Human Resources

Top Five Hidden and Paralyzing Recruiting Pitfalls

How to Avoid the Five Most Common Pitfalls in Recruiting

The Big Five: Common Recruiting Mistakes

Here are a few of the most common pitfalls when you’re interviewing and making your next hire. . .

Lower Your Risk by Analyzing the Market Effectively

Number one is not researching and seeing enough of the market when you make a decision. Don’t always fall in love. Don’t go having one-itis. Whenever you’re making a hire, you want to have multiple options. You want to have multiple avenues that you can go down in case something happens. Know who all is out there so you can have an advantage over your competitors if you understand the talent market.

Keep the Process Hot (Like Poppa Bear’s Porridge)

Number two pitfall is having a time polarized process. If you’re offering after the very first interview, you’re probably going to scare them off. It’s not a good look. It’s not a smart idea. It’s too fast. Make sure that the candidate can walk away, digesting the opportunity, thinking about it with their family, talking about it, reflecting what their life would be like to join your company.

They can’t be pushed through this process, especially the higher you go, the less likely they’re going to successfully move after a single interview. Get that sweet spot within three interviews as the perfect process length.

Then on the flip side, if you’re having an interview process that’s five, six, seven rounds and all kinds of different stakeholders going in. All kinds of people going in and out and you have to change schedules, the whole hiring process ends up lasting two or three months!

That’s a mess. You’re losing the candidate inertia there. they’re getting excited and then they have to wait and then they get excited and then they have to wait and then they get excited and then they have to wait until eventually, you know, they kind of just fade away. You know, they’re tired of going through the process.

They’re worn out, they’re there at a certain point and they start almost resenting the process and that’s the last thing you want with a candidate. You know, you want to make them feel good. You want to make them feel special you want to be attentive with them and having a multi month hiring process, doesn’t make anyone happy.

Don’t just take it from me, check out ERE’s famous “Death By Interview” article.

Build a Shortlist (It Could Save Your Hire)

Number three kind of ties into number one a little bit, but it’s not having enough options. Make sure that you have a legitimate shortlist worked up and that you have multiple different avenues.You want to see as much of the market as possible and you want to know as many people as possible. Naturally, you want to have a lot of people interested in joining your company.

Remember – You’re Trying to Hire, Not Just Interview

Number four is over screening. obviously we want to make sure they’re functionally appropriate. We want to make sure they’re a culture fit. However, once we get into taking multiple persons personality, test intellectual test, functional test, doing all kinds of assessments – you don’t want that to end up being a reason why somebody pulls out.

Sometimes candidate do get a little bit offended when they’re beat over the head with more and more assessments. They feel like you’re just trying to find a reason to screen them out. You really want to make sure that you’re effectively using these and not overdoing it.

A lot of them shouldn’t necessarily be pass/fail – unless it’s a functional test. If its a maintenance tech job and they can’t turn a screw – that’s an issue. But just make sure you’re not overdoing the assessments.

Sell Your Company, Your Team, and Yourself!

The number five recruiting pitfall is not providing enough information up front. You want to have a lot of information about your company. Provide insight on its people, its products and its strategies. Talk about its success, about its achievements, and about its awards. You want to make sure that they see you great light and an accurate light.

Directly attract them to your firms, show them exactly why your company would ultimately be a huge boost to their careers. If all they’ve seen is your website and they’ve talked with a couple of people, maybe they have a business card. You could do better.

Show them exactly what the environment’s like, show them what the people are like and make them feel like they’ve already been working at the company by the time that they start.

And as an absolutely free bonus, I’ll give you the honorable mention pitfall. . . It’s when companies and hiring managers completely ignore the possibility of a counter-offer! More details on how to prepare yourself and your candidate can be seen here, “Managing a Counter Offer”

So those are the top five recruiting pitfalls, at least for 2020, right?. So if you have any questions, Email me I look forward to hearing from you. .

By James Aiken

President of Legacy Search, James Aiken has been dynamically involved in recruiting the elite candidates within the building materials industry for many years. With strength in sales and operations, James has built out multiple sales teams for manufacturers and distributors alike. Email him at

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