Harvard Business Review recently published an article called The Definitive Guide to Recruiting in Good Times and Bad
written by Claudio Fernandez-Araoz, Boris Grousberg and Nitin Nohria; it is a call to action for all companies.
The research was conducted throughout 2007 and included interviews with CEOs of major global companies; followed by additional interviews with their Human Resource managers along with a quantitative survey of their current HR practices. A second survey of executive search consultants was conducted in the summer and fall of 2008.
The authors state that hiring gets a failing grade since most companies react to hiring situations as emergencies they explain it might be why so many companies recruit so poorly. They found that “hiring practices were disturbingly vague and that respondents relied heavily on subjective personal preferences or on largely unquestioned organizational traditions, often based on false assumptions.” The executives they surveyed also held widely differing views regarding the desirable attributes of new hires. These executives also disagreed on whether it was best to hire insiders or outsiders, on who should be involved in the talent acquisition and recruiting process, on what assessment tools were most suitable, and on what the keys were to successful hiring and retention.
Many (43%) of the executive search consultants surveyed reported that their client companies considered the number of years of relevant work experience to be one of the top reasons for hiring a particular candidate; 24% gave similar weight to the ability to collaborate n teams and 11% factored in a candidates readiness to learn new things. The authors go on to state that “it’s one thing to take a poor approach to hiring. but what really stands out is that many CEO’s do not recognize their recruiting situation for what it is.”
The final result is that despite a universal acknowledgment that hiring good people is a key source of competitive advantage they could only find a few companies that excel at one or more aspects of the hing process and just a handful that come anywhere close to hiring “gold standard.”
My take away from this article is that all people come to a job with a unique set of behaviors, attributes and values; organizations big and small need to understand what makes a candidate tick and where the best match is for a candidate and the company in the three key areas I mentioned. When and individual’s behaviors and values are aligned with the right roles in an organization magic happens for both parties; everyone wins and isn’t that what makes organizations great?
Contact us to find out how you can get the right people on the bus in the right seat the first time!