One of the things that often happens when you become a supervisor or manager is that you’re invited to participate in the recruiting process. It could be because you’re now responsible for a team of employees. Or another manager will ask you to participate because you will work closely with one of their employees.
Regardless of the reason, there are a few things that new managers need to understand about their role in hiring.
- Tell HR when an employee resigns. And tell them right away. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the average time to fill a position is 42 days. The typical notice period is two weeks. If you tell HR about a resignation when it happens, then you’re only potentially without an employee for 28 days (assuming you get a two week notice). If you tell HR on the employee’s last day, that increases to 42 days. Allow HR to help you – tell them as soon as you know.
- Review the job description. This is the perfect opportunity to make sure that what’s written on paper about the job is what the employee actually does. Responsibilities change regularly – and that’s okay. Just make sure the job description reflects what the employee is going to do. And make any necessary updates.
- Discuss contingent staffing. In #1, we talked about how long it takes to fill a job. If you already know you can’t live a month without an employee, talk with your boss and HR about what can be done. Maybe overtime can be authorized or a freelancer can be brought in to help.
- Hiring managers are allowed to source candidates. When job openings occur, remind the rest of the team that the employee referral program exists (you do have one, right?). Encourage them to tell the opening to their friends. Send out info about the opening to your social media network. Sit down with HR and tell them where you have connections. Work with them to source applicant flow.
- Don’t assume you know how to interview. I know on the surface that interviewing sounds very easy. But it’s not. There are questions that are illegal to ask like “How old are you?” and in some states asking “How much money do you make?” There’s an art to interviewing. Ask HR if there’s an opportunity to attend interview training.
- Take good interview notes. Don’t try to remember everything! If you interview 3-4 people, it will be tough to distinguish between candidates. Find out how to take good (and legal) interview notes. Tell candidates during the interview that you will be taking notes.
- Collaborate! I’m a big fan of collaborative hiring. Identify a couple of people who the employee will work with regularly and get them involved in the recruiting process. It helps to create buy-in and it allows a new hire to know more than one person when they start. Every organization has unwritten rules and new hires will want to find answers – but maybe not from their boss.
- Keep the candidate informed. At the end of an interview, tell the candidate how the recruiting process works, the timetable to make a decision, and who they should contact once they leave. But first, make sure you and HR are on the same page about this information. Even if the candidate doesn’t specifically ask, let them know anyway.
- Always send a TBNT (Thanks but No Thanks). The people who interview with your company have the opportunity to also buy your product / service. You don’t want to lose a candidate and customer at the same time. If a candidate isn’t being considered any longer, let them know. They will respect you and the company. Coordinate response letters with human resources.
- Look for talent, even when there’s not an opening. In #4, we talked about managers helping to source candidates. That doesn’t have to take place only when there’s an opening. Managers should always be looking for talent. For example, I’ve never worked with a sales director that wasn’t always on the search for good sales talent. And when they found them, they presented the candidate to the company. Didn’t matter if we had an open requisition or not.
When it comes to recruiting, everyone has the same goal – find the best talent, as quickly as possible, using the most cost-effective means. It’s not just “an HR thing” because managers will ultimately work with the employee. So managers should join the recruiting process. It’s a win for everyone involved.
Image captured by Sharlyn Lauby at the 34th Street Graffiti Wall in Gainesville, FL