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Golden Rules of Best Practice Recruitment

Golden Rules of Best Practice RecruitmentDoes recruitment sometimes seem more of a chore than an opportunity? How confident are you that you always find the best person?

Read these Ten Golden Rules of best practice recruitment to help you improve your experiences and get started on the right foot. Remember, recruitment success is measured by happy productive employees that choose to stay for many years.


1. Plan ahead

Consider where you expect the organisation to be in 2-3 years time. Think about the impact of possible promotions. What can you do to ensure you have staff ready to move upwards? Who can you cross train, so you do not suddenly find yourself with a skills or knowledge gap? Where might a member of staff leaving give you an opportunity to do things differently?

2. Know what you want

Are you looking for someone to directly replace an individual who is leaving? Or could there be more value in recruiting someone with wider skills? Is this a new position? Think long term, as well as about filling the immediate need. Define what the job involves and what sort of person you need. What experience and competencies are non-negotiable? Where can you afford to be more flexible?

3. Set clear expectations

There is no point making the job sound more attractive than it really is. Anyone recruited on that basis will soon be disappointed. The more honest and accurate the job description, the less time you spend dealing with unsuitable candidates and the more focused you make your final shortlist.

4. Have an efficient process for weeding out weaker candidates

With an assessment questionnaire, you can quickly eliminate those people who don’t have the skills or experience you are after. Then, use telephone interviews to cut down your final shortlist.

5. Create a standard list of interview questions relevant to the job

When you ask each person the same questions, your interviews become fairer and more objective. If the candidate gives good responses, you can develop the conversation further.

6. Give candidates tasks to do

Simple tasks can tell you a lot more than an interview alone. Interviewing for customer service staff? Ask them to write an email in response to a customer complaint. Looking for line managers? Get candidates together as a group, ask them to discuss how they would handle typical people management scenarios. Then listen to what they say and watch how they interact with each other.

7. Involve more than one person in the interview process

A second perspective is invaluable to help make sure you pick the best person for the job rather than simply the person you get on with best. If you don’t have an HR department, involve other members of your team, or a management colleague.

8. Show shortlisted candidates around

Let people see the workplace and meet the people they will be working with. This helps them to decide whether this job is right for them. It also allows you to assess the impression the individual makes on your existing team.

9. Keep it legal

Take appropriate advice on how to make sure all your procedures are legal. What you are allowed to put in job adverts, or to ask in interviews? Could any of your selection activities be discriminatory?

10. Have a structured induction programme

Plan activities to make sure the new arrival feels welcome and that all the essentials are covered within the first few weeks. This is the best way to get new people up and running quickly and ensure they settle in and stay. Remember that best practice recruitment is about long term retention and job satisfaction for the new employee.

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About Simon Barlow

Simon Barlow
Simon Barlow works with clients to assist with recruitment needs, including clarification of role specifications, interview training, retention of staff and design and implementation of effective recruitment campaign processes and policies. Read more about Simon >>

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