Why you’re doing recruitment all wrong


The traditional recruitment system we’ve all grown up with – resume, cover letter, interview – might be the default system we use when recruiting, but it’s usually the wrong one.


Companies often don’t realise how costly employing the wrong candidate can be, especially if it’s a small business with fewer than 10 staff – and when you’re faced with an opening, sometimes you opt for hiring someone quickly over hiring someone properly.

But losing an employee within the first six months will end up costing you far more money in the long run, on top of the time and energy it takes to train a new person, as well as the hit to staff morale when there’s a revolving door of new staff.

So why use an outdated and inefficient system, especially in an era where applicants often have their resumes professionally put together, and bulk send applications to any job they might be qualified for?

As a business coach, here are some of my top tips for making sure you find the right person for the job, first time:

  • Begin with a unique job advertisement: Your ad needs to stand out and connect with people at a heart level. Use it to showcase your values, beliefs and the personality style of the business. You know you’ve got your ad right when applicants comment on it in their application.
  • Don’t review all the applications: Candidates often do a bulk send of applications and aren’t really taking the time to determine if the job is appropriate for them.  Rather than wasting time on reviewing applications, ask the applicants to answer of series of questions on a phone message.  This process alone will weed out around 70% of people who aren’t passionate or serious about the role.
  • Make the interview the last part of the process: Rather than start with the interview which can be time consuming, leave this step until last so you only interview candidates who have real potential to be successful. You should have a strong sense of a person’s values and skills before you step in to an interview room
  • Give the applications a test run to demonstrates their skills prior to the interview. Make sureyour new hire can perform the tasks required of them by asking them to undertake a test run in a real situation they could face if employed. You will quickly see if they can perform under pressure.
  • Pick the right personality: Understand the kind of person who will succeed in the role – do they need to be direct, supportive, creative or something else. Include a personality assessment for all potential candidates so you understand who they are, their shortcomings and if they are happy to work on them.

An employee is a multi-year investment, so getting the right recruitment process in place will pay dividends down the track. Taking some simple steps will help you do that.


Jamie Cunningham, Business Coach