Posts Tagged ‘Hiring Process’

4 Tips to Act Like a Detective When Hiring Job Candidates

Thursday, May 30th, 2013

CAI’s Director of Membership, Doug Blizzard, offers several strategies to help you make solid hiring decisions in today’s video post. He suggests that you act like a detective during the interview and hiring process to make sure your new hire is the right person to do the job. Doug says that organizations should objectively piece together clues to find their new employee. However, many hiring managers act like first-time car buyers—nervous, unprepared, settle for the first thing they find, etc.

As a detective, Doug encourages you to take your time during the hiring process. Actively find out if job candidates have the character and credentials to fill your open position. Doug gives you four ways to pull off a successful investigation:

1)      Screen for Organizational Fit

Many leading companies believe cultural or organizational fit are more important than specific job skills. Hire someone who fits your workplace culture, and you’ll likely spend less time dealing with a bad hire who affects the morale and performance of your other employees. Doug says you can’t teach character. He lists several ways to screen for organizational fit in the video.

2)       Require Letters of Reference

Doug suggests having your job candidates provide you with two letters of reference—one personal and one professional. The letters will tell you a lot about the candidate and help you indentify the type of character your candidate has.

3)      Ask Behavior-Based Interview Questions

Job candidates are prepared for standard interview questions, such as their strengths, weaknesses and even what type of animal they’d be. However, Doug says the best predictor of success is past results. Identify success factors for your company’s available position, and ask your candidates how they were able to have similar results at their workplace.

4)      Perform Background Checks

In the video, Doug says the cost to perform background checks pales in comparison to the price of a bad hire. Fifty-three percent of all job applications contain errors so performing this step is crucial.

If you have additional questions or would like more information to help you with your hiring process, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel Team at 919-878-9222 or 336-668-7746.

Strengthen Your Employer Brand with 4 Tips

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

employer brandWhat do people think of your organization? When people discuss your business, are the conversations mostly positive? Have you googled your company name to see what comes up? Are your employees quick to offer you the number of their friend or family member when an open position becomes available?

Knowing how your organization is viewed by the public, your industry peers and rivals is important. Having a strong employer brand can make a difference on whether you can secure a great candidate for a vacancy or how a news outlet portrays you to the public. There are several steps you can take to strengthen your employer brand to show that your organization is a stellar place to work. Try the four tips below:

Define How You’re Perceived

In order to strengthen your employer brand, you have to determine how you want your organization to be perceived. Once you decide how you want to represent your organization, make sure your company’s mission statement and values reflect that decision. Your mission statement and values are generally one of the first places interested job seekers visit to learn more about a company. Make sure yours represents your organization well.

Offer Competitive Benefits

Do you want to be known as the company that offers lousy benefits? Or the one that doesn’t understand the importance of work/life balance? In order to become an employer who attracts and secures high-performing talent, you must do your homework and find out what the top benefits candidates are looking for. Competition for top-notch talent is fierce. A strong benefits package that includes a competitive salary as well as non-monetary perks will help you establish your positive employer brand.

Make Smart Hiring Decisions

Don’t just hire a candidate because they have the exact skills and qualifications that your job description requires. Making a smart hiring decision goes beyond matching up a resume to an open position. Adding a new hire to your ranks is important, so it’s critical to ensure they match your culture and will get along with their new coworkers. Failing to do so could result in the new hire leaving in under a year, or worse, one of your loyal employees leaving because they don’t work well with the new employee.

Provide Incredible Customer Service

A surefire way to enhance your employer brand is to improve your customer service. Think of brands like Apple and Zappos. Yes, they sell great products, but they also rely on their customer service teams to help them represent their company. Make sure your employees have all the tools and training they need to offer an exceptional experience to your customers. When your employees are content and engaged, your customers are more likely to be content and engaged as well.

For more ways to improve your employer brand, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel Team at 919-878-9222 or 336-668-7746.

Photo Source: Robert Scoble

6 Tips to Help You Think Like a Sales Person to Find Top Talent

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

CAI’s Director of Member Development, Doug Blizzard, shares advice for finding high-performing talent in today’s video post. He offers a reason as to why employers are struggling to find top talent:

“…it may be because you’re looking in the same places, in the same ways, and at the same time as everybody else.”

