edicts from their bosses to find someone younger and cheaper. They don’t know how to “sell” a qualified candidate to these bosses. Bosses and recruiters don’t believe they have the time to strategically assess what is truly needed and are unwilling to think outside the box to find the gold. Statistically, younger employees are more job-mobile and will leave a position when more qualified ones will not. More-experienced employees have been through the instability every company experiences and have learned to roll up their sleeves and wait it out.

Here’s a newsflash: Amateurs don’t save companies money! A well-qualified professional who fits the job, regardless of age, can normally do it faster, more thoroughly, and with better quality than someone without experience. The failure by hiring managers to objectively assess for job fit by using qualified assessments can hinder your company’s ability to select the right employees. The truth is poor job fit will create short-term employees or employees who simply do enough to get by and keep their paychecks but no more. It’s a costly status quo with a limited return on investment, because it keeps your company focus in a reactive mode, not on proactive growth.

Filter and invest. Infuse objective data into the process upfront, before the interview, because quality information will make for better decisions. Interviews are inherently biased and can filter out well-qualified candidates because of bias factors (e.g., age, weight, tattoos, gray hair, bald, etc.). Example: If you’re looking for a trainer and have candidates who have done training, talk with them. Use a qualified assessment to determine if they have an interest in presenting the subject matter required. What training and skill development will they need over time? Will they be comfortable in small or large groups? Can they write training content or do they rely on off-the-shelf programs? What will be the best return on investment for the company in the long run? What other skills are currently missing in the company that they can provide?

Remember, using qualified assessments can make a huge difference in vetting the right people, regardless of experience. Hiring qualified people, regardless of age and other biases, and investing in them builds a stronger company faster.

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Culture is the fall guy

Why do so many executives fail in new jobs? While many blame company culture, I would suggest that culture is the scapegoat. Poor cultural fit simply amplifies or points out what the C-suite or board members on the hiring committee failed to uncover during the vetting or onboarding process!

Instead of blaming culture, management teams should take the time to think through and write out a strategic hiring process that works, and design it to ensure that each party explores and investigates the other. They should use qualified systems and tools, trust the process, and follow it. Remember, more conversations will be required when hiring an executive to ensure consistency of philosophy and provide deeper exploration of issues and potential solutions. If you follow a well-designed system and use it in the spirit in which it was intended, you will know that you’ve done your best to ensure a positive partnership—even though there are never any guarantees. Excerpt from Companies and Executives Need to Vet and Onboard Each Other!   

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Emotional hiring can be dangerous!

Many executives are good decision-makers or they wouldn’t have the title. However, many are so busy that they fail to listen during interviews unless the candidate says the right things. Then their impulsiveness and impatience kicks in and they hire people that “feel like the right ones”! Hiring based on intuitive powers may sound great, but in reality it is an excuse for not using a strategic hiring system.  

Anytime you hire someone who doesn’t fit all the necessary job requirements but has the likeability factor, you’re doomed for failure. Frequent job-seekers—people with backgrounds to hide and manipulative types—have honed their interview skills well! They know what to say and how to sell themselves to get a job. They know how to be likeable.

Infuse objectivity early in the hiring process. ( ) This will significantly reduce the possibility of interviewing these types of job candidates and falling into the emotional hiring trap. Use a structured interview process, qualified assessments, and due diligence. Call those references! (Learn how to hire the right person. Get your copy of Hire Amazing Employees, Second Edition. It could save your own job!

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Are your hiring practices sane?

Recent research data revealed by Google’s head of HR, Laszlo Bock, showed that brainteaser interview questions, unstructured interviews, student GPAs or test scores, and conducting more than four interviews all had little or no predictive value for success of job candidates! ( Designing a simple yet predictive hiring system means thinking through your approach from the both sides of the desk: the applicant’s and the hiring manager’s. Infuse objectivity early in your process ( and use qualified assessments with high predictive values to help determine job fit. For other ideas, get your copy of “Hire Amazing Employees.” (

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013



Do you hold your hiring managers accountable?

Very few companies manage their hiring processes by holding their hiring managers accountable. Instead, they experience high levels of turnover and increased difficulty finding qualified candidates because managers reliance on gut reactions or play the blame game.  Neither will resolve systems or bias issues when new employees fail. What would happen if instead your hiring manager’s compensation was tied to employee turnover and performance? A bad manager would either step aside or improve in order to create an environment for employee success. ( (Bad Managers eGuide)) They would improve their use of qualified hiring tools to ensure the best objective information is being utilized and reviewed to ensure laser-like coaching for employee success. (

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Making the Same Hiring Mistakes?

When you keep making the same hiring mistakes over and over, it’s costly and very time consuming. You lose credibility with your staff and clients. It’s time to stop and get help. You have a misperception of potential employees’ work experience, skills, and/or job fit required. With clarification and by learning new ways to interview, how to use qualified assessments, and how to improve your due diligence processes, you can improve your hiring results. (  Hopefully, it won’t be too late to rebuild your credibility.

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Helpful Hint:

Job ads with trite sound-bites fail to attract, e.g., great opportunity and work hard. Learn how-to attract the right employees:





Mediocrity Stifles Results

All business owners and executives wish to succeed in their business. Yet when they hire inexperienced and unseasoned professionals, thinking they are saving money, their bottom line suffers. Why? The employees have not had time to develop the business knowledge and acumen needed to perform at the level required, instead relying on “it’s good enough.” Mediocrity stifles results—you get what you pay for.

