Recruitment: are you prepared for the storm that is coming?

Recruiting: Art or Science?

HerbMixerRecruiting is not an exact science.  I cannot guarantee you will get the best person every time, however, if you use all of the tools in the recruiting toolbox and are aware of the potential mistakes – I can guarantee you will drastically reduce your chances of getting the wrong person.

Recruiting the right person first try, not only saves you money and stress it also saves your whole organisation from disruption and angst.

Changes are a-foot…

The current New Zealand governments’ proposed changes to the Employment Relations Act (encapsulated in a bill which is expected to see its passage through the house this year) adds yet more reasons to ensure that you get the right person. 

Warning, Will Robinson, Warning!

TeddyHospitalAll employers need to be aware that the bill proposes restoring reinstatement as the primary remedy for unjustified dismissal.

Can you begin to imagine a scenario where a difficult, disruptive or incompetent employee is dismissed and reinstated because let’s talk frankly you and I both know no-one (who is competent themselves) willingly fires staff who are high performers.   Yet constantly we see court rulings claiming dismissals were unjustified due to a procedural failure or sometimes just due to some reason not obvious to us mere mortals.  Picture how your organisation is going to cope when the person whose departure your staff have just celebrated is forcibly returned to you; smug in the knowledge that you ain’t gonna risk a replay of that particular scenario.

The learning………  get good people right off!

In my frequent observation, by far the biggest reason behind recruiting errors is the pressure to fill a vacancy quickly.  Good employers worry about how much pressure other staff may be under to cover the workload of the unfilled position.  Sadly, these are often the times when good employers overlook alarm bells they should have heeded. 

Some of the most common recruitment errors I see, ironically, come from the best employers.  Employers who value their staff and treat them with respect.  It is their very niceness, positive attitude and ability to build a great team that makes them the most exposed to such common errors.

The Usual Suspects: Three common recruiting errors

 happy1.      Trustworthy people tend to trust people.  Great right?  Maybe not no.  You only need to read the news to realise that people with fake qualifications get jobs.  Do you ALWAYS obtain certified copies of your applicants’ qualifications?

2.      During the initial needs assessment it is important to think about the role separately from the company.  I once worked to fill a role for a sole charge night shift position.  The client listed ‘team player’ as one of the attributes they wanted, nay needed.  This is not as obvious a mistake as you may think; Team player was an important company value; however team players generally don’t like working alone and at hours that restrict their availability for extracurricular team involvement.

3.      In the early stages of upskilling managers in the recruitment process I sometimes sit in on interviews to give feedback.  All too often I have witnessed this: the sympathetic employer, seeing the candidate’s obvious nerves and seeking to put them at ease, couching their questions in a way that leads the candidate to a great answer.  An answer that impresses the interview panel. 

So … you are a trustworthy, empathetic, team player … currently growing your team?  You might want to remember these common mistakes as you go, slowly and cautiously forward.

Good luck on your journey, 

I hope I have made it a little safer for you today


The Barefoot Recruiter.

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