He goes on to say that finding top talent today requires a new approach. He suggests learning from the world of sales to benefit your recruiting efforts. Doug details six lessons that you and your organization can borrow from your sales team:

1.       Start Your Process Early

Landing the best account takes time in sales. Don’t be desperate in your hunt for a new team member because you will find desperate job applicants. Doug says to get great people you need to start the recruiting process well in advance of the opening.


2.       Put Your Goals in Writing

In the video, Doug shares that the top sales people all have incredibly clear goals and a written plan to accomplish their goals. For recruiting people for your company’s critical roles, he suggests that you create and keep a list of people you want to hire. These are your sales targets.


3.       Define Your Ideal Candidate

Doug says the best sales people win more business because they only focus on ideal prospects, so make sure your team has determined who the ideal candidate is in regard to skills and fit. If you’re not sure what to look for, Doug suggests asking your best employees because they will want your team to attract great coworkers.


4.       Get Known in Your Industry

In order to get known by high-performing talent, you must get known in your industry. Doug encourages you to find out what associations your prospects belong to, events they attend and social media platforms they participate on. In the video, Doug lays out several ways to be more visible to your prospects, as well as in your industry. He says these efforts will help you identify your top candidates and also draw them to you.


5.       Create a Regular Touch System

Once you find your top prospects, Doug says you should implement a touch system of regular contact with them in order to pull them towards your company. He suggests that you mix up the medium you use. The touch system could include emails, phone calls, snail mail, etc. You’ll also want to mix up the content you send, so share information about your industry, specific professions, and other data your prospects will find useful. Be creative and make sure to include information about your organization.


6.       Create a Clear Value Proposition

The best sales people sell on value according to Doug. Relating this to employers, he says you must be able to clearly articulate to your prospects why they should come work for you. It can’t only be in terms of pay and benefits, he warns. Work to uncover their needs and match them to your workplace environment. Show them how coming to work for your organization will get them where they need to be.

For additional guidance on recruiting like a sales person, please contact Doug Blizzard at 919-713-5244 or


Smart Recruiting is the Key for Securing Top Talent – 4 Helpful Tips

Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

recruiting talentTo achieve a high-performing workplace that creates positive business results, you should place finding top talent at the beginning of your to-do list. Current data reveals that many businesses are struggling to fill positions that have been open for months. Although there are many candidates in the market, employers are finding that these job seekers do not meet the skills or qualifications required to do the job well. Knowing where to find candidates and who you are looking for are important factors in making hiring decisions that are advantageous to your organization.

Employees represent a driving force behind the success or failure of your company. Revamp your recruiting and hiring process by following these four tips:

Create a Talent Pool

Keep your eyes and ears open to ensure you recruit the best and brightest talent for your organization. Whether or not you’re hiring, monitoring the candidates who are interested in seeking opportunity at your organization will be helpful when you’re in a crunch to fill a position. Continuously evaluate your talent pool to have a good idea of who to select for interviews when the time comes.  Keeping an up-to-date archive will help you uncover high-performing talent while avoiding last-minute hiring decisions.

Don’t Skimp on the Job Description

Before you start to pursue suitable candidates, be sure you know what duties and tasks the new hire will be responsible for. Carefully construct your job description to explicitly detail what the future employee will be doing. Making specific job descriptions will weed out the people who really don’t have the experience or desire to fulfill the position.

Devise a Sound Plan

Make your recruiting process more efficient by assigning an interview team to prescreen job seekers to ensure they fit the minimum requirements of your job description. Use your interview team to help you evaluate the interviewees and eventually help you decide who should be offered the opening.

Get Out There

Don’t be passive in your hunt for top talent. Sure you’ll get some good candidates who apply for a position directly on your website or through a job search engine. However, using additional outlets in your hunt will widen your selection of candidates. So be active! Use social media, post an ad in your local newspaper, host networking events, participate in career fairs and ask your employees for referrals.

For additional information on securing high-performing talent at your organization, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel Team at 919-878-9222 or 336-668-7746.