When hiring for any position, be clear about the attributes required for the person to succeed, and the required results for the company to prosper. Use a structured interview to ensure the person has the actual hands-on experience by drilling down into his or her responses. Often candidates talk hypothetically, not having had the actual responsibility you are looking for. Use a qualified assessment to ensure they have the thinking style, occupational interests, and capabilities to do the job the way it needs to be done to achieve great results. Don’t be afraid to conduct reference checks to ensure the person can and will actually do the work, not just talk about it. (For further information on how to do it, get your copy of Hire Amazing Employees, Second Edition (

Although hiring people light on experience and heavy on job fit can be a good idea, realize it will take an extra investment of time and money before they can produce at the level required. Adjust your expectations appropriately.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Jeannette Seibly has been hiring amazing employees for over 34 years. She delivers straight talk with immediate results to business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises, achieving dynamic results. You may contact her at to discuss your hiring challenges. Get her newest book, Hire Amazing Employees, Second Edition: Improve Your Profits (and Your Work Life)!  It includes templates for interviews and reference checking.

Easily Infuse Objectivity Early In Your Hiring System

Did you know that requesting applicants to email or mail you resumes is outdated? Or that over 50 percent of resumes stretch the truth? Yet many companies rely solely on this data to select candidates for interviews—a poor selection practice. By doing so, they shortchange the goal of collecting good objective, valid, and reliable data in order to net truly qualified applicants.

Your hiring system speaks volumes: it’s the first impression many have of your business. Failure to utilize current technology has savvy job seekers questioning if you are a leader—or could be—in your industry. Failure to follow-up and communicate applicant status frustrates many. Top performers wish to work with winning bosses and companies that respect their time and efforts.

Using a well-designed applicant tracking system (ATS) is cost effective and allows you to post job ads and showcase your company, products, and services. It attracts qualified candidates, operates without paper, and helps you vet applicants, saving hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars. When strategically planned and followed, an ATS infuses objectivity into your hiring system early on.

Time-saving keys for ATS:

1) Require that an application form be completed. It minimizes truth-stretching (e.g., inaccurate job titles, job duties, company names, dates of employment, and titles).

2) Incorporate pre-screen questions and core value assessments to ensure objective, valid, and reliable data is used to select candidates for the next steps while weeding out unqualified ones.

3) Automatically thank applicants and make it easier to communicate with them. It’s critical to remember your applicants are future clients, vendors, suppliers, and decision-makers for awarding contracts. You want them to have a positive impression of your company. (Read Hire Amazing Employees, Second Edition for further time-saving ideas, available at

All ATSs are not all created equal. Factors to consider when choosing your ATS (taken from Hire Amazing Employees):

  • User-friendly sites can be reached within one or two clicks from the social media site or the job posting. Busy professionals need to be enticed the moment they read your online ad; most will not return—even if they have the best of intentions to do so. Make it easy for them to apply and for you to receive their information in order to infuse objectivity in your decision-making process.
  • Is there a fee for posting your openings on the ATS site?
  • What is the cost for setup and maintenance of the site?
  • Can the application form, job posting, and other pertinent information be customized?
  • Will it notify interested applicants of future positions? (That’s a great way to keep your candidate pool filled.)
  • Do your job openings easily post to job boards?
  • Can you collect EEO (Equal Employment Opportunity) information? Tracking may be required if you have any government contracts (or if you are a subcontractor).
  • Is there a human verification process to reduce spam? This process prevents hackers from completing your application form and blasting resumes to you.
  • Is it easy to communicate with candidates inside the system and generate automated notifications (e.g., completion of application, request for interviews, etc.)?

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013 All Rights Reserved

Want an award-winning ATS to attract amazing employees to your company? Click here

Jeannette Seibly has been hiring amazing employees for over 34 years. She delivers straight talk with immediate results to business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises, achieving dynamic results. You may contact her at to discuss your hiring challenges. Get her newest book, Hire Amazing Employees, Second Edition: Improve Your Profits (and Your Work Life)! It includes templates for interviews and reference checking.


Hiring Refresher for Busy Bosses

  • Did the last hiring mistake zap you?
  • Still spending sleepless nights, over-thinking how to fix it?
  • Customers complaining about the quality and timeliness of deliverables?

You may need a refresher on hiring and selecting the right top performer.

As busy bosses, we do not hire often. When we do, it becomes very time consuming. We hope to find a quality candidate like the one who just left, or avoid hiring a similar problem to the one we fired.

This is a short 30-minute refresher on “secrets” to shorten up the selection process and ensure  hiring the right person. The first time!

  • How to use ATS (Applicant Tracking Systems) effectively to weed out less desirable candidates.
  • What is a legally qualified assessment? What makes them different than the 3,000 published ones on the market?
  • Completing a full due diligence now saves countless hours and money later.

Join us on Thursday, September 13, 2012 @ 9 a.m. MDT (11 a.m. edt/8 a.m. PDT)

Registration takes only a minute and will save you many sleepless nights!

Infuse consistency, reliability and validity into your hiring process! Register today!

About our presenter:

Jeannette Seibly has been successfully assisting her clients to hire the right person, the first time, for over 20 years. With over 33 years of human resource, business management experience working with companies ranging from $100K to $100MM, and reducing countless turnover and poor hiring selections, Seibly has saved companies 100’s of thousands of dollars. She’s the noted author of “Hiring Amazing Employees” (, “It’s Time to Brag!” (, and over a hundred articles on hiring and being a biz-savvy executive and business owner. She’s already at work on the 2nd edition of “Hiring Amazing Employees.” ( for current copy).    Register today!