In 2018, media outlets began reporting that the total number of job openings exceeded the total number of available workers by hundreds of thousands. That trend has continued into 2019. Furthermore, the total number of job openings in America continues to outpace hiring rates. In February 2019, American employers posted 1.4 million more jobs than they successfully hired for.
The data makes abundantly clear that there is stiff competition among employers for the best workers. This is true across almost every industry. So it's more important than ever to make the right hires. Companies should be looking to hire great employees who can contribute and are the least likely to quickly become disillusioned and start looking for work elsewhere.
Here are five tips for hiring those employees regardless of the sector your company is involved in:
1. Focus on Commitment
It's great to hire employees who already bring a certain level of education and skill to the job. But it's more important that you focus on commitment first. The best employees are those committed to hard work and career development. They are not fixated only on pay and benefits. They are looking to the future too, desiring to build their careers.
Committed employees are likewise committed to their employers as long as they are taking care of. That's the kind of mutually beneficial relationship employers should be looking for.
2. Hire for Learning Ability
Education and experience aren't all they're cracked up to be. Why? Because higher education is far different from real life. Companies are better off hiring workers capable of learning as compared to those who don't learn well because they think they already know everything. A candidate able and willing to learn is one who can grow and adapt with the company.
3. Hire According to Culture
Next is company culture. It should not be ignored during the hiring process. Your company culture might be very laid-back and easy-going. It would not be a good fit for someone who is tightly regimented and systematic. Likewise, your company's business might require a no-nonsense kind of person who dots all the I's and crosses all the T's. Candidates with more casual attitudes won't fit well.
4. Invest the Time in Research
Far too many employers focus only on resumes and personality tests to make hiring decisions. As the thinking goes, HR doesn't have time to put into thoroughly researching each candidate. We like to phrase it another way: HR doesn't have time to continually repeat the recruiting and hiring process. So put the time into researching candidates before you hire.
Look at employment histories and make some phone calls. Check out candidate social media pages. Actually call references and ask for recommendations. Thorough research now will avoid some of the pitfalls of relying too heavily on resumes that don't tell the whole truth.
5. Turn Interviews into Conversations
The interview process should not be a series of questions and answers if you want to learn the most about your potential candidates. So instead of the old-fashioned Q&A format, turn your interviews into actual conversations.
Discuss some of the key aspects of the job in question and see how candidates respond. Discuss a few tertiary issues as well. Then round out the discussion with some general work-related topics along with a few things not directly related to work at all.
Hiring great employees is not a matter of dumb luck or computerized data. It is a matter of getting to know candidates as real people with their own thoughts, needs, and outlooks.