Pros and Cons of Hiring Externally

In yesterday’s Advisor, we talked about the idea that there are clear pros and cons involved with choosing to hire/promote from within the organization vs. hiring an external candidate. We took a quick look at some of the pros and cons of hiring from within. Today’s Advisor will continue the conversation by outlining some of the pros and cons of hiring an external candidate rather than promoting from within.

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Pros to Hiring Externally:

  • An external candidate may provide a fresh perspective, which can be beneficial for the team and for the organization—it can help to get out of old habits.
  • Top talent may be available to increase the overall performance of the team. The person you hire may have much more experience or expertise than existing team members. Or they may have specific training, skills, or knowledge that the current team does not have, such as new certifications or degrees that were not previously available.
  • New people can bring new energy and ideas. They can help bring new mind-sets and outcomes. This may be beneficial especially where innovation or cultural change is needed.

Cons of Hiring Externally:

  • An external hire may take a while to come up to speed in the role, which may mean it takes longer to regain productivity.
  • An external hire may require more training because he or she is likely to be unfamiliar with the organization’s software, systems, processes, etc.
  • An external hire is likely to have to give a notice period at his or her current employer before he or she can even begin, further delaying the process.
  • Bringing someone in from outside the organization is likely to be frustrating for any internal employee who thought he or she should get the promotion—even if the new hire is better qualified. This could impact employee morale and could signal, rightly or wrongly, that the organization is not invested in growing and developing employees.
  • It may mean those who feel they were passed over—who may be top performers on the team—will start looking elsewhere because they feel underappreciated.

Obviously, the right choice will depend on the specific factors at play for any given vacancy. What team members are available and interested? What are their skill=sets? What does the talent market look like at the moment? Can the organization afford to pay more for an expanded skill=set from an external candidate? These are just a few of the questions that come into play when making this decision. What has been your experience?

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