Nonprofit Insurance Program

Common Hiring Pitfalls to Avoid

By Alexa Connelly
August 29, 2011

There are a number of ways that recruiting and hiring processes can go wrong, and hiring the right people into the right positions is too important to leave to chance. Whether your organization has dedicated human resources professionals or not, there are a number of common hiring mistakes that can be easily avoided.

  1. Planning: Make sure that you have dedicated the appropriate amount of time to planning your search before beginning the hiring process. Too often, organizations need the person hired “yesterday” and therefore jump into the process by throwing a poorly developed job posting up on a random smattering of job boards. Instead, take some time to identify exactly what you are looking for in the role, make sure that all decision makers and constituents are involved at the outset, and ensure that all stages of the recruiting and hiring process have been outlined in advance. These steps will help you focus on the needs for this role, keep the search on schedule, ensure that everyone involved is aware of his or her role in advance, and dramatically increase the chances of a successful hire.
  2. Position Scoping: Define a position that is both realistic and appealing. Are you looking for a set of skills and competencies that usually doesn’t exist within one person? Recognize that if you go forward, your search will be slow and challenging and may not lead to a successful hire. Consider recasting the position into something more realistic. Also, make sure that the salary range you have designated for the position matches the requirements and experience level you are seeking. Again, if you move forward with a disconnect in this area, your search will be slow and challenging. Adjusting expectations or the salary range at the outset is preferable to risking an unsuccessful search.
  3. Candidate Sourcing: Use a broad variety of tools and resources to generate the most diverse pool of candidates possible. One or two job boards are not going to be enough to generate a sufficiently robust and diverse candidate pool. Make sure you tap active job seekers through advertising as well as passive job seekers through aggressive outreach to the personal and professional networks of people associated with your organization.

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