Small, Midsize Businesses Struggle with Hiring Process
Smaller businesses run lean, and usually don’t have a full HR department. So it’s not surprising that many of them struggle to get the hiring process right.
A new survey from global staffing firm Robert Half probed small and mid-size businesses on how they cope with this mission-critical part of doing business.
Among the results:
- Nearly half (49 percent) said most hiring managers underestimate the complexity of the hiring process.
- Sixty-five percent cited problems with their hiring process.
- A strong majority (81 percent) said their companies have made a bad hire.
Several factors complicate hiring in smaller organizations, according to Paul McDonald, senior executive director at Robert Half. “Some firms lack dedicated recruiting staff or a human resources function altogether,” he said. “Multiple demands on a business owner’s time also can pull attention away from recruiting and cause it to fall to the last priority.”
Business owners noted many negative impacts of making the wrong hire:
- On average, respondents estimated 45 hours were wasted on hiring and onboarding people who ultimately did not work out.
- More than half (53 percent) reported increased stress on the team that worked with the bad hire.
- One in five (20 percent) cited decreased confidence in the managers’ ability to make good hiring decisions.
Robert Half offers this advice:
- Branch out– Fifty-eight percent of respondents said the best new hires come from referrals, including employees, friends, recruiters and others in their network. Go beyond posting job openings and hoping the right person will apply. Among the respondents who use recruiters, 76 percent said a recruiter was able to find a candidate they wouldn’t have found on their own.
- Delegate – Forty-five percent of owners noted that the most challenging hiring step is evaluating candidates based on their skills and potential fit; 26 percent admit it takes them too long to fill open roles. Delegating these duties to an outside resource can cut hiring timelines and save money: Forty-three percent said working with a recruiter saved the firm time because the recruiter did most of the work; 36 percent also said they saved money by finding someone more quickly.
- Get a guarantee – Thirty-two percent of businesses working with recruiters said they do so for the service guarantee. Ask recruiters about their placement success rates and what they offer if a new hire doesn’t stick.
- Bridge the gap – Only 18 percent of respondents said they brought in temporary professionals to assist with heavy workloads while replacing bad hires. The right person can lift the burden from existing staff, keep projects moving and may be evaluated on the job for a potential full-time role.
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