3. The interview process – longer than you would expect and requires exacting focus
Technology continues to impact the job market and the process of getting jobs.
For the most part, technology has had a positive impact. Small companies that hire infrequently do not always achieve the optimal answer because they are ill-equipped to handle the volume of resumes received. When my firm posted a job that required two years of experience and relatively sophisticated Microsoft Excel skills, we received resumes from 70 candidates with zero to 35 years of experience.
Worse, the majority of the resumes received failed to mention Microsoft Excel!
When managing the interview process, consider the following steps and up to a two-month timetable from the time you post the position:
- Reviewing the applications (10-30 days after posting)
- Inviting candidates for interviews (immediately after the application deadline)
- Conducting the interviews (1-2 weeks after the application deadline)
- Deciding, notifying and winning the applicant’s acceptance (1-2 weeks)
In my experience, the best candidates submit their application 5-20 days after you post the job. This implies to me that the best candidates craft specific resumes and tailor their cover letters for the position.
The hardest part about reviewing resumes is matching the contents of each application to the position description. I have never found a perfect match but generally get close enough by looking for resumes from employees in companies in similar industries or with backgrounds I think could be relevant.
Two words of advice about the interview process.
First, be human. For some reason it has become socially acceptable to ignore job applicants. You can change this mentality one applicant at a time.
After you have reviewed the applicants and selected those you want to meet, send a brief email to the applicants you will not meet thanking them for taking the time to apply. This practice will establish you and your company as good humans.
You never know where your next customer will come from! Secondly, make everyone you meet feel special. You can only hire one of them but they still sacrificed their time to come meet with you.
Again, you never know which of these candidates will land at a vendor or client.
The decision to hire a new employee is a lengthy process that will distract you from the main purpose of the company: servicing clients and earning a profit. Focusing on the details will help you hire the best candidate and make your time investment worthwhile.
In my next post I will write about getting the employee off to a great start by arranging a fabulous first day.
About the author
Brian Heese is the Director of Corporate Work Study Program at a unique high school in Harlem called Cristo Rey. Cristo Rey’s mission is to provide a college-preparatory, high school education to students who for academic or financial reasons cannot attend another quality high school. Since the students’ families can’t afford to pay private school tuition, the students work at premier companies and assign their earnings to the school. The jobs pay about 45% of the cost of their education; the remainder is funded by donations and a small amount from the students’ families. Brian leads the job program by establishing relationships with companies, training the students for their positions and servicing the 100+ clients that hire the school’s students. Learn more about the Cristo Rey Corporate Work Study Program hereWebsite