No matter how big or how small your company is, or what industry you’re in, hiring the right people is critical to business survival. However, bringing on new employees can be a complex process—from identifying job qualifications, to determining compensation, to making sure you find the best person for the job.
This high-level guide will walk you through the six steps of a successful hiring process.
Step 1: Conduct a job analysis
A job analysis is the process of collecting information on the specific skills, experience, education and qualities required for the role. The more research, and the more detailed data you collect about what the job entails, the expectations and requirements, the more accurate the job description you’ll be able to create.
Even if a job analysis has been done for the position, and a job description created in the past, it’s important to go through the analysis process every time the position is open. Objectives change, needs change, and the goals and duties of the position may have evolved over the years—or need to evolve to meet new business goals. Make time to meet with the appropriate department head to understand what’s needed to meet the requirements of that job today, including technical and soft skills.
Step 2: Develop a salary range and compensation package
After analyzing the requirements, responsibilities and skill level required for the job, consult current market research to determine the salary range being paid for a job with similar requirements in your industry and geographic location.
Based on your organization’s compensation strategy, determine whether you want your range to exceed, meet, or fall below the market.
Instead of thinking in terms of salary only, determine the total compensation package you want to offer, including incentives, bonuses and other perks. Do you offer a flexible work schedule or remote work option? A matching 401K? Gym memberships? Child care? Extra PTO?
All of those factors can help you differentiate yourself in the market and compete for top talent, even if the salary range you offer isn’t as high as your competitors.
Step 3: Write a formal job description
Once your analysis is done, you’re ready to write a detailed job description, based on the information gathered. This part of the process is critical in that it provides a clear picture of what the job entails on a day-to-day basis, and the skillsets needed to excel in the position.
While, in the past, the data collection, analysis, and the creation and storage of individual job descriptions was a highly manual process, today, companies have access to job management technology that makes description creation and management a simpler, more consistent centralized process.
Step 4: Create a job posting
While job descriptions are typically internal documents, the job posting is the external document that explains the job and its requirements to prospective candidates.
The post should do two things:
First, like the job description, it should present an authentic, clear realistic overview of what the job is, the day-to-day duties, expectations and the type of skills required to excel in the position. Will the employee have direct reports? Is knowledge of specific software needed? Does he or she need presentation skills, negotiating skills or the ability to move fast and balance multiple projects? How does the job fit in the organization as a whole?
Second, it should give the candidate a good understanding of the company culture, the work environment, and the nuances that make your company unique. What unique benefits do you offer? Do you have service days, a sustainability initiative or in-office amenities, like an espresso bar or catered lunch?
Candidates should be able to see themselves in the environment, look at the expectations and decide If it’s something they want to pursue, or something that isn’t a fit. The more detailed and honest you are, the better qualified candidates you’ll get
Step 5: Conduct interviews
Every company has its own approach to interviewing job candidates, based on its culture, and the specific job that’s being filled. Some have HR do the initial screening and leave the rest of the interviews to the hiring manager. Others leave the initial screenings to the direct supervisor and hiring manager, and then have a final interview with the group VP or, in the case of smaller organizations, the company president. Still others add in a peer interview with a select group of prospective colleagues.
The rise of the remote work environment and COVID-19 flare ups in different areas of the country have prompted companies to conduct more virtual interviews. These require a little more finesse to do, as it’s harder to read body language and keep a natural flow of conversation going (particularly if a screen freezes up, there’s static or interference or phones and email alerts start going off in the background.)
Whether the interview is virtual or in person, setting aside adequate, uninterrupted time, and having a quiet environment in which to conduct the interview will produce better interviews and better outcomes.
Step 6: Conduct a background check and ensure eligibility
Once you’ve found “the one,” perform a background check, with the candidate’s consent. You’ll also have to make sure that the candidate is eligible to work in the United States. You accomplish this by having the employee complete the first section of an I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification and provide the appropriate supporting documentation. Employers must review these documents and complete the second section of the I-9 by the employee’s third day on the job. This form must be stored for each employee and available for inspection up to three years after that employee leaves the company.
Hiring is a complex process, and one that is critical to an organization’s success.
By taking the time upfront to conduct your job analysis, create a solid job description and attach a well-planned total compensation package to the role will position you to attract the best talent to help propel your company’s ongoing success