Photo Source: Victor1558

Recruiting The Best and Brightest

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Employees are the framework for all organizations, and represent a driving force behind the success or failure of a company. As one of the key elements for long-term success, it’s critical that companies place focus on the hiring process, and strive to recruit the most intelligent, motivated and versatile employees available.

How can companies position themselves to not only recruit employees, but attract top talent?

Evaluate Current Processes

First, evaluate the current selection process your organization has in place. Because of convenience, countless job seekers will come through newspaper ads and website postings, but by using additional outlets (social media, executive staffing firms, industry professional associations, conferences and online boards) a new kind of job candidate can be uncovered. By extending your network pool, you can build relationships, and much can be said about hiring a person whose character you know, instead of hiring solely on Internet credentials.

Provide Thorough Job Descriptions

Once you are recruiting within the correct market, make sure that your company job descriptions are clearly outlined. A detailed description of requirements and responsibilities is imperative, as it’s a way for you to label and define the expectations of future candidates. Don’t wait until the interview process to discover your interviewee doesn’t meet the basic qualifications. If you allow the job description to cover basic requirements, your interview process will reveal the candidate whose skills stand out above the rest.

Keep an Eye on Talent

To recruit the best and brightest, employers must always keep an eye open for top talent. Firms with exceptional recruiting results always monitor potential applicants, whether hiring or not. Through continuous evaluation of the candidate pool, organizations have a better idea of who to select when the time comes. By keeping a running list of candidates, you can keep a watch over top talent and avoid hiring at the last minute.

Monitor your Company Brand

An important piece of the puzzle that is often overlooked is to monitor your company brand. What people say outside of the company walls matters immensely. The overall public perception of your organization will be a leading determinant for many candidates. Outside of salary and job growth, employees want to be part of a company whose culture is respected and valued. Treat your current staff well, as they will be your spokespersons to others about what makes your organization great.

For additional information about recruiting, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.

Photo Source: Argonne National Laboratory

New Hire Surveys: First Identify Your Goal

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011

The common thread of motivation behind any employee survey is to gain effective feedback for recruitment and retention. With the proper analysis and actions taken as a result of what is learned, companies inevitably experience an increase in overall retention rates, benefiting employee morale and organizational expansion.

When it comes to new hire surveys, you want to be sure to identify your main goal before planning and developing the survey.  Here are some target goals and recommendations.

Target Goal – Evaluating the Hiring Process

If you want to evaluate the hiring process, you will want to survey your new hires relatively soon after they come on board, ideally within the first two weeks in most cases.  You will want to ask your new hires about the accuracy of information received while they were being recruited, how the organization was presented, their impression of the interview process and whether their direct supervisor met with them to discuss their career goals. Also, new hires are often asked for suggestions on improving the hiring process.

Target Goal – Evaluating the Onboarding Process

Proper onboarding is critical to the success of new employees, especially if you expect them to be productive relatively quickly.  These surveys should be most effective when conducted 30-45 days after an employee’s start date.  Topics discussed should include: did they receive the knowledge, resources and training needed to be productive in their job in a timely manner; whether their responsibilities and expectations were spelled out clearly; and whether they felt they were able to spend the time with their manager necessary to help them succeed.

Target Goal – Evaluating the Satisfaction of New Hires

If the goal is to analyze the growth and satisfaction of new hires, then employee evaluations should be administered 90 days after employment. Waiting approximately three months allows new staff members to become settled and confident in their position, fluid in their work process and comfortable with the day-to-day operations of the organization. At this point, the employee should be able to deliver healthy feedback regarding the challenges and strengths within company culture and management, as well as employee training, mentoring, and socialization.

All surveys should be conducted by either Human Resources or an independent third party rather than by direct supervisors to encourage honest feedback from employees. A “rated answer” response will allow the employer to aggregate the data and spot issues, while “open-ended” questions typically provide more details.  Supervisors should also be asked to complete a survey with respect to new hires. This survey will provide feedback on the quality of the recruiting and hiring process overall.

Where applicable, request that new hires note their department, division, gender and race on the survey. This will serve to uncover potential issues within a department and identify any discriminatory treatment during the onboarding process.

For more information or to discuss related issues to new hire surveys, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.

Photo Source: Elvert Barnes