Managers have a tough job and a full plate. They’re responsible for their department planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. They’re also responsible for hiring. But managers themselves are often hired and promoted for their technical expertise, not their ability to hire others.
This means that organizations need to give hiring managers all the tools they need to hire effectively. And it’s more than just interview skills training. Personally, I believe interviewing is hard and complicated. It’s more than simply asking questions. Companies can do their managers a real disservice when they dismiss interview skills training as unnecessary.
In addition to interview skills training, here’s a list of things that managers should know when they are responsible for hiring. These topics could be shared during one-on-one sessions or added to the company’s interviewing skills training program.
1. The cost and impact of hiring decisions. Hiring an employee isn’t cheap. And a bad hire has an impact on everyone in the company. Managers should understand what it costs. I once worked for a company that, before we even started talking about interviews, etc., we had managers calculate cost per hire (CPH). Then had a discussion about what CPH could buy (i.e. equipment, pay increases, bonuses, etc.) It set the stage for the rest of our training time.
2. Their role in the hiring process. Often managers are asked to interview without understanding the entire recruiting process – branding, sourcing, candidate experience, selection, screening, etc. There’s so much more to the process than the interview. Hiring managers would be better interviewers if they knew what happens before and after.
3. Reviewing the job description. Let’s face it. Organizations have two job descriptions: the one that’s written down for legal purposes and the one we talk about to get someone excited about coming to work for the company. Hiring managers need to make sure the job they communicate to candidates aligns with the copy of the job description that HR provides to candidates. HR and legal departments might want to collaborate on this one.
4. Understanding the law. Speaking of the law, hiring managers need to know what’s legal to discuss and how to take good notes. Even if the company has an excellent recruiting technology solution, it’s possible there will be times when taking handwritten notes might be necessary. Legal information might vary by state or country. It could also vary by industry. Oh, and one more thing…hiring managers should know how to extend a proper job offer. They might not do it every day, but they should know how (just in case).
5. How to evaluate a candidate. Personally, I find that the selection part of the hiring process frequently gets shorted. We spend so much time sourcing and interviewing, only to spend 10-20 minutes on selection. If that’s all the time needed, then great. But I do wonder if it should be longer. Hiring managers should receive some kind of self-awareness and bias training. They need to know how to objectively evaluate the skills and qualifications of a candidate.
One of the biggest responsibilities that managers have is hiring. Because if they don’t do it well, then the other functions of their job (planning, organizing, leading, and controlling) will not go well. Organizations need to give managers the skills they need not only to interview, but understand the recruiting process. That translates into better hires who can help the company achieve its goals.
P.S. I’m very excited to be speaking about manager onboarding at this year’s Recruiting Trends & Talent Tech conference being held on Tuesday, November 28 at the Palm Beach County Convention Center. With recruiting being both a challenge and a top priority for companies, this is one show you do not want to miss. HR Bartender readers get a $100 discount on premium passes to the event.14