In a job market with high unemployment, employers may find themselves with hiring needs but few available applicants who meet their requirements. What often ends up happening is employers have too many applicants but not enough who are qualified. In today’s unique situation, we’re faced with high unemployment levels but difficulty hiring.
There are a lot of theories on why this is the case, whether it’s a skills gap in the market or that wages are not keeping pace with candidate needs, thus keeping people from applying even though they’re unemployed.
Regardless, employers face a conundrum: Despite high unemployment, there’s a lot of competition for talent. Applicants may already have job offers in hand by the time your organization makes an offer. In this situation, employers need to streamline their hiring process, increasing the likelihood that the organization will make an offer before anyone else.
Here are some ways to speed the hiring process:
- Consider whether you should implement group interviewing. Group interviewing allows you to interview more candidates in a shorter time frame, enabling the organization to make a decision sooner.
- Utilize nontraditional communication options for interviews, like videoconferencing. This removes many logistical and scheduling snags that can drag out the interview scheduling process.
- Don’t forget to look at internal candidates. Promoting from within is a great way to fill roles and will leave entry-level positions that require less screening time for external applicants.
- Consider adding intelligent screening steps to the hiring process. While it may seem counterintuitive to add steps to reduce time, if you have too many applicants, screening them more efficiently can be beneficial.
- Always keep job descriptions updated. Having a process for keeping job descriptions updated enables you to post a job immediately when there’s a vacancy, helping to jump-start the process.
- Consider paying more to have a targeted or sponsored online job post placement. This can increase the job post’s visibility and get more qualified candidates to apply sooner.
If none of these tips help speed up your recruiting process, consider third-party recruiting; full-time recruiters may be able to help you find candidates sooner because of their efficiency, network, and breadth of experience.
What else has your organization done in the past to streamline the recruiting process? What has your experience been?
Bridget Miller is a business consultant with a specialized MBA in International Economics and Management, which provides a unique perspective on business challenges. She’s been working in the corporate world for over 15 years, with experience across multiple diverse departments including HR, sales, marketing, IT, commercial development, and training.